Cisco readies LAN switch for IP telephony

Cisco is set to roll out a LAN switch for mid-sized companies that is designed to be deployed in IP telephony networks.

The Catalyst 3524-PWR XL features 24 Fast Ethernet ports and two Gigabit Interface Connector (GBIC) ports. The switch features in-line power and quality-of-service enhancements specifically designed for IP telephony.

With integrated in-line power, the Catalyst 3524-PWR XL detects the type of IP device on each port, such as an IP phone, and powers it using 48-volt DC power over Category 5 unshielded twisted pair cable. With in-line power, an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) or separate wall power is not required for each IP phone, Cisco says.

Cisco recommends deployment of redundant power supplies to back up switch power, however.

For QoS, the Catalyst 3524-PWR XL supports port-based reclassification, allowing users to change IEEE 802.1p class-of-service settings on a per-port basis. This lets users prioritise voice traffic ahead of file transfers or Web surfing, Cisco says.

For reliability, the switch utilises Layer 2 functions such as virtual LANs, fast convergent Spanning Tree, and other features to enhance network stability. For security, the switch prevents intrusion by limiting port access to specific MAC addresses.

Also, TACACS+ is used to authenticate management access to the switches. And the 3524-PWR XL includes a feature called Private VLAN Edge, which provides isolation between ports on a switch so that traffic from "protected" ports is only sent to the uplinks and cannot travel to another port within a switch.

The Cisco Catalyst 3524-PWR XL Enterprise Edition is available now and is priced at $5841 (RRP ex tax).

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