Extreme Networks

By Levi_L ·
Has anyone used Extreme Networks? I am looking at their WLAN Controller (WM3400) and it looks like their stuff is pretty robust/reliable, but I have never used it. Any opinions/reviews on the controller itself or the company?

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Sounds, to me

by NexS In reply to Extreme Networks

Like one of those corny TV shows, but instead of those fancy sportsman, a bunch of business guys, tinkering with network switches with bright coloured headbands, rollerblading around the server rooms at incredible speeds.

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Well, some good news, some bad

by robo_dev In reply to Extreme Networks

I was personally involved in a very large Extreme Networks roll out. This is a network with more than 800 physical locations, and more than 10,000 ethernet ports, plus a core network consisting of one big data center and nine other smaller data centers.

It was a tense shootout between Cisco and Extreme, and Extreme won based on what they could do at the core of the terms of raw switching speed, they blew Cisco away. As I recall, we were testing the biggest switch that Extreme was like 30U tall, four power supplies, four mgt modules and something like 1500 gigE ports. We tested a similar switch from Cisco, but it was not even close.

Of course, as you know, switch speeds and feeds are just a game of leapfrog, so vendor A will be faster until vendor B comes up with something better.

Something like 5000 Extreme Summit 24s and 48s were rolled out to the field as well as some of the smaller chassis-based switches. and all was good for about a year. But here comes the not-so-good news. The failure rate for the Summit switches at the edge suddenly went way up, to like one a month. These were not in harsh environments, these were in UPS-protected air conditioned data closets, and yet they were failing.

Extreme very much 'stepped up the plate' and identified/solved the problem, but it took a bit of time, and it caused us many headaches.

Fast forward a year later, and the core of the network now has requirements that were ten times what was planned for. At the core there were also some failures, but nothing spectacular.

Cisco came in, offered some tremendous deal, included IP telephony and WLAN in the mix, and now Cisco is the standard again.

So I guess the bottom line is, Extreme is good stuff...very high performance, but not quite as good as Cisco.

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Mostly good news.

by peter In reply to Well, some good news, som ...

We use extreme network devices for our core, distribution and edge networks (BD8810 and X450, X350, X250, X150s) and the hardware has been mostly rock solid, baring a few failed fans over the last 5 years mostly on older legacy summit 200s.

The good:
The operating system running on the switches is a superb modular operating system, which is 100 times better to use and configure than Cisco operating systems, can be scripted and automated to a massive level. Extreme development seems rapid, with new functions coming all the time which are mostly useful.

The EPICenter monitoring software for extreme networks is superb, and quite tightly integrated with their switches allowing a large ammount of automated deployment, actions to be taken on certain events occuring etc.

In the last year extreme seem to have over-hauled the wireless, and we particular like the option that is coming; of turning any extreme switch into a "wireless control switch" with installing a software module.

The bad:

We don't run Extreme Networks Wireless points(we run Trapeze Networks equipment instead) as 4 years ago Extreme Networks wireless offering wasn't very good.

Initial major software releases can be very buggy (in our experience) for the XOS operating system.

We are based in the UK and can't get support directly from Extreme, only through a partner (for best pricing a gold partner).
Extreme have pulled "gold" partner status on our second support company in 2 years, 4 months after we re-procured (a 3 year agreement) owing to the 1st company losing gold partner status!

I hope that helps a little..

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