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Cisco 4500 Series Sup7e Install Notes

One of my projects at work is to replace a couple switches with newer (and larger) 4507R+E with Sup7e. I love projects like this because they're relatively straight forward, but mainly because they are fun! Who doesn't like unboxing a $60,000USD switch and firing it up? It's like a Cisco birthday or something.

Anyway, while configuring this thing, I've noticed a few quirks... idiosyncrasies? "Features"? Whatever you call them, they're new to me and I felt like blogging about it.

SD Memory in a Supervisor

First, just an observation: Cisco now has Secure Digital (SD) memory in a Supervisor. You might be thinking "yeah, I read about that when the Sup7e came out..." However for those who were in the dark, now you know. Here's a picture to share: 

For at least the past decade, I've only seen Compact Flash (CF) cards in switch supervisors and routers. It's bittersweet to see CF memory go, but it's probably for the best as components shrink in size and increase in speed. The one thing that hasn't changed is the ridiculously high price for Cisco brand memory, they kept that feature.

IOS 15

The Second item on my observation list is IOS 15. I've deployed this on several ISRs and I've seen some switches using it, but this will be the first large chassis switch I've deployed with 15. The one thing to point out is some syntax differences on a couple common commands, either due to being deprecated or soon to be deprecated:

Switch(config)# enable secret 5 <password stuff>

is now written without the 5 indicating an MD5 hash:

Switch(config)# enable secret <password stuff>

Another common one that just doesn't show up now:

Switch(config)# ip classless

It just doesn't exist anymore. Perhaps this is because classful IP was all but retired in the 90s. Now we can all just safely assume we're talking CIDR (just in time for IPv6 to make its sweeping entrance).

TenGig Error Messages

One of the first things I noticed after connecting to the console was the following error message:

%SFF8472-5-THRESHOLD_VIOLATION: Te3/1: Rx power low alarm; 
Operating value: -40.0 dBm, Threshold value: -13.9 dBm.

I posted a separate forum post on this one for search-ability reasons, which can be found here. Basically it's just saying a 10G SFP is not receiving anything (-40 dBm) when it's threshold is up at -13.9 dBm. In my case, it's because the switch has nothing plugged into it yet, but in a production switch case, it could be due to a bad patch cable, dirty connector, bad optic, or failing module.

If you've got any lessons learned you'd like to share on the Cisco 4500E platform or Sup7e, feel free to post below. As always, intelligent network related comments are appreciated. Thanks for reading.

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jimjim84's picture

How do you properly cable

How do you properly cable manage one of these things. We recently got one at work and I'm trying to figure out how we're going to manage the cables.

Right now we really only have 2 slots being used.

a 12 port SFP blade and a 48 port UPoE blade that's about 75% full.

Of course, I was out the day it was put in and they didn't put the cable management guides on the sides.

Adam's picture

Cable Management on 4500

So, I can think of a couple options:

1) If you still have the cable managers that came with the Switch, unscrew one or two screws holding up the switch at a time and gradually add the screws back through the cable manager screw holes. This should allow the chassis to stay racked safely while adding the cable managers one screw at a time.

2) If the switch is in a 2 post 19" rack and not a cabinet, install some vertical cable management on either side of the switch. I've been trying to get vertical cable manager deployed everywhere in our closets, but budgets don't always allow for it so we manage with what we have on hand (manufacturer supplied cable management and lots of velcro).

Great Post!

I really enjoyed your post. We currently run 2x 4500 as our core\DMZ switches. I am scheduled to upgrade them both to redundant Sup7e in either Q1 or Q2. Per your post, I will be sure to research the differences in IOS syntax, prior, in order to try and minimize and "gotchas". I look forward to further posts, especially those pertaining to 4500\Sup7e.

Star wars themed entries

I love the Star Wars themed elements in the 4500. Darkside Revision, Jawa Revision, Tatooine Revision, Forerunner Revision...


"but mainly because they are

"but mainly because they are fun! Who doesn't like unboxing a $60,000USD switch and firing it up?"

I have just finished the redesign of our network core and have 2 X 6500's on the way. I have worked on the chassis switch quite a lot on clients networks. But this time it is my network, my design, and they are all mine to play with :)

I know that feeling, two 6509Es

I know that feel, two 6509Es arrived on my first month of work in current company. I was not involved in configuring them, but I do administer them from then on. What a joy :)

%SFF8472-5-THRESHOLD_VIOLATION: Te3/1: Rx power low alarm;

Ive seen this on 65xx and other devices with SFP's and Fibre connections,It could be a number of things from a bad SFP or dirty Fibres, What i do in the first instance is reseat the SFP, clean the fibres and hope for the best

Dr. Radut | blog