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HP 5400R zl2 Series Network Switches Aim for Cisco's Spot

By - Source: Hewlett Packard

HP has launched the 5400 zl2 switch series that's a direct competitor to Cisco's Catalyst 4500E. Steve Brar, Manager of Global Product Marketing at HP Networking, says the company's new offering is packed with innovations that Cisco's solution lacks in order to keep up with customer demands.

HP's 5400R zl2 Switch SeriesHP's 5400R zl2 Switch Series

According to Brar, the new switch series builds upon the original HP 5400 zl2 switch series that was introduced in 2006. The new switches include redundant management modules for high availability, improved OpenFlow performance, increased PoE+ capability to all ports simultaneously, and a faster backplane.

In blog post Brar provides a list of features, revealing that when compared to Cisco's Catalyst 4500E/R+E, the 5400R zl2 provides three times higher throughput in packets per second versus Supervisor 8. This solution also has a 42 percent smaller footprint, as the 5406R zl2 is 4RU and Cisco's 4503E is 7RU. The 5400R zl2 also provides a lifetime warranty whereas Cisco's switch provides a "limited" lifetime warranty.

The list also shows that the 5400R zl2 has a 60 percent lower latency, a 43 percent lower total cost of ownership, and a full PoE+ for up to 288 ports simultaneously. Brar points out that Cisco's solution lacks key features such as OpenFlow 1.3 and 10GBase-T support for 10 GbE over copper. He also claims that the Cisco 4507R+E features an old, slow architecture that's unprepared for rich media.

"HP's 5400R is helping customers modernize their campus infrastructures and migrate away from legacy incumbent vendors that are still pushing aging architectures onto their customers," he writes. "The new HP 5400R zl2 is truly a Cisco Catalyst 4500E 'killer.' HP continues to drive innovations in the campus network that are helping organization derive more business value from their investments."Comparison between Cisco's 4507R+E and HP's 5412RComparison between Cisco's 4507R+E and HP's 5412RHP's 5400R zl2 series includes three models:

  • 5406R zl2 Switch (J9821A) -- six open module spots; dimensions: 17.5(w) x 17.75(d) x 6.9(h) inches;
  • 5412R zl2 Switch (J9822A) -- twelve open module slots; dimensions: 17.5(w) x 17.75(d) x 12.1(h) inches;
  • 5406R-44G-PoE+/2SFP+ (No PSU) v2 zl2 Switch (J9823A) -- four open module slots; dimensions: 17.5(w) x 17.75(d) x 6.9(h) inches.

To read Brar's full blog post, head here; to learn more about the 5400R zl2 series network switches, visit