Home-lab: growth needed, suggestions.

DeathmageDeathmage Posts: 2,496Banned
Hey guys,

So my home lab has a Cisco 1721 edge router and it starting to become a performance crutch, as-well as two 3550 switches and 6 2950's as-well as two 2600 routers, the whole Cisco lab is 10/100 and it's becoming an issue, let me explain.

I want to phase out the 2600's but still use them for OSPF testing, just phase them out of the primary routing topology. I want to move away from serial (don't think serial is used much in production anymore and to be as accurate to real-world as possible I want to remove it) and go more fastethernet for inter-vlan routing and I know the 3550/3750's can handle that perfectly fine.

I want to order two 3750's but I'm curious what is the next variation higher than the 3750 that offers gigabit, like all of these switches are 10/100 and I'd really like to get a gigabit L3 distribution switch from Cisco heck maybe even a L2 gigabit switch would do just would need static routing so a L2+.

See right now my esxi cluster is connected to the 2950's (1 vlan per windows domain) and 3550's (two 2950's per, mimicing two networks in two corporate locations) communicating to each other inside of the ESXi cluster (got 12 Gigabit ports per Dell R610), basically I've made 4 different windows domains that live in 4 different lans but residing on just two hosts but it's all sitting on 10/100 mbit fabric at the core. Sure 100mbit is sufficient for a lab but I like to be as true to the real-deal as possible.

The iSCSI fabric is sitting on a twin bonded connection uplink (per server) to a HP 2910al 24 port switch, so that's not a bottleneck at the moment. vSAN is being used (got 6.5 TB's icon_lol.gif aggregated), have 64 GB SSD's in each R610 on one bond and the other bond goes to my NAS for normal VMFS storage outside of vSAN.

Soooo...I'm thinking of replacing the Cisco 1721 with a Cisco 3825 router since it has way more expansion wic slots (kind of getting gitty over what I can do with it) and native twin gigabit but as mentioned above would like you also acquire one true gigabit L3 Cisco switches but I'm not sure what variation of Cisco offers this that is higher than the 3750's but not like super new like the Nexus switches if that's possible. I don't really deal with cisco much so I don't know the models of Cisco switches and Googling it is less than helpful.

So with this being said, moving forward in my cisco studies with me wanting to get my CCNP DC after my CCNA R&S (long-term) will a 3825 be sufficient expansion-and-labbing wise to use as a viable upgrade as a edge router that connects to my internal core network and provide the services I'm looking for for the Cisco lab and VMware. Also need some recommendations for a some somewhat cheap L3 gigabit Cisco switch that would be a MDF.

Thanks guys for your input!!!!

Comments

  • PristonPriston Posts: 999Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    I'd say any of the 2800 and 3800 series routers are a good pick.

    For gigabit switches, have you looked into the 3560G, 3750G or 2960G?
    A.A.S. in Networking Technologies
    A+, Network+, CCNA
  • DeathmageDeathmage Posts: 2,496Banned
    Priston wrote: »
    I'd say any of the 2800 and 3800 series routers are a good pick.

    For gigabit switches, have you looked into the 3560G, 3750G or 2960G?

    I have not, didn't know the names. thanks! :)
  • ninjaturtleninjaturtle Posts: 245Member
    Priston wrote: »
    I'd say any of the 2800 and 3800 series routers are a good pick.

    For gigabit switches, have you looked into the 3560G, 3750G or 2960G?
    I totally agree. I have 4 2811s in my lab, and 1 1841. The 2811s handle my labs quite well, and the cost has definitely dropped. A colleague at work actually just picked up a 3821 for $100. So just look for the deals. If you care about noise then you'll have to pay a bit more, and go with the 1841s.
    Current Study Discipline: CCIE Data Center
    Cisco SEAL, Cisco SWAT, Cisco DeltaForce, Cisco FBI, Cisco DoD, Cisco Army Rangers, Cisco SOCOM .ιlι..ιlι.
  • philz1982philz1982 Posts: 978Member
    The equiv of the 3750 if I was dealing with a customer is the 3850 but the full PoE 48 port are 10k list.
  • ninjaturtleninjaturtle Posts: 245Member
    philz1982 wrote: »
    The equiv of the 3750 if I was dealing with a customer is the 3850 but the full PoE 48 port are 10k list.
    I'm pretty sure we are talking ebay here, as this is for a home lab. So no list prices. icon_lol.gif

    Buuuut.... a 3850 48port w/ PoE is about $5,500 though if your mad to get one at home. Used of course, but comes w/ a 1yr warranty.
    Current Study Discipline: CCIE Data Center
    Cisco SEAL, Cisco SWAT, Cisco DeltaForce, Cisco FBI, Cisco DoD, Cisco Army Rangers, Cisco SOCOM .ιlι..ιlι.
  • DeathmageDeathmage Posts: 2,496Banned
    Well I do have one massive switch I got from a friend but it's literally MASSIVE!

    I want to keep it Cisco but if it's going to cost a sizable chunk I'll just see what I can do for a decent price like $300 a switch....

    As far as the MASSIVE switch is concern I have a 156 port HP Procurve 5421zl but kind of don't want to rack it size I'm afraid my Skeletek would keel over from it's weight. icon_wink.gif[FONT=Arial,][h=2][/h][/FONT]
  • ninjaturtleninjaturtle Posts: 245Member
    Deathmage wrote: »
    Well I do have one massive switch I got from a friend but it's literally MASSIVE!

    I want to keep it Cisco but if it's going to cost a sizable chunk I'll just see what I can do for a decent price like $300 a switch....

    As far as the MASSIVE switch is concern I have a 156 port HP Procurve 5421zl but kind of don't want to rack it size I'm afraid my Skeletek would keel over from it's weight. icon_wink.gif
    I love my Skeletek rack!! Yea, that would be a bad day if it tipped over. You'll want to get a full rack. A colleague at work who's buying all that Cisco gear, he actually just bought a full 24U rack for $99.00 dollars. It was going for about $300 on ebay, but this company wanted to get rid of it because they lost the key. We looked online and found the keys for $15.00. I don't think his wife is happy to have that rack in the living room though ...oh well :)

    Looks like you don't care about your electricity bill. Me either! I just love having my lab powered up and running. I never turn it off, as I treat my office like a little data center. It's all enterprise gear, no home user crap. It's an expensive hobby/career, but that's just it. It's both hobby and career for us, right!?

    Keep adding to your lab ...feeeeed the addiction!! icon_cool.gif
    Current Study Discipline: CCIE Data Center
    Cisco SEAL, Cisco SWAT, Cisco DeltaForce, Cisco FBI, Cisco DoD, Cisco Army Rangers, Cisco SOCOM .ιlι..ιlι.
  • DeathmageDeathmage Posts: 2,496Banned
    I love my Skeletek rack!! Yea, that would be a bad day if it tipped over. You'll want to get a full rack. A colleague at work who's buying all that Cisco gear, he actually just bought a full 24U rack for $99.00 dollars. It was going for about $300 on ebay, but this company wanted to get rid of it because they lost the key. We looked online and found the keys for $15.00. I don't think his wife is happy to have that rack in the living room though ...oh well :)

    Looks like you don't care about your electricity bill. Me either! I just love having my lab powered up and running. I never turn it off, as I treat my office like a little data center. It's all enterprise gear, no home user crap. It's an expensive hobby/career, but that's just it. It's both hobby and career for us, right!?

    Keep adding to your lab ...feeeeed the addiction!! icon_cool.gif

    Wow I love my lab but it goes to sleep during the week, only weekends.

    I also got the 24U-wide Skeletek rack; it's got the back rack for the servers. Will probably need to extend the rack upward, running out of space between the core network HP Procurve, punchdown, and 3 1U cable management and the 13U's worth of Cisco stuff and then 6U is being used by the Dual R610's and the Optiplex 9010 on top of the top R610. I think I got maybe 6U's left of free space before that sucker is loaded up. MY Raspberry/Banana PI's are in the rear on top (w/ sticky velcro) of my 2910al since the thing is so long it's like a patio.

    But yes I'll need to grow the rack, it's like an addiction....I've soooo out grown the capacity of the CCENT/CCNA study material at this point, now I'm just being a bloody procrastinator and not getting serious with my studying and just take the exam. subnetting is why I haven't taken the exam; I learn to do it and practice for like 2 week get bored and then stop practicing and semi-forget it as I'm playing with the lab. See I only subnet when I need to make the subnets. I know the /24 commands by heart now but subnetting in my brain forget it, and normally I'm just building the CLi in the switches/routers and not subnetting, lol!!!!

    One of these days I'm sitting the dam exams. MY passion is IT all the way around, my problem is I love being a jack-of-all-trades, so I'm always tinkering. but yes it's my passion and career. Some leave work at the door, I bring it with me. The only difference at home I can break things without worry, but hey proper backups are key; that's what countless externals or a Raspberry PI TFTP server are for! icon_wink.gif
  • philz1982philz1982 Posts: 978Member
    I'm pretty sure we are talking ebay here, as this is for a home lab. So no list prices. icon_lol.gif

    Buuuut.... a 3850 48port w/ PoE is about $5,500 though if your mad to get one at home. Used of course, but comes w/ a 1yr warranty.
    I said list not actually cost.
  • inscom.brigadeinscom.brigade Posts: 400Member
    I just built a pc,xeon e3-1245 v3 3.40GHz, with 32g mem. it runs 20 c7206 routers, & 4 XR
    12000. Cpu usage idles at about 17%, When everything is running, ospf,ospfv3,isis,bgp,vpnv4,vpnv6,mpls, mpls-te,pim,multicast,,, the cpu usage climbs, to around 55%.
    Mltiport nic's in the PC connect to real cisco switch's. I don't even turn on my l routers anymore thy just sit their. If i were in the market for a switch, I might get a 3750, because the have 10g sfp ports.
    The new cisco VIRL may be an option also.
    Racks are cool but VM's rule! I could run a ASA vm to my modem, and you wouldn't know the ASA was a VM; I plan to do that as soon as I complete this next cert, & have some free time.
  • DeathmageDeathmage Posts: 2,496Banned
    so I ran into a problem last night. I don't have anymore room for the 5th 3750G switch after installing the 4th one last night. I need to order a expansion for the Skeletek rack! - I may retire some of the 2950's but I'm not sure.

    I also have a Cisco 3825 that I need to mount and a 2nd Banana PI to play with (it's going to be my dedicated DHCP server for the home-LAN) , but here is my most recent picture of the rack:

    yes I duct taped my Sonicwall to the rack, the dam thing was getting too hot sitting ontop of the Arris 300 Mbit cable modem.

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