back to article Juniper jumps into Ethernet switch game

Juniper Networks has finally decided to go after the Ethernet switch business. The routing specialist today unveiled a new line of Ethernet gear that will compete with Cisco and others. Juniper is so proud of the fresh systems that its entire homepage has been taken over with Ethernet marketing madness. (Rather comically, we're …


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  1. sam

    Oh God

    Won't somebody think of the Techies!

    We'll now have to learn a whole new language other than Cisco's IOS standard when our directors decide Juniper might be a good idea to implement......

  2. Anonymous Coward

    The switch is ON too late

    looks good, but, about 5 years too late and yet another switch in an already overcrowded market

  3. Simon

    Sooo expensive

    Nice to see they've gone for Cisco style reassuringly expensive pricing plus a load of security features that will be a support nightmare if implemented.

    Per port costs for 10 gig should be going down not up - what are Cisco and Juniper thinking?

  4. Glen Turner


    "We'll now have to learn a whole new language other than Cisco's IOS standard when our directors decide Juniper might be a good idea to implement......"

    Cisco IOS a standard? I must have missed the news from ISO. Ahh, you mean in the sense that IBM's JCL was once the typical way of running a program, although I notice I don't use JCL much anymore :-)

    Seriously, I use both Cisco and Juniper and the commit/rollback and "move" features of the JUNOS configuration language just rock. Those features are also in Cisco's next-generation IOS XR, but you won't be seeing that on switches.

    There is a learning curve with the JUNOS language, mainly with the odd way used to edit the configuration (more like SNMP than programming). Juniper's stateless "set" commands work nicely with Expect scripts.

    Of course, you don't edit the configuration on switches these days anyway -- who wants to log into a few hundred switches, even using Expect. So you might want to look at if/how much Juniper charge for their element manager. Not sure is they give it away for free like Cisco Works or charge like a wounded bull like the SDH/DWDM manufacturers.

    An interesting question to ask is why are Juniper so late to this market, and to enterprise networking in general? It's a much larger market than backbone ISPs and even at the launch of the first Juniper router at NANOG potential customers were asking when enterprise use would be supported.

  5. Geoff Mitchell


    Remember that you are not a Cisco shop but a <fill in the name of your company> shop. Your IT Directors are right to consider alternatives and evaluate them from a business perspective. Unless Cisco is doing something special for you, there's really no reason why you shouldn't evaluate other products - and at the same time save your company a boat load of moolah.

    Yes, Cisco does things well, but there are many other extremely good switch products out there frm independents like Extreme, Force10, Foundry, Nortel, Enterasys and the manufacturers like Dell Powerconnect and HP Procurve which conform to the industry standards set out by the ISO (not Cisco!). 95% of those standards are common with Cisco IOS standards, so it's not a stretch.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Sooo expensive

    Well seen as Juniper are pushing Layer3 to the edge of the network, then I'd assume that these switches can actually shift a boatload of PPS with ASIC based Layer3 forwarding, which if they can, actually makes them pretty reasonably priced - Especially as they support IPv6 and run JunOS. Of course, if you're comparing to ProCurve then they aren't going to look cheap - although a 2900-24G (nowhere near in terms of features, or performance) is £1300 + VAT, so they aren't that much more.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    IOS? Standard?

    Maybe it's just the cisco equipment I've been "privileged" to work with, but in my experience IOS is about as internally consistent across products as Microsoft is benevolent. On the other hand, JUNOS has been pretty much identical regardless of the hardware.

    Toss in the fact that Juniper has usually been less expensive for the equivalent performance/features and I'm glad to see them enter this market. That doesn't mean I'll be tossing my existing kit anytime soon, but I'll be paying attention.

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