Data Center Cabling Solutions
How to Cable the Arista 7500E, 7500R and 7300X Series Switches

How to Cable the Arista 7500E, 7500R and 7300X Series Switches

  • May 12, 2016

By: Dave Fredricks | Data Center Infrastructure Architect


CABLExpress recently published a structured cabling application guide for Arista switches. The guide includes connectivity examples for the 7500E and 7300X Series switches, and includes the newer 7320X chassis. It also includes the recently released 7500R router.

The line cards for these four different chassis types have options for optics that run 1G, 10G, 25G, 40G, 50G and 100G. Understanding the correct cabling models to connect these switches to top-of-rack (ToR) switches or for port replication can be challenging.

In-depth connectivity guide diagrams

This connectivity guide provides detailed cabling diagrams and includes in-depth information. It shows the different connector options (LC or MPO/MTP®) with either multi-mode or single-mode fiber optic glass. Understanding these connector options is most helpful when connecting switch to switch.

The guide also delves into transceiver considerations. Understanding which transceiver will work best for a specific install will help you obtain the lowest cost optic for the application. There have been instances where people have acquired single-mode optics thinking the distance was too long for multi-mode. This is unfortunate because in reality the less expensive multi-mode transceiver would have gotten the job done.

The advantages of port replication™

The connectivity guide also demonstrates port replication™ of a core switch either to a Main Distribution Area (MDA) or Zone Distribution Area (ZDA) application. The 12-port MXP on the 100G line card in the flagship 7500E switch has the ability to run (120) 10G ports, (36) 40G ports or (12) 100G ports. Port replication design will serve the 10G and 40G as a viable solution against point-to-point connectivity. In addition to these gigabit speeds, the connection has a link loss budget to maintain in order to properly run the desired speeds. The published standards from IEEE 802.3bm provide the information needed to understand acceptable numbers in terms of dB loss.

The ideal cabling solution for your needs

Recognizing the best optic for the application and most efficient structured cabling solution will help you utilize your cabling infrastructure for multiple generations of core switch upgrades. This guide provides the guidelines you need to implement successful cabling of your Arista 7500E, 7500R and 7300X Series modular switches.

Download the connectivity guide here.

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