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Cisco Catalyst 9600 models


Hello All,

We are currently looking to migrate 160+ servers from an EOL stacked switch, and looking at the following options:

  1. Catalyst 9600 with 25Gb line cards
  2. Nexus 9500 with 25Gb line cards

If we deployed the Catalyst 9600 this could be managed by Cisco DNA we recently deployed as part of an Edge refresh, and we utilise the DNA Advantage features SWIM, GIR, Assurance etc... The only reservation with the 9600 is 4 x 48 line cards being the total port count, l was wondering if there is a plan to bring out a larger model with 8 line cards, in the event of future expansion.



4 Replies 4

VIP Guru VIP Guru
VIP Guru

If this is pure Server requirement, not campus Lan of 3 tier architecture.


I would suggest going with nexus, they dedicated to the DC environment for Hosting Servers.


sometimes I see the costing of 9600-bit high compares to nexus 9K switches.


again depends on business requirements, personally I go with nexus if the server hosting.



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Thank Balaji,
The Nexus 9500 gives the future line card addition, and larger throughput capacity, so we have a bit more flexibility with future growth.
The Cat 9600 does have a higher cost with DNA licensing, which we could use for SWIM, GIR and Assurance features, but we need to look at cost/design, vs mgmt from a DNA and the features.

Shawn Wargo
Cisco Employee
Cisco Employee


There are plans, and there are plans. There are discussions for a larger (8-slot) C9600 chassis, but are currently uncommitted (vs. other priorities) and would not be available in this calendar year (2020).


Can you please share exactly how many ports you need?


Keep in mind that C9600 has a small footprint (only 8RU), and supports Stackwise Virtual (i.e. 2X physical, in 1 virtual system). With that design, you could support 8 x 48 x 25G = 384.


Hi Shawn,
Thanks for the update, and good news on larger model.
The current port count is 160 dual homed, so 320 in use today, leaving some room for future expansion. I will look at the options between the different models where throughput, expansion and cost for the NXOS switch, vs the features we could use in DNA.
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