Cisco Catalyst 6500 Chassis

Today we talk about the Cisco Catalyst 6500 Chassis in the detail. Whenever we required the high end core and distribution switch in the enterprise network we will go with the lot of the options like Cisco 4500 catalyst Chassis, Cisco catalyst 6500 Chassis and Cisco catalyst 6800 Chassis.

All these three chassis are excellent at the core and the distribution layer in the enterprise network. So  they are the first choice of the customers. Although Cisco 6800 catalyst and Cisco 4500 catalyst chassis are new as compared to the cisco catalyst 6500 chassis. So if you have a chance to see the existing network of enterprise or you can say the big network customers cisco 6500 catalyst chassis will be there for sure.

There are various models available in Cisco 6500 catalyst chassis and some of them are as below:
Cisco 6503, Cisco 6503E, Cisco 6504E, Cisco 6506, Cisco 6506E, Cisco 6509, Cisco 6509E, Cisco 6509NEB, Cisco 6509NEB-A and Cisco 6513 catalyst switch. All these models are very much robust and excellent in their performance.
Fig 1.1- Cisco catalyst 6500 Chassis.

You can use dual supervisor engines in their chassis for hardware redundant solution. Now a days we have 3 different models of supervisor engines used as they are

  • Supervisor engine 32
  • Supervisor engine 720 
  • Supervisor engine 2T
All these models have different slots for supervisor engines and these are like as :
  • Slot 1 & 2: Cisco Catalyst 6503, Cisco 6503E, Cisco 6504E
  • Slot 5 & 6: Cisco 6506, Cisco 6506E, Cisco 6509, Cisco 6509E, Cisco 6509NEB, Cisco 6509NEB-A
  • Slot 7 & 8: Cisco 6513 catalyst switch
If you are talking about the classic line cards or single fabric line cards slots, they are such as :
  • Slot 2 & 3 : Cisco Catalyst 6503, Cisco 6503E
  • Slot 2 through 4: Cisco 6504E
  • Slot 1 through 6: Cisco 6506, Cisco 6506E
  • Slot 1 through 9: Cisco 6509, Cisco 6509E, Cisco 6509NEB, Cisco 6509NEB-A
  • Slot 1 through 13: Cisco 6513 catalyst switch
There are some of the cards used in the Cisco catalyst 6500 chassis. May be you know all these cards but i can let you know these cards are : Policy feature card. Did you hear anytime or did u had a chance to see the PFC3 card ? well the feature of the PFC3 card is a big topic and will be covered in another post, but in short you can say the PFC3 card have the feature of MPLS, NAT and PAT. We will discuss this policy based card in another post soon.

We have another cards used as CEF256, dCEF256, CEF720, dCEF720 cards as well in cisco catalyst 6500 chassis. These cards are capable of 8 Gbps and 20 Gbps of fabric connections respectively. There is DFC ( Distribution forwarding cards ) are also available in the cisco chassis. It is just the hardware representation i am explaining you, I will come up with these cards separately in another post soon.

Fig 1.2- Cisco 6500 chassis in Datacenter.

The above diagram shows how we are using the Cisco 6500 chassis in the core and distribution layer in the datacenter environment with Nexus 5K chassis and then we have FEX connected with is further connected to the servers.

Lets come to the topic again, now we can talk about the L3 protocols supported by Cisco catalyst 6500 chassis.

These are capable of the various layer 3 protocols and that layer 3 protocols are Border Gateway Protocol version 4 (BGPv4), Open Shortest Path First (OSPF), Intermediate System-to-Intermediate System (IS-IS), Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol(EIGRP), Routing Information Protocol (RIP), Distributed FIB Switching, Cisco Discover Protocol (CDP), Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP).

Some of the other protocols which Cisco catalyst 6500 chassis supports are internetwork Packet Exchange (IPX), Appletalk, DECnet, Virtual Integrated Network Service (VINES), Connectionless Network Service (CLNS).

It can also support Multicast forwarding, Protocol independent Multicast (PIM) (both sparse and dense mode), Bi-Directional PIM in hardware, Cisco Group Management Protocol and Internet Group Management Protocol (IGMP) snooping and also the MPLS support features.

The another feature of VSS is introduce in cisco catalyst 6500 chassis with Multi chassis ether-channel as well. We will discuss that topic in another post as well.

This post is just the introductory part of Cisco catalyst 6500 chassis. we are soon coming with all the features and the cards information in detail in another post.