The Cisco Nexus or the Juniper EX Series?

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Great Lakes Computer, a 25-year-old, billion dollar Elite Juniper Networks reseller, published the results from a side by side comparison between Juniper’s EX8200 and Cisco’s new Nexus 7000 series switch.

Juniper University

Hosted by Great Lakes Computer, Juniper University, is a monthly series comparing Juniper products to their Cisco counterparts. Juniper EX8200 vs Cisco Nexus Data Sheet.

2010 Juniper University Course Schedule:
May 19th - Juniper SRX vs Cisco ASA
June 15th - Juniper EX2200 vs Cisco Catalyst 2960G ASA
July 20th - Juniper EX4200 vs Cisco Catalyst 3750G
August 18th - Juniper EX3200 vs Cisco Catalyst 3560G
September 21st - Juniper EX8200 vs Cisco Nexus 7000
October 19th - Juniper SRX for the branch vs Legacy Cisco 3 box architecture
November 16th - Juniper JUNOS vs Cisco IOS
December 14th - Juniper J-Care vs Cisco SmartNET
The Results - A case study of a 100% Juniper network

About Juniper’s EX8200:
Overview: Juniper has been in backbone and provider networks for over 11 years. The EX8200 is the flagship of Juniper’s EX series line of switches. With a full product portfolio all running one JUNOS operating system version, Juniper gives customers a simplified network from the WAN to the core and right on down to the wireless network.

The Good: Lower price points, less power consumption, one operating system, very reasonable maintenance and support costs with better overall performance than Cisco’s Nexus.

The Bad: It’s not Cisco. If you are not familiar with JUNOS, it will require learning a new operating system.

About Cisco’s Nexus 7000:

Overview: The Nexus 7000 series is Cisco’s newest core and datacenter switch offering. Announced in January 2009, it is designed to consolidate IP, storage and inter-process communication (IPC). The Nexus uses the new and unproven NX-OS operating system.

The Good: It is Cisco – With 80% market share, it’s safe to assume you can leverage Nexus features while easily integrating the NX-OS into your environment.

The Bad: You’ll pay a hefty price tag for it. Its overall performance is lower and its power consumption is higher than Juniper’s EX8200 series. The Nexus 7000 uses Cisco’s NX-OS operating system, increasing the product’s complexity and raising operating costs.

Conclusion: New operating systems aside, we took a hard look at the performance specs and, in the end, it was no contest. We chose Juniper. The bottom line was better performance with lower overall operating costs.

“There has been a lot of hype around the Cisco Nexus. What’s driving this is the unprecedented demand for bandwidth and network managers on a quest to find a solution. Since Nexus runs NX-OS, IT will be introducing a new operating system into their environment. If you are going to introduce a new operating system anyway, this is a great opportunity for data centers to leverage Juniper’s flagship EX8200 and the JUNOS operating system.”

People interested in learning more about Juniper Networks can sign up for Juniper University, where they can request remote virtual product demos in Great Lakes Computer's "Juniper Lab", or request hands on Juniper demo units. Contact Great Lakes Computer on the web or by phone at 877-488-2587.

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