Cisco ASR 900 Series Aggregation Services Routers

Cisco ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1 Data Sheet

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The Cisco® ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1 (RSP1) is the powerful centralized network timing, control plane, and data plane engine that powers the Cisco ASR 903 Router (Figure 1). The Cisco ASR 903 RSP1 is designed to address the requirements of service provider converged networks.

Figure 1. Cisco ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1

Route Switch Processor Features

The Cisco ASR 903 RSP1 module contains separate control plane and data plane components. The module contains the main control plane CPU for the Cisco IOS® XE operating system and platform control software. The data plane packet processing and traffic management is performed by the Cisco Carrier Ethernet application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC).

Cisco Carrier Ethernet ASIC

Powered by Cisco Carrier Ethernet ASIC and designed specifically for the needs of service providers, the Cisco ASR 903 Router delivers essential Carrier Ethernet technologies, including hierarchical quality of service (HQoS), IPv4, IPv6, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), and Hierarchical Virtual Private LAN Services (HVPLS). The ASIC provides line-rate performance and supports advanced services including access control list (ACL) and HQoS without affecting performance. This Carrier Ethernet ASIC incorporates innovative traffic management capabilities while providing intelligent packet switching and routing operations.

Service Enhancement

With the Cisco ASR 903 Router, each service is assigned enhanced QoS and security attributes. The ASR 903 Router accomplishes advanced per-traffic-class metering and offers bidirectional packet count and byte count statistics. The service offering is enhanced with operations, administration, and maintenance (OAM) functionality that includes Layer 2 Connectivity Fault Management (CFM), IP service-level agreement (SLA) for Layer 3, and MPLS OAM.

Service Scale

The Cisco ASR 903 Router delivers flexible service scalability in a small footprint. This router delivers high performance and high scale for point-to-point and multipoint VPN services. The HQoS capabilities of the Cisco ASR 903 Router scale to eight queues per service, three levels of scheduling, and buffer sizes capable of accommodating today’s most demanding wireline and wireless applications.

There are two versions of the Cisco ASR 903 RSP1, which provide the same capabilities and throughput, while differing in service scale. The differences in service scale are outlined in Table 4. Mixing of different-scale RSP versions in the same Cisco ASR 903 chassis is not supported.

Clocking and Timing Services

The Cisco ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1 contains the central system clocking and timing functions for the Cisco ASR 903 platform, which are required in a modern unified backhaul network. The route switch processor offer integrated support for the Building Integrated Timing Supply (BITS), 10 MHz, 1 Pulse Per Second (1 PPS) and Time Of Day (TOD) interfaces. The Cisco ASR 903 Series platform also supports synchronous Ethernet (SyncE), IEEE 1588-2008 and can act as the clock source for network clocking of time-division multiplexing (TDM) and SDH/SONET interfaces.

The Cisco ASR 903 Series can act as a IEEE 1588-2008 Ordinary Clock, Boundary Clock, and Master Clock function in an IEEE 1588-2008 timing domain.

High Availability and Modularity

The Cisco ASR 903 Router is a fully modular platform. The design of the router delivers optional intra-chassis hardware redundancy for all hardware components and supports software redundancy with In Service Software Upgrade (ISSU) support when a pair of route switch processors are inserted in the chassis.

With two RSPs inserted in the Cisco ASR 903 Router, one RSP operates in active mode and the other RSP operates in hot standby mode. The Cisco ASR 903 RSP1 is a field replaceable unit (FRU) and can be online inserted and removed (OIR) while the system is operating. The removal or failure of the active RSP results in the automatic switchover to the standby RSP.

Management Interfaces

The Cisco ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1 contains the out of band (OOB) management interfaces for the system. To offer flexibility to access the router, there are a variety of interfaces for management access to the platform. This includes a dual-mode console port that functions as either a USB console or a serial console port. In addition to the serial console access, the Cisco ASR 903 RSP1 contains an Ethernet management port that has no interaction with the actual Carrier Ethernet ASIC traffic. In addition to the OOB control interfaces, there is an USB port to connect USB flash devices for loading Cisco IOS XE Software images and configurations on the platform.

Interface Module Compatibility

The Cisco ASR 903 Router has six interface module slots. There are two types of interface module slots. Four slots (slots 0 to 3) support all of the available interface modules. The remaining two slots (slots 4 and 5) support only the Gigabit Ethernet and TDM interface modules; the 10-Gigabit Ethernet modules are not supported in these slots. Interface Module Slot 5 is limited to a maximum of seven Gigabit Ethernet ports with the Cisco ASR 903 RSP1.

Ethernet Interface Modules and Multiservice Interface Modules

The ASR 903 RSP1 is compatible with the following interface modules.

Cisco ASR 900 Series 1-Port 10GE XFP Interface Module: supports a single 10-Gigabit Ethernet Small Form-Factor Pluggable (XFP) port.

Cisco ASR 900 Series 8-Port Cu Gigabit Ethernet Interface Module: supports eight Copper RJ-45 Gigabit Ethernet ports.

Cisco ASR 900 Series 8-Port SFP Gigabit Ethernet Interface Module: supports eight Gigabit Ethernet Small Form-Factor Pluggable (SFP) ports.

Cisco ASR 900 Series 16-Port T1/E1 Interface Module: supports 16 T1 or E1 ports. The port type is software configurable per interface module; mixing of T1 and E1 ports on a single interface module is not supported.

Cisco ASR 900 Series 4-Port OC3/STM-1 or 1-Port OC12/STM-4 Interface Module: This combination module is designed to be software configurable in four modes: 4xOC-3, 4xSTM-1, 1xOC12, and 1xSTM-4. If the module is configured for 4xOC-3 or 4xSTM-1, then the individual interfaces can be configured to be clear-channel, POS, or channelized in any combination. Support of these modes is software dependent as described in the Cisco IOS XE Software for Cisco ASR 903 Router data sheet.


The Cisco ASR 903 Router is supported in Cisco IOS XE S Software, a modular operating system. Cisco IOS XE Software is designed to provide modular packaging, feature velocity, and powerful resiliency. The software supports Cisco software activation on the Cisco ASR 903 Router. Table 1 describes the two Cisco IOS XE universal consolidated packages supported on the router. The functionality is enforced through the appropriate technology package licenses. The available features and related licensing is described in the Cisco IOS XE Software for Cisco ASR 903 Router data sheet.

Table 1. Universal Cisco IOS XE Software Consolidated Packages for Cisco ASR 903 RSP1

Cisco IOS XE Consolidated Package

Part Number


Cisco ASR 903 Series RSP1 IOS XE Universal


Provides a consolidated software package
Satisfies export requirements for non-cryptographic software

Cisco ASR 903 Series RSP1 IOS XE – No Payload Encryption


Provides a consolidated software package
Includes SSH and SNMPv3 support

Table 2 lists the hardware parts available for Cisco ASR 903 RSP1.

Table 2. Hardware Components for Cisco ASR 903 RSP1

Part Number



ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1, Base Scale


ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1, Base Scale, spare


ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1, Large Scale


ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1, Large Scale, spare

Cisco ASR 903 Accessories


ASR 903 Route Switch Processor Type-A Blank Cover, spare

Product Specifications

Tables 3 through 6 list the product specifications and compliance information for the Cisco ASR 903 Route Switch Processor 1.

Table 3. Cisco ASR 903 Router System Specifications




Power consumption of chassis with 2 power supplies, 1 fan tray and 1 RSP



Power consumption of standby RSP



RSP memory

2 GB

4 GB

Service scale1

Base service scale

Large service scale

Ethernet interface module compatibility




TDM and ATM interface module compatibility



Maximum transmission unit (MTU)

Configurable MTU of up to 9216 bytes, for bridging on Gigabit Ethernet and 10 Gigabit Ethernet

IP version 4 performance

65 Mpps

IP version 6 performance

65 Mpps

Management ports2

Copper 10/100/1000Base-T LAN management port – RJ45 connector port

Console/Aux RS232 serial ports – RJ45 connector port

Console – USB 2.0 type A receptacle connector port

Timing ports

BITS simultaneous input and output (T1/E1) – RJ48 connector port

1PPS input – mini-coax connector port

1PPS output – mini-coax connector port

2.048/10MHz input – mini-coax connector port

2.048/10MHz output – mini-coax connector port

External USB flash memory

Mass storage – USB 2.0 type A receptacle connector port

1. Detailed service scale differences for the main functions is listed in Table 4

2. At one moment in time either the USB console port or the RS232 Serial Console/Aux port can be active. These ports cannot be active concurrently.

Table 4. Maximum Single-Dimensional Service Scale1, 2




MAC addresses



Bridge domains



Ethernet flow points



L3 interfaces



IPv4 routes



IPv6 routes



Multicast routes






MPLS labels



EoMPLS tunnels per system



VPLS instances









Ingress policers



Class maps



Queue counters (packet and byte)



Policer counters (packet and byte)



IPv4 ACL entries3



1. Not all services can be scaled at maximum scale concurrently (multidirectional service scale).

2. The scale numbers are hardware capabilities. The actual scale may be limited in a specific software release and only become available in a future software release.

3. Maximum 500 access control entries per ACL.

Table 5. Environmental Specifications


Cisco ASR 903 Router

Operating environment and altitude

–40ºC to 65ºC operating temperature (DC operation)

–60m to 1800m operating altitude (for full operating temperature range)

Up to 4000m operating altitude (at up to +40ºC temperature)

Relative humidity

5% to 95%, noncondensing

Acoustic noise 1

Acoustic noise peak operation maximum 55 dBA sound pressure level, bystander position for rack mount products at 20ºC operation as measured by ISO 7779 NAIS noise measurement test standard

Acoustic noise peak operation compliant to the Network Equipment Building Standards (NEBS) GR-63-Core Issue 3 sound power level of 78dB at 27ºC operation as measured by the ANSI S12.10/ISO 7779 NAIS noise measurement test standard

Storage environment

Temperature: –40 to +70ºC altitude: 15,000ft (4570m)


Zone 4

1. The above are for normal (nonfailure) operation. When operating with a fan failure, the above may be exceeded.

Table 6. Safety and Compliance




UL 60950-1, 2nd edition
CAN/CSA C22.2 No. 60950-1-07 2nd edition
IEC 60950-1, 2nd edition
EN 60950-1, 2nd edition
AS/NZS 60950.1:2003


FCC CFR47 Part 15 Class A

Emissions compliance

EN55022, class A
CISPR22, class A
ICES-003, class A
EN 300 386, class A
VCCI, class A
KN22, class A
EN61000-3-2 to EN61000-3-3

Immunity compliance

EN 300 386
EN 61000-6-1
EN 50082-1
EN 55024
KN 24
EN 50121-4
EN/KN 61000-4-2 to EN/KN 61000-4-6
EN/KN 61000-4-8
EN/KN 61000-4-11


GR-63-CORE Issue 3
GR-1089-CORE Issue 5
SR-3580 NEBS Level 3


ETS/EN 300 119 Part 4
ETS/EN 300 019 – Storage: Class 1.2, Transportation: Class 2.3, In-Use/Operational: Class 3.2
ETS/EN 300 753

Network synchronization

ANSI T1.101
ITU-T G.813
ITU-T G.823
ITU-T G.824
ITU-T G.703 clause 5
ITU-T G.703 clause 9
ITU-T G.8261/Y.1361
ITU-T G.781
ITU-T G.8262
ITU-T G.8264

1. Notable exceptions: Fans do not have filters, and all cabling is provided through the front panel.

Warranty Information

Find warranty information on at the Product Warranties page.

Service and Support

Cisco offers a wide range of services programs to accelerate customer success. These innovative services programs are delivered through a unique combination of people, processes, tools, and partners, resulting in high levels of customer satisfaction. Cisco Services help you protect your network investment, optimize network operations, and prepare your network for new applications to extend network intelligence and the power of your business. For more information about Cisco Services, refer to Cisco Technical Support Services or Cisco Advanced Services.

Cisco is committed to minimizing your total cost of ownership. Cisco offers a portfolio of technical support services to help ensure that Cisco products operate efficiently, remain highly available, and benefit from the most up-to-date system software. The services and support programs described in Table 7 are available as part of the Cisco Carrier Ethernet Switching Service and Support solution and are available directly from Cisco and through resellers.

Table 7. Service and Support

Advanced Services



Cisco Total Implementation Solutions (TIS), available directly from Cisco

Cisco Packaged TIS, available through resellers

Project management
Site survey, configuration, and deployment
Installation, text, and cutover
Major moves, adds, and changes
Design review and product staging
Supplement existing staff
Help ensure functions meet needs
Mitigate risk

Cisco SP Base Support and Service Provider-Based Onsite Support, available directly from Cisco

Cisco Packaged Service Provider- Based Support, available through resellers

24-hour access to software updates
Web access to technical repositories
Telephone support through the Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC)
Advance Replacement of hardware parts
Facilitate proactive or expedited problem resolution
Lower total cost of ownership by taking advantage of Cisco expertise and knowledge
Minimize network downtime