Cisco® CCNA Exam Cram Notes : Introduction to Cisco Switches

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4. LAN Switching Technologies

1. Introduction to Cisco Switches

Cisco 2950 switch (CISCO CATALYST 2950 24 PORT SWITCH WS-C2950-24 10/100)

Front Panel: The switch front panel consists of 24 RJ-45 port connectors that support 10/100 Mbps speed and LED indicators as shown in the figures below. Please note that the 2950 series switches come in different flavors and vary greatly in the number and type of ports available.

Cisco 2950 switch Front Pannel 1
Cisco 2950 switch Front Pannel 2
Cisco 2950 switch Front Pannel 3

Explanation: The switch front panel contains Ports, LEDs and the Mode button.


1. 10/100 Ports : These use RJ-45 Connectors and twisted-pair cabling and they can be connected to 10BASE-T-compatible devices, such as workstations and hubs, or 100BASE-TX-compatible devices, such as high-speed workstations, servers, hubs, routers, and other switches. The 10/100 ports can be explicitly set to operate in any combination of half duplex, full duplex, 10Mbps, or 100Mbps.

2. 100BASE-FX Ports : The 100BASE-FX Ports use 50/125- or 62.5/125-micron multimode fiber-optic cabling. These ports only operate at 100Mbps in full-duplex mode.

You can connect a 100BASE-FX port to an SC or ST port on a target device by using one of the MT-RJ fiber-optic patch cables

3. 10/100/1000 Ports : The 10/100/1000 ports on Catalyst 2950T-24 switches use RJ-45 connectors and twisted-pair cabling. The ports can connect to10BASE-T-compatible devices, such as workstations and hubs or 100BASE-TX-compatible devices, such as high-speed workstations, servers, hubs, routers, and other switches or 1000BASE-T-compatible devices, such as high-speed workstations, servers, hubs, routers, and other switches.

LEDs: You can use the LEDs to monitor switch activity and performance. Changing the port mode changes the information provided by each port status LED.

Management Options : Catalyst 2950 switches offer these management options:

Cluster Management Suite (CMS) : CMS is made up of three web-based applications that you use to manage switches. You can use Cluster Builder, which includes Cluster View, and Cluster Manager to create, configure, and monitor switch clusters. You can also use Device Manager to manage individual and standalone switches.

IOS command-line interface (CLI) : You can manage switches by using command-line entries. To access the CLI, connect a PC or terminal directly to the console port on the switch rear panel. If the switch is attached to your network, you can use a Telnet connection to manage the switch from a remote location.

CiscoView application: You can use the CiscoView device-management application to set configuration parameters and to view switch status and performance information. This application, which you purchase separately, can be a standalone application or part of an Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) network-management platform.

You can manage switches by using an SNMP-compatible management station running platforms such as HP OpenView and SunNet Manager. The switch supports a comprehensive set of MIB extensions and MIB II, the IEEE 802.1D bridge MIB, and four RMON groups. For more information, refer to the documentation that came with your SNMP application.

Cisco 1912 - 12 port switch: The Cisco Catalyst 1900 series of switches offer an economical option for Ethernet networks. There are two Catalyst 1900 switches, the 1912, with 12 10BaseT switched ports and two Fast Ethernet switched ports, and the 1924 with 24 10BaseT switched ports and two Fast Ethernet switched ports. The Cisco Catalyst 1900 switch is useful for small workgroups needing switched 10-Mbps ports. Cisco has created a Command-Line Interface (CLI) for the 1900 series of switches.

24-port 1900 switch

The figure above shows a 24-port 1900 switch with 2 Fast Ethernet ports.

10BaseT ports: The 10BaseT network ports use standard RJ-45 connectors. These ports can connect to 10BaseT-compatible devices, such as individual workstations and hubs, with Category 3, 4, or 5 cabling. Using this type of cabling, the distance between the switch and the attached device can be up to 100 meters.

Switched 100-Mbps Ports : The switches can have any of the following high-speed ports (depends on model):

1. Two switched 100BaseTX ports

2. One switched 100BaseTX port and one switched 100BaseFX port

3. Two switched 100-Mbps fiber-optic ports

Rear-Panel Description

The rear panel of a Catalyst 1900 switch consists of the following:

1. AC power connector

2. Console port

3. Redundant power system (RPS) connector and

4. A switched AUI port

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