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Cisco Nexus 5548 / 5020 and FEX Fabric Externder 2000 Series Limitations

We have dual Nexus 5020 with vPC including 12 fex fabric extenders having two redundant uplinks to each of the 5020.

(The nexus run stable on n5000-uk9.4.1.3.N2.1a.bin)

We would like to add more FEX but still software seems to be limited to 12 FEX in vPC configuration with two redundant uplinks.

I would like to know if and when Nexus 5000 fabric extenders ( fex ) would be able to support more than 12 FEX devices.

Our ideal configuration would require 16 and later 24 fex but we would not like to add more of the nexus 5020.

In March I had got the info from Cisco Sales that the 5020 would definitely support 16 FEX or more by end of the year.

Now it seems that it does not.

We have now 16 FEX plus spares but can not use those.

May be someone from Cisco might answer here as I don't want to speculate here.

Thanks for clarifications.

1 Reply 1

Joe Sanchez


The Cisco Road Map for the 5010 and 5020 doesn't include extending the current total (12) FEX capabities.  The 5548 and 5596 will support more (16) per 55xxk, and with the 7K will support upto 32 FEX's.

Documentation has been spotty on this subject, because the term 5k indicates that all 5000 series switches will support extended FEX's which is not the case only the 55xx will support more than 12 FEX.  Maybe in the future the terminology for the 5k series should be term 5000 series and 5500 series Nexus, there are several differences and advancements between the two series.

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