Equipment Required for Practical Experience


This section covers what equipment you need if you want to gain practical experience from the exercises in this book by actually following along with real equipment. Though this is the ideal way to benefit from this book, such equipment is not necessary due to the detailed explanations. If you do not have access to equipment, see the section, "How To Use This Book if You Do Not Have Access to This Equipment," later in this Introduction.

The features of Cisco Catalyst switches are much more based upon hardware than they are on software, unlike Cisco routers, where the software component (Cisco IOS) is common across all routers. This means that you find significant differences in the functionality provided by each Catalyst switch family. To learn how to configure all of the features provided by the Catalyst product family as a whole, it is often necessary for you to have access to a wide variety of Catalyst hardware platforms, some of them very expensive.

In this book, you work with three main Catalyst switch platforms:

  • Catalyst 3550 Next-generation Cisco IOS-based switch with Layer 3/4 intelligence and Layer 3 switching capabilities. You can also use the Catalyst 2950 or Catalyst 2900/3500XL switches instead; however, some features supported on the Catalyst 3550 are not supported on these switches.

  • Catalyst 4000/4500 Most Catalyst operating system (CatOS) configuration is based upon the Catalyst 4000/4500 switch. A cheap alternative to the Catalyst 4000/4500 is the Catalyst 2900 series switches, which are based upon the Catalyst 4000 switch (they run the same operating system image) but run on a fixed platform with a small form-factor.

  • Catalyst 6000/6500 More advanced CatOS and Cisco IOS features are configured on the Catalyst 6000/6500 switch.


Nearly all of the scenarios in this book require interconnection of Catalyst switches, which requires the use of crossover cables. If you are configuring your own lab equipment, always ensure you use crossover cables to connect each switch.

In addition to working with Catalyst switches, you also work with other types of devices as listed below:

  • Cisco routers Some scenarios include Cisco IOS routers to provide traditional routing functions. When selecting a router platform for use in each of the scenarios, the minimum recommended platform is the Cisco 2621 router, which includes 2 x 10/100BaseT network ports, although some scenarios may permit the use of lower end routers.

  • Hosts To test end-to-end connectivity, you must prove connectivity between different hosts on the network. Ideally, you should have a least two hosts on your network, each running Windows 2000/XP or the operating system of your choice.

  • Servers Some scenarios rely on external servers that provide supporting services. In Chapter 8, a Windows 2000 server with CiscoSecure ACS installed is required.

For all CatOS switches, all configuration examples are performed using CatOS version 7.6. For all Cisco IOS switches, the IOS version used varies depending on the switch platform used:

  • Catalyst 2950/3550 Cisco IOS 12.1(13)EA1

  • Catalyst 4000/4500 with Supervisor 3/4 12.1(12c)EW

  • Catalyst 4000 Layer 3 Router Module Cisco IOS 12.0(10)W5

  • Catalyst 6000/6500 with Native IOS Cisco IOS 12.1(13)E


To conserve space, complete configurations for devices used in each scenario are not included in the text. Complete configurations are available at

CCNP Self-Study CCNP Practical Studies. Switching
CCNP(R) Practical Studies: Switching (CCNP Self-Study)
ISBN: 1587200600
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2002
Pages: 135
Authors: Justin Menga

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