Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Switches

Cisco Nexus 7700 F3-Series 24-Port 40 Gigabit Ethernet Module Data Sheet

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Product Overview

The Cisco Nexus® 7700 F3-Series 24-Port 40 Gigabit Ethernet Module (referred to as the 7700 F3‑Series module in this document) offers outstanding feature flexibility and wire-rate performance on each port. The module enables the deployment of high-density, low-latency, scalable data center architecture.

Powering Cisco Unified Fabric Architecture

The Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Switches are the foundation of the Cisco® Unified Fabric solution. Designed to meet the requirements of mission-critical data centers, these switches deliver exceptional availability, outstanding scalability, and the proven and comprehensive Cisco NX-OS Software data center switching feature set.

The Cisco Nexus 7700 platform is the latest extension to the 7000 Series modular switches. With more than 83 terabits per second (Tbps) of overall switching capacity, the 7700 platform delivers the highest-capacity 10, 40, and 100 Gigabit Ethernet ports in the industry, with up to 768 native 10-Gbps ports, 384 40-Gbps ports, and 192 100‑Gbps ports. This high system capacity is designed to meet the scalability requirements of the largest cloud environments.

The 7700 platform switches have operation and feature consistency with the existing 7000 Series switches, using
a common system architecture, the same application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) technology, and the same proven NX-OS releases.

The 7700 F3-Series module (Figure 1) is a low-latency, high-performance, high-density 40 Gigabit Ethernet module designed for the 7700 platform to deliver up to 384 wire-rate 40 Gigabit Ethernet ports in a single Cisco Nexus 7700 18-Slot Switch chassis (Table 1).

Figure 1.      Cisco Nexus 7700 F3-Series Module

Table 1.       Cisco Nexus 7700 Platform Switches with 40 Gigabit Ethernet Maximum Port Density

Cisco Nexus 7700 Chassis

Maximum Wire-Rate Port Density

Cisco Nexus 7700 18-Slot Switch


Cisco Nexus 7700 10-Slot Switch


Cisco Nexus 7700 6-Slot Switch


The 7700 F3-Series module is based on the Cisco Nexus F3-Series switch-on-a-chip (SoC) ASIC. This type of design increases performance while lowering the power and cooling requirements of the module. The F3-Series SoC is an innovative ASIC designed by Cisco and powered by a flexible packet engine, which makes it excellent for building the network infrastructure for public and private cloud environments. The F3-Series engine supports all the foundational networking protocols needed to build Layer 2 and Layer 3 networks, but it also can support highly virtualized environments, enabling virtual overlay networking with hardware support for Cisco Virtual Extensible LAN (VXLAN) and Locator/ID Separation Protocol (LISP) technologies. The 7700 F3-Series hardware enables customers to transparently interconnect their data centers with protocols such as Overlay Transport Virtualization (OTV) and Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) and Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS).

The module delivers 1.44 billion packets per second (bpps) of distributed Layer 2 and Layer 3 forwarding and up to 960 Gbps of data throughput. A 7700 18-Slot Switch fully populated with the 7700 F3-Series module can deliver up to 23 bpps and 30.7 terabits per second (Tbps) of switching performance.

Features and Benefits

The 7700 F3-Series module integrates a broad set of data center switching technologies, including industry standards and Cisco’s own innovations. It combines the benefits of classical fabric interface line cards with the advanced routing features of edge interface modules. With this integration, the module provides exceptional investment protection for organizations consolidating their data center environments while migrating to dense multiservice 40 Gigabit Ethernet networks.

   The 7700 F3-Series module is powered by the proven and comprehensive NX-OS feature set. This extremely comprehensive set of Layer 2 and Layer 3 functions makes this module excellent for data center networks, in which density, performance, and continuous system operation are critical.

   The 7700 F3-Series module is a critical enabler of Cisco FabricPath. With FabricPath, organizations can build resilient, flexible, and if needed, massively scalable Layer 2 networks. FabricPath protects enterprises’ investments by allowing existing spanning-tree-based deployments to be connected to a FabricPath network.

   The 7700 F3-Series module can be used in conjunction with the Cisco Nexus 2000 Series Fabric Extenders (FEX). The 2000 Series is designed to simplify data center architecture and operations by dramatically reducing the number of points of management.

   The 7700 F3-Series module supports port breakout. Up to 19 of the 24 physical ports on the module can be configured in breakout mode, each becoming 4 logical and independent 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports. This breakout mode can be configured at any time on any port (up to 19 ports) independently from configuration of other ports and without the need to reload the module. When 19 ports of the module are configured in breakout mode, the other 5 ports remain available for establishing 40 Gigabit Ethernet links. Copper or fiber breakout assemblies are required to enable the physical separation of 10-Gigabit channels.

   The 7700 F3-Series module delivers integrated Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), greatly simplifying the network infrastructure and reducing costs by enabling the deployment of unified data center fabrics to consolidate data center traffic onto a single, general-purpose, high-performance, highly available network. With the 7700 F3-Series module, FCoE can be deployed in director-class modular platforms for the access layer and core of converged networks.

   The 7700 F3-Series module provides support for wire-rate VXLAN, offering the architectural flexibility needed to expand cloud deployments with repeatable pods in different Layer 2 domains. VXLAN can also enable migration of virtual machines between servers across Layer 3 networks.

   The support for advanced data center interconnect (DCI) protocols such as Cisco OTV and VPLS makes the module excellent for helping customers simplify the extension of applications across geographically dispersed data center sites.

   The 7700 F3-Series module supports high-performance MPLS for 40 Gigabit Ethernet data center deployments.

   Support for Cisco LISP enables enterprises and service providers to simplify multihomed routing and facilitates scalable any-to-any WAN connectivity while supporting data center virtual machine mobility.

   The virtual device context (VDC) feature helps enable the virtualization of a single physical device in one
or more logical devices. Each provisioned logical device is configured and managed as if it were a separate physical device.

   The 7700 F3-Series module offers exceptional security with integrated hardware support for:

     Configurable Control-Plane Policing (CoPP), which protects the supervisor CPU from excessive traffic

     Access control list (ACL) counters and logging capability to provide deeper packet visibility

     Layer 2 to Layer 4 ACL for both IPv4 and IPv6 traffic

     Cisco TrustSec® technology and ACL processing for security group tags (SGTs)

Note:    This document describes the capabilities of the 7700 F3-Series module hardware. Please consult your Cisco representative to confirm the appropriate NX-OS release required to enable these features.

Product Specifications

Table 2 lists product specifications for the 7700 F3-Series module. Table 3 lists specifications for Cisco transceivers installed in the module’s Quad Small Form-Factor Pluggable Plus (QSFP+) ports to enable connectivity over the physical medium. Refer to the release notes for up-to-date software version information to see which optics and copper assemblies are supported. Complete information about supported transceivers can be found at

Table 2.       Product Specifications




Product compatibility

Supported in all 7700 platform chassis

Software compatibility

Contact your local account representative for software release availability

Front-panel LEDs

  Status: Green (operational), red (faulty), or orange (module booting)
  Link: Green (port enabled and connected), orange (port disabled), off (port enabled and not connected), or blinking green and orange in conjunction with ID LED blue (port flagged for identification; beacon)
  ID: Blue (operator has flagged this card for identification; beacon) or off (module not flagged)

Programming interfaces

  Scriptable command-line interface (CLI)
  Cisco Data Center Network Manager (DCNM) web services
  Tool Command Language (TCL) Interpreter
  Cisco Embedded Event Manager (EEM)
  Cisco One Platform Kit (OnePK)

Physical Interfaces


24 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet (QSFP+)

Maximum port density

  384 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet in 7700 18-Slot chassis
  192 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet in 7700 10-Slot chassis
  96 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet in 7700 6-Slot chassis

Queues per port

4 ingress, and 8 egress

VOQ buffer

144 MB per module

Jumbo frame support for bridged and routed packets

Up to 9216 bytes


Forwarding performance

1.44 bpps of Layer 2 and Layer 3 forwarding capacity for both IPv4 and IPv6 packets

MAC address entries



4096 simultaneous VLANs per VDC

IPv4 entries


IPv6 entries


Adjacency entries







Physical dimensions

  Occupies one I/O module slot in a 7700 platform chassis
  Dimensions: 1.75 x 15.9 x 21.8 in. (4.4 x 40.39 x 55.37 cm)
  Weight: 17 lb (7.7 kg)

Environmental conditions

  Operating temperature: 32 to 104°F (0 to 40°C)
  Operational relative humidity: 5 to 90%, noncondensing
  Storage temperature: -40 to 158°F (-40 to 70°C)
  Storage relative humidity: 5 to 95%, noncondensing

Regulatory compliance

  EMC compliance
  FCC Part 15 (CFR 47) (USA) Class A
  ICES-003 (Canada) Class A
  EN55022 (Europe) Class A
  CISPR22 (International) Class A
  AS/NZS CISPR22 (Australia and New Zealand) Class A
  VCCI (Japan) Class A
  KN22 (Korea) Class A
  CNS13438 (Taiwan) Class A
  EN300 386

Environmental standards

  NEBS criteria levels*
   SR-3580 NEBS Level 3 (GR-63-CORE and GR-1089-CORE)
  Verizon NEBS compliance*
   Telecommunications Carrier Group (TCG) Checklist
  Century Link NEBS requirements*
   Telecommunications Carrier Group (TCG) Checklist
  ATT NEBS requirements*
   ATT TP76200 level 3
   ETSI 300 019-2-1, Class 1.2 Storage
   ETSI 300 019-2-2, Class 2.3 Transportation
   ETSI 300 019-2-3, Class 3.2 Stationary Use

* Validation in Progress


  UL/CSA/IEC/EN 60950-1
  AS/NZS 60950


The 7700 platform switches come with the standard Cisco 1-year limited hardware warranty

Table 3.       40 Gigabit Ethernet Interface Distances and Options

Cisco 40 Gigabit Ethernet QSFP+ Module

Wavelength (nm)

Fiber and Cable Type

Core Size (microns)/
Modal Bandwidth (MHz*km)***

Connector Type

Cable Distance*









12-fiber MTP/MPO














12-fiber MTP/MPO













LC duplex












12-fiber MTP/MPO








LC Duplex


(X=7 or 10)


Direct-attach copper, active



7 or 10m

(x=7 or 10)


Direct-attach breakout copper, active


QSFP+ to 4 SFP+

7or 10m

(x=1, 2, 3, 5, 7, or 10)


Active optical cable assembly



1, 2, 3, 5, 7, or 10m

(x=1, 2, 3, 5, 7 or 10)


Active Optical breakout Cable assembly


QSFP+ to 4 SFP+

1, 2, 3, 5, 7 or 10m

* Minimum cabling distance of 0.5m for -SR4 and -CSR4 modules, and 2m for -LR4 modules, according to the IEEE 802.3 standard
** Considered an engineered link with a maximum of 1 dB allocated to connectors and splice loss
*** Specified at transmission wavelength

Note:    All Cisco QSFP+ modules and cables except QSFP-40G-CSR4 exceed IEEE specifications, helping ensure a link bit-error rate (BER) of better than 1E-15. QSFP-40G-CSR4 meets IEEE specifications, helping ensure a link BER of better than 1E-12.

Note:    QSFP-40G-SR4 and QSFP-40G-CSR4 interfaces can be converted to four physically independent 10‑Gbps interfaces with the use of an MTP/MPO fiber breakout cable.

Note:    QSFP-40G-SR-BD is a 40G interface for duplex multimode fiber enabling short-reach links over up to 100m.

Ordering Information

To place an order, visit the Cisco Ordering homepage. To download software, visit the Cisco Software Center. Table 4 provides ordering information.

Table 4.       Ordering Information

Product Name

Part Number

Nexus 7700 F3-Series 24-Port 40G Ethernet Module (req. QSFP+ modules)



Service and Support

Cisco offers a wide range of services to help accelerate your success in deploying and optimizing the Cisco Nexus 7700 platform in your data center. Our innovative services are delivered through a unique combination of people, processes, tools, and partners and are focused on helping you increase operating efficiency and improve your data center network. Cisco Advanced Services uses an architecture-led approach to help you align your data center infrastructure with your business goals and provide long-term value. Cisco SMARTnet® Service helps you resolve mission-critical problems with direct access at any time to Cisco network experts and award-winning resources. With this service, you can take advantage of the Cisco Smart Call Home service capability, which offers proactive diagnostics and real-time alerts on your 7700 platform switch. Spanning the entire network lifecycle, Cisco Services helps increase investment protection, optimize network operations, support migration, and strengthen your IT expertise. For more information about Cisco Data Center Services, visit

For More Information

For more information about the Cisco Nexus 7700 platform, visit the product homepage at or contact your local account representative.