My organization is going to run 10 GbE fiber optic across multiple campuses to provide faster connection from site to site (5 sites) and to a centralized datacenter located at one of the buildings. We've come up with a network design based on Cisco Nexus 7000 at the core (doing layer 3 only) and 2960-Ss at the access layer. From design perspective this plan works perfectly fine and accommodate company's any future growth and scalability but due to the fact that cost is always a huge factor, it turned out going all the way Cisco across the board is going to be a VERY expensive solution! On the other hand, HP has proposed a pricing based on their own line of products (A 12500 series at the core and some of their layer 2 devices at the access layer) and the price turned out to be significantly lower!
I have been pushing hard to convince the company to go all the way Cisco because of many reasons which I value but have been unable yet to find any compelling reasons why HP is not good and Cisco can really do a better job here. Because the reality is they both will WORK eventually! However the differences are when we run into serious issues i.e outage or future planning and etc
I was wondering have you guys ever worked with HP gears in a high throughput network environment (i.e. site-to-site 10G connection) as ours and have ever run into any major problems which would give us enough good reasons not to go with HP or vice versa? what’s your take on this story? Is it really safe to pick HP over Cisco technically and also from investment protection in a long run?
So in comparison to Cisco does HP have the same or better:
- High end feature set?
- Maintenance contracts?
- Availability of skilled staff on the marketplace to manage the equipment?
- Easy access to validated designs and textbooks?
What implications does installing HP in the core have on the rest of the network? Do you have Cisco phones for example? Do you have Cisco firewalls for the Internet edge? This may involve a major re-design of the rest of the network. Has this cost been accounted for when comparing the two vendors?
It is also my experience is that mixing vendors doesn't always work. It's too easy for one vendor to blame the other when something doesn't work.
Is the Nexus there just to aggregate the 5 x 10G links? Or is the plan to take advantage of some of it's high end features such as VDC or VPC? If not I suggest looking at deploying 6500's or even 4500's instead.
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The point of standards based protocols is devices interoperate I have done literally 1000s of installs with various vendors products and rarely have had an issue. Limiting yourself to a single vendor out of fear of the unknown is limiting your ability to implement the best products to solve your problem. Cisco is a fantastic company with wonderful products but it is by no means the leading vendor, except by market share, in any of the network infrastructure catagories IMO.
Are you not going to implement F5 out of fear? If so you are over-looking one of the best products on the market. There is a laundry list of fantastic products and vendors out there do not limit yourself out of fear the facts are they do work together and you can networks better with a vendor nuetral approach....
In answer to the previous post yes I have worked with HP previously, although it would not be my first choice for high performance, I would recommend looking around at all the vendors and making an informed choice one based on fact...