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Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches

Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches

Overview

What is Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches?

Cisco offers the Catalyst 9500 series of campus LAN switches.

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Recent Reviews

We like 9500s

10 out of 10
June 18, 2020
We use them as our new edge-core devices where we can do routing and it gives us the flexibility to have high speed interconnects to our …
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Awards

Products that are considered exceptional by their customers based on a variety of criteria win TrustRadius awards. Learn more about the types of TrustRadius awards to make the best purchase decision. More about TrustRadius Awards

Reviewer Pros & Cons

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Video Reviews

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Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Review | Core Solution for one user
03:14
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Review | How a Software Developer Really Feels
06:15
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Pricing

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What is Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches?

Cisco offers the Catalyst 9500 series of campus LAN switches.

Entry-level set up fee?

  • No setup fee
For the latest information on pricing, visithttps://engage2demand.cisco.com/lp=567?…

Offerings

  • Free Trial
  • Free/Freemium Version
  • Premium Consulting/Integration Services

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Alternatives Pricing

What is Cisco Nexus Series Switches?

Cisco Nexus is a series of network switches.

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Product Details

What is Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches?

The Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series is presented by the vendor as the first 100/40-Gbps switch purpose built for the enterprise campus, and recognized as CRN's 2017 Overall Network Product of the Year. Designed for security, the Internet of Things (IoT), and the cloud, the vendor describes their Catalyst 9500 fixed-core switches as high-density building blocks for a next-generation, intent-based network.

Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches Competitors

Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches Technical Details

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Frequently Asked Questions

Cisco offers the Catalyst 9500 series of campus LAN switches.

HPE Networking Switches and Dell PowerConnect Switches are common alternatives for Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches.

The most common users of Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are from Enterprises (1,001+ employees).
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Comparisons

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Reviews and Ratings

(45)

Attribute Ratings

Reviews

(1-21 of 21)
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Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are used as Access and Core Distribution for our office users to connect to the enterprise networks for their work routines.
  • Easy to Deploy
  • Can last long
  • Light Weight
  • Compact which can be easily deployed for office with limited space
  • IOS - Tends to be buggy sometimes
  • IOS - Different flavor of the firmware which may be confusing sometime
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are well suited for campus and small office environments to provide reliable network connectivity for users in the indoor environment. If needed to deploy for outdoor environment, they tend to be a little hot which may affect the lifespan of the equipment.
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
So we run a data center not only for us, but for our customers, and we have our 300-400 customers and we divide those customers into tenants. So we got tenants and in these tenants, we have security zones inverse and ACI gives us the chance to divide those tenants in the network and the security zones. And well the decision was because it's quite easy, it gives us an API so we can write our own standards into code. So we are on the way to infrastructure as a code and can deploy customer topologies faster. So if there's any challenge we can solve it because it's very flexible.
  • The recy, it's amazing. So we got a multi-chassis recy, there's no question if we can do any kind of maintenance, it is more than heatless. As long as the server has more than one interface, of course, I have to connect two devices but it runs really smooth, really fast. We have never had any problem with the maintenance. We had another kind of problem because it's a completely new technology for the networkers. They have to think a little bit. Others, have to go to the DevOps. They have to think in code, but they still need the basics of networks to understand what they're coding.
  • Well the ACI, so the AP, the controller give us good chances to run everything, to configure everything. But the monitoring itself, it's not that easy. You need other products like Nexus dashboard or something else to do the monitoring. This is a little bit of a con. It's another technology so everyone has to think a little bit of others to adapt this knowledge and it takes two years I think for a technician to understand what ACI is really doing and what we can do with it.
It's well suited to a multi-tenancy environment. So if you have many customers and air-shared data center infrastructure, you can divide them into the tenants. So you really can separate everything. The security zones are still running on the same devices but they're really separated from the basement on. So this is one of the biggest advantages for our customers actually.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
ResellerIncentivized
Core switches with optical interfaces, distribution switches
  • uplink port choices
  • performance
  • Virtual stacking
  • Price
  • Innovation
  • 3rd party Integration
Enterprise core switching well suited, DC not so much appropriate
Paulo Thame | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We use the Catalyst 9500 series switch as the core of our network. We had info that connected all the places in the city. The 9500 connects with other 9200 and 9300 catalyst switches to complete the info via. As access switches, we use 2960 and now, some C1000 switches in each place.
  • Interconnectivity
  • Reliability in performance.
  • Network access
  • Customer support and helpfull community
  • Virtual Stackwise
  • Integration with 2960 model
Appropriate to be the network core. We use it in our infovia. Some places use 100GB connections and others, 40GB connections. The configuration is pretty simple to be done and maintain. The integration with DNA Center and other solutions is good and simplifies the troubleshooting when needed to resolve issues. The automation with DNAC is very good.
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
It [Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches] is implemented in our company to enhance bandwidth and can manage distribution points and can also take benefits to form other features as well. Plus, we can have high-speed interconnections and we can integrate it into DNA, and the most amazing part of it is automated deployment. They [switches] are well suited.
  • The end-to-end security it provides makes it a standout among other such catalyst switches.
  • Stacking is amazing.
  • It is capable of managing high bandwidth.
  • Data transfer is not just easy, but also at a very high speed.
  • Analytics are beneficial in helping us to check security protocols.
  • The bugs in it are annoying and they are impeding an update.
  • Licensing is not good and has too many frustrating options.
  • The documentation is minimal.
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are great for providing end-to-end security and we are getting lightning-fast speed and this is massive for us. It is good for creating a link between web servers and database servers. And it is good for even the larger organizations as well; I would say it is helping in connecting devices across our organizations.
May 11, 2021

Great product

Sébastien Vandenbussche | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are both used in our infrastructure to fulfill 4 main goals:
- Wired and wireless access to end-users of our hospitality (fairs/congress)
- Provide up to 10gbps connectivity between nodes
- Network connectivity inside our offices
- Provide a strong resilient network and infrastructure (vm's, access points, ups).

This with the support of our provider (proximus)
  • Excellent quality (hardware and software)
  • Very good support (provider/cisco TAC)
  • Long-lasting
  • Sometimes expensive depending the features needed (hardware or software)
  • Fans always noisy
  • Monitoring solution (prime) sometime a little bit long to configure
Very well designed for fixed infrastructures. However, might be a plus for Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches to gather information around the world about venues/concert/hospitalities/congresses, the way they proceed and/or operates. The IT in this field of "Networking" is very recent and expands at an increases growth very quickly. The desires of end-customers might change within a week or a day, and they need to reconfigure the switching side cans be easier (ie: cron's, easiest QoS, P2P or not, ...)
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We use them as our core distribution network layer 2/3 switches with [the] future vision of rolling out SD Access. We see it as the future proof platform which is highly scalable due to stacking capabilities. It is a perfect fit for our active data centres. [These] series provide you high stability.
  • Stacking
  • SD access
  • Security
  • Switching capcity
  • Bandwidth
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are well suited for small enterprises if you are not looking nor have [a] need for extreme bandwidths but you have SD access on your agenda. And vice versa, if you have a high demand for traffic throughput - you should consider [the] Nexus series.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We are using Cisco Catalyst Switches 9500 series as a core switch for our Campus - it gives us the stability and resilience in building our campus network. Cisco 9500 series gives us the opportunity to double our network performance, throughput, and capabilities, with a great bandwidth ports up to 100G.
  • Great performance.
  • High port density.
  • High bandwidth capabilities.
  • Some changes in solution than before.
  • Needs some training to gain new knowledge.
Cisco Catalyst Switches 9500 Series fits perfectly in medium to large companies as a core or aggregation switch with the benefit of virtual stack - you can use two of them as a one switch for expansion, durability and high availability. It gives you the flexibility to use all Catalyst Series features with a great throughput and high performance with high interface bandwidth.
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
These [Cisco Catalyst] 9500C-40X units are used for high speed link aggregation and for small scale data center core switching. The main problem these switches resolved was a small scale solution to the lack of 40Gbps+ stand alone interconnect networking.
  • Documentation
  • Support
  • Stability
  • Ease of configuration
  • The 9500C does not have dedicated stackwise, in order to stack these switches you must consume some of the available ports on the switch itself.
  • Virtual Stackwise is a little cumbersome to configure and get running properly
  • The newest iteration of Catalyst switches REQUIRE the DNA licensing platform, even though it will not be used.
The [Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches] is very well suited for datacenter core and distribution models, they work very well as a replacement for the 3850 switches that many smaller organizations use for core switching. The Catalyst 9500 series switches also works very well as a top of rack aggregation switch for SFP and QSFP connectivity.
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are used by my organization as the backbone or core of our enterprise network switching. We implemented these switches to replace the our Cisco 6509 Series Core Switches. The use of the Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches allowed for increased bandwidth between our various distribution points across our organization while adding other additional benefits.
  • Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are capable of 10g/40g with a great selection of ports for these speeds.
  • The Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switch is a very capable piece of kit, supporting a lot of Cisco's new feature sets.
  • Cisco IOS is the gold standard for switch operating systems.
  • When initially implementing the new Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches, we had issues where features promised were not delivered until a later firmware release
  • Issues with some parts of Cisco TAC providing different resolutions to the same issues that contradicted themselves
We actively use Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches in a dual-active pairing through StackWise. For a medium-sized organization such as ours, the connectivity options that Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches provide are more than sufficient for backbone speeds between our various distribution points across our institution.

I do not believe these switches are for those feint of heart or those not already used to Cisco IOS-based devices. Minor configuration errors, as with any switch, have great potential for bringing your business down to its knees.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We use Cisco 9500 for our core infrastructure. They have been chosen with Cisco after consultation and advice, they are proper size and have enough performance for our needs. They are easy to configure and we have connected to them database servers and few other distribution switches and they work really well, so far no issues with software or hardware.
  • High data transfer.
  • Easy switch between nodes in redundancy/stack pair.
  • Great Cisco support.
  • Initial high cost as its Cisco and you can find other vendor much cheaper.
  • You have to buy Cisco DNA even if you do not want to use it at start which increases the cost.
Communication between web servers and database servers or just doing replication of database where you need to get proper speeds so all copy in lightning fast speeds. This is how we use it and I think this is how I would recommend to use it. Also they can be used as core for your large office infrastructure.
Bill Holmberg | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
The speed and versatility is really great--SFP ports for either copper or fiber, 1GB, 10GB, or 25GB. They are rock solid switches that run our core and run 24/7/365 for years without issue. The new user interface is great, and you can also use the old SSH CIOS commands too.
  • Fast switching
  • Constant uptime
  • Variable port configurations
  • Easy changes
  • High availability and failover
  • Incorporate more of the Meraki reporting
  • Continue to improve the UI
  • Cost is still high
Great for core switching between hosts and SAN--not really appropriate for end-user cubicles direct. The cost per port and the cost of SFP+ modules is best left to the server room, as opposed to the aggregation switches.
June 18, 2020

We like 9500s

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
We use them as our new edge-core devices where we can do routing and it gives us the flexibility to have high speed interconnects to our edge closets. This solves the problems of not worrying to have a big chassis to implement and configure, and it has the opportunity to have a virtual chassis.
  • Virtual chassis
  • Ease of configuration
  • Integration into DNA
  • Licensing needs to get fixed, too many options.
  • Make software updates easier.
  • Make the virtual chassis bigger.
  • Support third party optics without having to get traceback errors.
To get a high-speed switch with layer 3 routing, this is the switch for you. It is easy to set up and implement quickly. You can use the right to use licensing for the most part to get the features you need to get up and running. The drawbacks are getting the licensing and the lead time is out there aways.
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
We are using the Catalyst 9500 as core switches. We have them in a virtual stack and they have been working very well since migrating to them almost 3 years ago. We use them to connect our edges, data center, IOT networks as well as all of the other remote switches.
  • The virtual stacking works really well.
  • Speed and performance have been great.
  • The build of IOS-XE they are running has been bug free.
  • We did have some bugs in older versions where memory was running up on them. This was fixed with new IOS updates.
  • We did see some limitations with the virtual stacking, but I believe they have expanded their capabilities.
We moved from a Nexus 5k to Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches. They served our needs better than the Nexus 5k and were much easier to use. I would say if you had heavy data center needs you would still need to look at a Nexus series but if you want an all-around great performing Campus switch, this is the one to look at. In my case, I didn't need high port density but did need the performance so it was a great fit for me.
Idan Malei | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We use Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches for backbone and aggregate floor switches, stacked with StackWise Virtual, and we used 10G-40G ports.
  • Easy to config
  • Fast
  • Stackwise
  • Rollback
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches has various models to fit anywhere.
January 29, 2020

High performance switch

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We use Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches in a MAN MPLS loop for our customer MAN.
  • Routing
  • Mpls
  • Better sfp compatibility
The Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches work very well for our campus core network.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
They represent the core of our network, all the communication of our critical services crosses this equipment. The problem that it represents today is that administration becomes complex as we integrate more remote sites with the same technology. Administration via command line becomes an extensive and complex job.
  • Throughput
  • Redundancy
  • Security
  • Modular
  • Pricing
  • Port density
  • Administration
Well suited for large enterprise core and distribution switches, scenarios with large throughput demand, critical services and 24x7 operations.
Less appropriate for small enterprises and OT industry, these switches are not useful and it becomes expensive to mostly have them in small enterprises. For OT the physical environment does not allow for a switch like 9500.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
At my organization Cisco Catalyst is used as an interconnecting devices for our complex security solutions. The 9500 Series has excellent performance stability benefits.
-------
Cisco Catalyst se encuentra interconectando una solución de seguridad compleja con excelentes prestaciones de estabilidad desempeño
  • High performance | Desempeño
  • Very stable | Estabilidad
  • Very reliable | Confiabilidad
  • Virtual Stack Wise
  • Precios
  • Stack
Para interconectar dispositivos que necesiten alta velocidad de procesamiento es ideal. // Their ideal use is for interconnecting devices that require a high processing speed.
girgis hady | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
We are using Cisco devices all over our network, and use the Cisco Catalyst 9500 series as our core switch. We use 2 devices with virtual stack to provide high availability and dual connection to each access switch to provide fully redundant connectivity. Also, we use these switches as a DHCP server, NTP server, VTP server to all network switches and users.
  • High performance.
  • High-density ports.
  • Great availability of features.
  • Provide more documentation.
Cisco Catalyst Switches are suitable for campus network to connect users to the network, I prefer Cisco Catalyst 9500 for the core switches and Cisco Catalyst 9200 for the access switches to connect users to it. Catalyst Switches are less appropriate in a data center connectivity due to the high performance needed inside the Data Center, so Nexus switches are better there.
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Incentivized
We are currently using CAT 9500-40X and 9500-32C at our campus and branches. The switches are used at either distribution or core layer.
  • It supports programmability
  • It supports 10, 40, 100 Gig interfaces
  • It can be used as fusion router in the SDA deployment
  • 9500-32C is not supported in the DNA
  • There are some bugs on the stackwise virtual stacking uses. The stacks get splitted and manual reboot is required to fix it
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches is well suited if the requirement is for fiber ports. The Catalyst 9500 Series Switches has only fiber ports. The chip sets on the 9500 series switches are powerful. So, they are recommended on the aggregation layer on the larger deployment at the campus or branches. However, they are not suited if there are requirements for copper ports and traffic load is not huge.
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
I implemented a dual 9500 HA redundancy setup to replace the old 6500's that were being used as the core switches. Upon initial inspection, the Nexus 3k looked to be a better fit for our purpose, however, it came at a very steep price point. Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches was a great alternative as it had all the software-defined network integration that was needed to start the Cisco DNA journey.
  • Throughput.
  • Software-defined.
  • Analytics.
  • Security.
  • Price.
Cisco Catalyst 9500 Series Switches are definitely a campus grade core/distribution switch depending on your speed requirements.
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