Cisco Catalyst 4000 Series Switches

Catalyst 4500 Series Optimizes Control for Converged Networks

Table Of Contents




Optimal Control

Scalable Architecture

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Benefits


Multilayer Switched Enterprise Network with Ethernet Backbone

Medium-Sized Enterprise and Enterprise Branch Office Applications

Small/Medium Enterprise and Branch-Office Applications

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Features and Benefits


Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Optimizes Control
of Voice, Video, and Data Traffic for Converged Networks

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series integrates resiliency for advanced control of converged networks.

Figure 1

Cisco Catalyst 4500Series


The Cisco® Catalyst® 4500 Series integrates nonblocking Layers 2 through 4 switching with optimal control, enabling business resilience for medium-sized and large enterprises and metropolitan (metro)Ethernet customers deploying Internet-based business applications. The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series is an important component of Cisco AVVID (Architecture for Voice, Video and Integrated Data). TheCisco Catalyst 4500 Series extends control to the network edge with intelligent network services, including sophisticated quality of service (QoS), predictable performance, advanced security, and comprehensive management. It delivers advanced control with integrated resiliency. Integrated resiliency in both hardware and software minimizes network downtime, helping to ensure workforce productivity, profitability, and customer success. The modular architecture, media flexibility, and expandability of the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series enables a longer deployment life in converged networks, reducing the cost of ownership by minimizing recurring operational expenses, improving return oninvestment (ROI).


In today's highly competitive business environment, a converged network plays a critical part in helping an organization gain a competitive advantage through increased productivity, organizational flexibility, and reduced operational costs. Integration of voice, video, and data onto a single (IP-based) network requires a switching infrastructure that can distinguish each traffic type and handle itaccording to its unique requirements. TheCisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides aswitching infrastructure that, when combined with the Cisco IOS® Software, can deliver advanced functions and control.

Optimal Control

The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides the network infrastructure for Cisco AVVID that is the foundation for all applications that will be integrated to solve business problems. Extending intelligent network services with integrated resiliency leads to control of all traffic types with minimal downtime. The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series delivers this control with:

Integrated resiliency—Network downtime is minimized with redundant supervisor engine capability (Cisco Catalyst 4507R adn 4510R), software-based fault tolerance, and 1+1 power supply redundancy across the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series. Integrated Power over Ethernet (PoE) in all Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series chassis simplifies network design and limits the number of points of failure in an IP telephony implementation.

Sophisticated QoS—Integrated Layers 2 through 4-based QoS and traffic management capabilities classify and prioritize mission-critical and time-sensitive traffic based on 32,000 QoS policy entries. The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series can shape and rate-limit bandwidth-intensive traffic with mechanisms such as input and output policers based on host, network, and application information.

Predictable performance—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series offers up to a 72-Mpps wire-speed forwarding rate in hardware for Layers 2-4 traffic. Switching performance is independent of the number of route entries or advanced Layer 3 services enabled.

Advanced security—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series supports up to 32,000 wire-rate Layers 2 through 4 access list entries, and includes other advanced security capabilities such as user authentication and client security.

Comprehensive management—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series offers Web-based management for the configuration and control of all ports, allowing central management of critical network characteristics such as availability and responsiveness.

Scalable Architecture

As convergence lowers the overall cost of network ownership and simplifies administration and maintenance through the elimination of separate voice, video, and data infrastructures, it makes sense for companies to seek these qualities in the network infrastructure itself. The modular architecture of the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides the scalability and flexibility to eliminate the need for multiplatform deployments, minimizing maintenance expenses. Now with integrated resiliency, the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series can increase workforce productivity, profitability, and customer success to all corporations implementing converged network infrastructures.

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series

The next-generation Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series includes Cisco Catalyst chassis: Cisco Catalyst 4510R (ten slots) the Cisco Catalyst 4507R (seven slots), Cisco Catalyst 4506 (six slots), and Cisco Catalyst 4503 (three slots). Integrated resiliency enhancements offered in the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series include 1+1 supervisor engine redundancy (Cisco Catalyst 4507R and 4510R), integrated PoE power for IP telephony, software-based fault tolerance, and 1+1 power supply redundancy. Integrated resiliency in both hardware and software minimizes network downtime, helping to ensure workforce productivity, profitability, and customer success.

The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides a common architecture, taking advantage of legacy Cisco Catalyst 4000 Series line cards scaling to 384 ports of 10/100 or 100BASE-FX Fast Ethernet, or 384 ports of 10/100/1000BASE-T or 1000BASE-LX Gigabit Ethernet. Offering compatibility with legacy Cisco Catalyst 4000 Series line cards and supervisor engines, the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series enables an extended window of deployment for the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series in converged networks.

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Benefits

The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides advanced, high-performance solutions for enterprise wiring closets, small backbones, Layer 3 distribution points, and integrated branch-office solutions. Benefits include:

Performance—Delivering advanced switching solutions that scale bandwidth as ports are added, the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series solution is powered by leading-edge application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) technology that offers wire-speed Layers 2 and 3 10/100 or gigabit switching. Offering modular supervisor flexibility with complete line card compatibility, Layer 2 switching can scale up to 96 Gbps, 72 Mpps. Based on Cisco Express Forwarding, Layers 3 and 4 switching can also scale up to 96 Gbps, 72 Mpps.

Port density—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series meets network element connectivity requirements of up to 384 copper or fiber Fast Ethernet or Gigabit Ethernet ports in a chassis. The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series supports theindustry's highest-density 10/100/1000 autosensing, autonegotiating Gigabit Ethernet from the network edgedirectly to desktop computers. The hot-swappable, modular, easy-to-use switching solution of the Cisco Catalyst4500 Series reduces complexity and easily supports the changing desktop environments of today's networks.

Supervisor engine redundancy—The Cisco Catalyst 4507R and 4510R supports 1+1 supervisor engine redundancy for integrated resiliency. Redundant supervisor engines help to ensure that network downtime is minimized. Minimal network downtime facilitates business continuance and increased employee productivity.

Power over Ethernet (PoE)—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 supports the 802.3af standard for PoE on 10/100 or 10/100/1000 ports with new line cards allowing customers to provide PoE to 802.3af compliant devices including telephones, wireless base stations, video cameras, and other appliances. PoE makes it possible to place devices in unique locations without having to provide new outlets and costly electrical circuits. Moreover, PoE allows businesses to isolate critical devices on a single power system-enabling the entire system to be supported by UPS backup. All new Catalyst PoE line cards can support 15.4W of power per port simultaneously. Not only do the cards support the IEEE standard, including the optional power classifications, the Cisco prestandard power implementation is also supported to ensure backward compatibility with existing Cisco powered devices. The cards are compatible with any Catalyst 4500 Series chassis and Supervisor Engine. Most importantly, the Catalyst 4500 Series has the power supplies and accessories to support 15.4W per port on every port simultaneously in any fully loaded chassis.

Advanced security—Enabling security features such as 802.1x, access control lists (ACLs), Secure Shell (SSH) Protocol, Port Security, Dynamic ARP Inspection (DAI), IP Source Guard and Private Virtual LANs (PVLANs) on the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series enhances control and flexibility in the network. By enabling these features selectively or collectively, a network administrator can prevent unauthorized access to servers or applications, allow different people to use the same PC and have different capabilities, prevent hackers from stealing usernames and passwords to access switches, or prevent a deliberate or accidental broadcast storm.

Cisco IOS Software network services—Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series switches provide mature enterprise Layers 2 and 3 features capable of enhancing corporate networks. These features meet the advanced networking demands of medium-sized and large enterprise businesses because they have been improved based on years of customer feedback.

Consistent software architecture—Because of the consistent Cisco Catalyst software and user interfaces, customers can take advantage of their knowledge base and continue to grow their infrastructures using a combination of Cisco Catalyst 2950, 3550, 3750, 4500, and 6500 series members.

Investment protection—The flexible modular architecture of the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides cost-effective interface upgrades for desktop connections in the wiring closet or the branch-office backbone. Customers deploying the Cisco Catalyst 4503 and 4506 with the Supervisor Engine II that desire higher performance and enhanced features can seamlessly upgrade to the Supervisor Engine II-Plus, IV, or V. Compatible sparing between Cisco Catalyst 4003, 4006, and 4500 chassis provides commonality of power supplies and switching line cards, lowering the overall deployment, migration, and support costs.

Functionally transparent line cards—Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series systems can easily upgrade all system ports to higher-layer switching functions by simply adding a new supervisor engine such as the Supervisor Engine II-Plus, IV, or V. Higher-layer functional enhancements are possible on all system ports without replacing existing linecards and wiring, unlike conventional switching products where complete equipment upgrades are typical during migration. This architecture advantage extends the useful deployment life of Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series line cards.

Cisco AVVID integration—Power over Ethernet line cards, combined with the access gateway module (AGM) that integrates Cisco CallManager voice services, enable the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series to support Cisco AVVID inthe enterprise headquarters and branch office.

Gigabit to the desktop—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series already provides numerous 1000-Mbps desktop and server switching solutions. The scope of the gigabit solutions of the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series system is easily extended to the desktop, with 48- and 24-port triple-speed autosensing and autonegotiating 10/100/1000BASE-T line cards for the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series. The triple-speed 48- and 24-port modules, with autosensing technology, provide wiring-closet investment protection by allowing Fast Ethernet desktops to migrate to Gigabit Ethernet in the future without replacing the line cards.

Hardware-based multicast—Protocol Independent Multicast (PIM), dense and sparse mode, Internet Group Management Protocol (IGMP), and Cisco Group Management Protocol support standards-based and Cisco product-enhanced efficient multimedia networking without compromising performance.

Shared-memory architecture—The low-latency, centralized, shared-memory switching fabric architecture delivers leading-edge, wire-speed broadcast and multicast capabilities, eliminating any possibility of head-of-line blocking.

Manageability—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series is supported by the CiscoWorks product line, which provides innovative tools to centrally manage critical network characteristics such as availability, responsiveness, resilience, and security for the intelligent switching infrastructure. A common modular QoS command-line interface (CLI) (MQC) simplifies the creation of policy traffic maps and delivers a consistent interface across large and small Cisco Catalyst switches. Network operations are enhanced with flexible Web-, graphical user interface (GUI)-, and CLI-based management alternatives. Best of all, behind every Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series switch are award-winning Cisco service and support solutions.

Cisco NetFlow Services—The Cisco NetFlow Services Card for the Supervisor Engine IV supports statistics capture in hardware for flow-based and VLAN-based statistics monitoring. This data can be exported, collected, and analyzed for network traffic accounting, usage-based network billing, network planning, network monitoring, and data mining capabilities for both service provider and enterprise customers.

Bandwidth protection for mission-critical applications—When deploying the Supervisor Engine II-Plus, IV, or V, there is no degradation of forwarding performance with QoS or Security features enabled; the Catlyst 4500 Series platform continues to forward at full line rate.

Fiber to the desktop—The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series 24- and 48-port 100BASE-FX line cards offer the security and resiliency features of fiber-optic cable plants, making them ideal for networks with concerns for distance limitations, intrusion, or radio frequency interference. Enterprise customers or government agencies that process confidential information or offer e-commerce will appreciate the security benefits of these line cards.


Multilayer Switched Enterprise Network with Ethernet Backbone

Today's leading-edge network designs use a combination of Layer 2 and 3 services in the wiring closet (Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series); and Layer 3 routing in the distribution and core layers (Cisco Catalyst 4500 or 6500 series). The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series supports IP-only routing in hardware (IPX and AppleTalk in software) with the Supervisor Engine IV, and V and can be deployed in low-density distribution points in the enterprise network.

The distribution layer Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series switches uses Cisco Express Forwarding routing engine, capable of scaling up to 96 Gbps at 72 Mpps (on the Supervisor Engine V). This enables millions of packets-per-second throughput of Layer 3 switching performed in hardware, with no penalty for header prefix lengths.

Figure 2

Large Enterprise Network with Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Switches

Cisco Catalyst enterprise solution advantages:

VLAN trunking maximizes uplink usage

ASIC-based Layer 3 performance equals Layer 2 performance

Mature Hot Standby Router Protocol (HSRP) provides Layer 3 redundancy

Cisco UplinkFast, IEEE 802.3s, and IEEE 802.3w in the wiring closets provide Layer 2 resilience

Traffic differentiation and service agreements benefit from the rich multilayer QoS—including policing (ingress and egress), classification, shaping, sharing, marking, and advanced scheduling—implemented in hardware with advanced parallel pipeline processing (Supervisor Engines II-Plus, IV, and V)

Medium-Sized Enterprise and Enterprise Branch Office Applications

Cisco now offers a medium-sized enterprise design alternative with the introduction of the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Supervisor IV and V, meeting the needs of value-conscious customers seeking a flexible and scalable LAN solution. Optimized for wiring closets for medium-sized enterprises or for education customers, the Supervisor Engine IV/V provides the performance and features to handle today's and tomorrow's network applications. The Supervisor Engine IV/V delivers nonblocking Layer 2 through 4 services to power resilient, intelligent multilayer switching solutions for converged data, voice, and video networks.

Figure 3

Cisco Catalyst Medium-Sized Enterprise Solution

Small/Medium Enterprise and Branch-Office Applications

The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series provides an ideal branch-office solution capable of meeting the needs of both small and large operations, as well as small enterprise applications. The Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Supervisor Engine II-Plus adds enhanced Layer 3 switching capabilities and gigabit wire-speed performance, allowing for deployment as a branch-office backbone. Cisco IOS Software provides stable interconnection between other switches and WAN routers. This is illustrated in Figure 4 with a separate LAN switch and WAN router working together as a branch-office solution.

Figure 4

Small Enterprise and Branch-Office Applications

Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Features and Benefits

Table 1  Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series Features, Functions, and Benefits 


Modular 3-, 6-, 7-, and 10-slot Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series chassis

Supports Supervisor Engine (up to 2 on the Cisco Catalyst 4507R and 4510R), power supplies with integrated PoE

Provides a common architecture with advanced integrated resiliency that can be standardized for campus-wide intranet needs

Redundant supervisor engines (CiscoCatalyst 4507R and 4510R withSupervisor IV, II-Plus, or V only)

Provides dual supervisor engines with subminute failover

Minimizes network downtime that helps to ensure business continuance and increased productivity

Fault-tolerant, load-sharing power supplies

Supports 1 or 2 power supplies

Increases reliability using multiple power supplies in a fault-tolerant configuration

Hot-swappable power supplies and switching modules

Enables hot insertion and extraction for changes and maintenance any time without bringing down your system

Increases reliability by reducing downtime

Flexible switching modules—standards-based, autosensing, and autonegotiating

Offers numerous interface choices: 10/100-Mbps Ethernet and 10/100/1000- or 1000-Mbps Gigabit Ethernet

Accommodates IP campus LAN bandwidth growth, providing easy migration while future-proofing the network

28-Gbps capacity backplane (CiscoCatalyst 4503)

Forwards more than 18 million 64-byte Ethernet packets per second

Meets the throughput demands of a fully populated system with all interfaces operating at wire speed

64-Gbps capacity backplane (CiscoCatalyst 4506 and 4507R)

Provides enough capacity to forward wire-rate, nonblocking 48Mpps

Meets the worst-case throughput demands of a fully populated system with all interfaces operating at wire speed (nonblocking fabric requires Supervisor Engine II-Plus, IV, or V)

96-Gbps capacity backplane (CiscoCatalyst 4510R)

Provides enough capacity to forward wire-rate, nonblocking 72Mpps and supports up to 8 interface modules

Nonblocking high density application

Integrated Cisco IOS Software enhanced Layer 3 switching (Supervisor Engine IV and V)

Provides ASIC-based IP routing at gigabit speeds (Open Shortest Path First [OSPF], Enhanced IGRP [EIGRP], Intermediate System to Intermediate System [IS:IS], and Border Gateway Protocol [BGP])

Offers Layer 3 subnet control of network traffic; mature and proven routed protocols

Multilayer QoS

Provides QoS for both Layer 2 CoS and Layer 3 ToS, traffic shaping, sharing, policing, and congestion avoidance with Dynamic Buffer Limiting (DBL)

Provides centralized control of prioritization of network-wide traffic; easily creates and manages policies to protect mission-critical applications

Ingress and egress policing (Supervisor Engines II-Plus, IV and V)

Identifies packets at entrance and can reclassify/remark at exit on a per port basis

Provides granular traffic control by user defined traffic classifications in order to guarantee QoS policy.

WAN integration

Allows for integration of LAN and WAN interfaces on the same platform

Simplifies network design; lowers cost of ownership

Cisco AVVID integration

Integrates voice, video, and data into 1 campus infrastructure

Lowers cost of ownership, improved productivity, investment protection, scalability, and performance

Integrated Power over Ethernet (PoE)

Provides power to devices attached to PoE enabled Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series switch ports. Devices include IP phones, access points, video cameras and other Cisco or IEEE 802.3af compliant appliances.

Provides a single wire to the desktop; no cubicle uninterruptible power supply (UPS)

Dynamic Trunking Protocol and 802.1Q

Dynamically configures trunk ports between Cisco Catalyst switches

Minimizes VLAN trunk configuration, maximizes plug-and-play capabilities

Load-balancing via spanning-tree priority on parallel Layer 2 trunks

Assigns spanning-tree priority on a per-VLAN basis

Provides increased throughput and redundancy between Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series switches

Multicast switching

Provides hardware-based multicasting replication

Provides standards-based multicasting; with a forwarding performance that is line rate

Centralized shared-memory architecture

Delivers up to 72-Mpps, low-latency, low-cost switching for wiring-closet and branch-office backbone applications; full local and remote management

Provides a completely manageable switching system solution that delivers high performance with the capacity to handle high port density with no head-of-line blocking

IP architecture

IP frame-switching backplane accommodates Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, and Gigabit Ethernet

Delivers a single-system platform solution for all current desktop switching needs, with modular flexibility for future technology protection from LAN to WAN

Multilayer switching

Supports Layer 2 (MAC), Layer 3 (IP address), and Layer 4 (TCP/UDP port) switching

Provides desktop switching and integrated enhanced routing functions (Supervisor Engines IV and V) in the wiring closet, or as a small enterprise backbone solution

Multiple queues on every port interface

Provides multiple queue classification and scheduling of network traffic on a packet-by-packet basis

Differentiates network traffic to improve traffic control and latency; enables sophisticated QoS for superior data, voice, and video traffic

Cisco Discovery Protocol

Provides automated switch and router neighbor discovery

Simplifies configuration management and enables a higher level of Cisco IOS Software-based network services

Standards compliance

Provides industry-standard architecture support

Offers multivendor interoperability

4096 VLANs

Helps to ensure that numerous switched VLANs are available for enterprise networks; enables users to select interfaces on multiple switches, network-wide, to create logical LANs

Eases network administration by enabling users to be logically grouped together, regardless of physical interface location, for performance and security considerations; provides VLAN capability without forcing users to invest in new backbone technology

Switched VLAN trunks

Supports multiple VLANs between switches across any Fast Ethernet VLAN using the 802.1Q protocol (or ISL with Supervisor Engine II-Plus, IV, or V)

Allows for enterprise-wide VLANs

VLAN Trunk Protocol (VTP)

Distributes VLAN configuration information

Integrates Fast Ethernet VLANs

Comprehensive Switched Network Management and Security

Embedded Remote Monitoring (RMON)

Provides four RMON groups on all ports:





Delivers efficient and effective workgroup troubleshooting tools

Furnishes analysis tools to help managers tune network performance

Helps identify heavy network users as candidates to move to dedicated or higher-speed ports

Proactively monitors the switched internetworking centralized management using CiscoWorks solutions

Industry standards-based

Enhanced Switch Port Analyzer (SPAN)

Allows for monitoring of a single port or multiple (VLAN) ports via a single monitor port

Enables managers to use existing network analyzers to troubleshoot switched internetworking

Preserves the network visibility that might otherwise be lost by switches that do not support SPAN

Delivers an analysis path into a company's VLAN architecture

Remote SPAN

Allows monitoring of multiple switches across the network from a single switch

Reduces the number of analyzers necessary to monitor networks

Full Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) management (for Ethernet Management Information Base [MIB], MIB II, VTP, and system extensions)

Enables the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series to be managed from any SNMP-based management station

Eases management from installed network management platforms

Extends VLAN configuration to SNMP management software

802.1x for identity-based network services

Using the 802.1x protocol with Cisco enhancements, the network grants privileges based on user logon information, regardless of the user's location or device

Allows different people to use the same PC and have different capabilities; ensures that users only get their assigned privileges no matter how they are logged onto the network—preventing unauthorized access

ACL feature

Restricts users to designated areas of the network, blocking unauthorized access to all other applications and information

Prevents unauthorized access to servers and applications; allows designated users to access-specified servers

Private VLAN feature

Prevents users from seeing traffic generated by someone else on the same switch

Helps to ensure privacy for users on the same switch

Password-protected administration interface

Requires password for local or remote access via Telnet or SSH

Provides protection from unauthorized configuration changes

Local (in-band) management

Supervisor engine has an EIA/TIA-232 interface for modem or console terminal connection

Manages the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series from a directly attached, low-cost terminal or PC

Remote (out-of-band) management through SNMP sets or Telnet (client) connection

Accessible through any switched interface

Manages Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series switches from anywhere in the network

Management console


Provides easy-to-use ASCII text interface that requires no special applications

Takes advantage of support staff's Cisco Catalyst knowledge

Onboard Flash memory for Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) download and upload of operating software

Remotely downloads new revisions of an operating system without hardware changes

Reduces cost of administering software upgrades by providing centralized network management capability

Removable Compact Flash memory (Supervisor Engines II-Plus, IV, and V)

Allows Cisco IOS Software images and configuration-setting storage

Supports centralized corporate administration with easy distribution of configuration and software standards across the enterprise

Onboard hardware diagnostics and LEDs

The status LED on each module shows successful completion and minor and major failures of power-up diagnostics; link-good LEDs show the status of any interface; and switch-load LEDs show backplane usage

Confirms module operation and enables easy visual inspection

Improves access to switched network usage

Continues mature and proven Cisco Catalyst switch interfaces pioneered in earlier Cisco products

Switch Management Applications

CiscoWorks portfolio

Provides a comprehensive set of functions aimed at monitoring, troubleshooting, and configuring intelligent switching infrastructures

Offers superior, efficient management of the Cisco Catalyst 4500 Series, assuring increased security and control

CiscoView application

Provides an intuitive GUI that supports chassis physical view, configuration, performance monitoring, and minor troubleshooting

Simplifies switched internetworking management; the integrated management solution provides the user with one tool for determining system status