Tag Archives: Cisco SFP

How to Select 10G SFP+ Modules for Cisco Switches?

10G fiber optic network is being widespread in today’s telecommunication network. A lot of 10G fiber optic devices like switches are being uses, among which Cisco devices are the most commonly used according to statistics. If you choose a Cisco switch, Cisco original brand or Cisco compatible modules like SFP/SFP+ might be needed for transferring between optical signals and electrical signals. This post will offer details about how to select the proper 10G SFP+ module for Cisco switches.cisco compatible modules

Understand 10G IEEE Standards and How Cisco Name Its Modules

10G fiber optic network is mature now, and there is a wide selection of 10G IEEE standards for different 10G networking applications and environments. Before you buy 10G SFP+ modules for your Cisco switches, you should firstly get to know these 10G standards.

10G IEEE Standards

IEEE has defined 10G standards for different transmission distance and transmission media. For instance, there are 10GBASE-SR SFP+ for short distance up to 300 meters over OM3 multimode optical fiber and 10GBASE-LR for long distance up to 10 kilometers over single-mode fiber. There are also standards for 10G transmission over copper cables like 10GBASE-CR and 10GBASE-T. The following table listed the details for the most commonly used 10G standards.

10G IEEE Standards Description
10GBASE-SR Support 10G transmission over wavelength of 850nm via multimode fiber
in short distances: OM3 (up to 300m) and OM4 (up to 400m).
10GBASE-LR Support 10G transmission over single-mode fiber up to 10km
over wavelength of 1310nm.
10GBASE-LRM Support 10G transmission over standard multimode fiber up to 200m
over wavelength of 1310nm.
10GBASE-ER Operate over 1550nm wavelength and support transmission distance up
to 40km over single-mode fiber. Attenuation is required for transmission
distance shorter than 20km.
10GBASE-ZR Support 10G transmission over 1550nm single-mode fiber optic up to 80km.
For short links, attenuation is required to ensure transmission quality.
10GBASE-BX Support duplex 10G transmission over a single single-mode fiber using
two different wavelengths up to 80km.
10G CWDM/DWDM Support 10G transmission over 1550nm single-mode fiber optic up to 80km.
For short links, attenuation is required to ensure transmission quality.
10GBASE-CR Support 10G transmission over Twinax copper cable in very short distance
and offer a cost-effective way for connections within racks.

Product Name of Cisco 10G SFP+ Modules

The naming system of Cisco 10G SFP+ modules is closely related to the IEEE standards. Here I listed several examples for Cisco SFP+ module to better illustrate how Cisco names its 10G SFP+ modules.

10G IEEE Standards Cisco 10G Modules Product Number Example
10GBASE-BX Cisco SFP-10G-BXD-I & SFP-10G-BXU-I; Cisco SFP-10G-BX40D-I & SFP-10G-BX40U-I
10G CWDM/DWDM Cisco CWDM-SFP10G-1470; Cisco DWDM-SFP10G-61.41

For common 10G SFP+ modules, Cisco uses the key words of the standards to name the responding modules. For special modules, Cisco has built another naming system.

SFP+ module

For a pair of BiDi SFP+ modules, letter “D” and “U” is used to the two modules that are used together on each end of the fiber optic link. For instance, SFP-10G-BXD-I & SFP-10G-BXU-I is a pair of BiDi Modules that can support transmission distance up to 10km. Additional numbers are added to mark the transmission distance of the BiDi modules. SFP-10G-BX40D-I & SFP-10G-BX40U-I is a pair of BiDi SFP+ modules that can support transmission distance up to 40km.

For CWDM 10G SFP+ and DWDM SFP+, the wavelength is added in the part number. For instance, CWDM-SFP10G-1470 is the part number of a CWDM SFP+ that is operated at wavelength of 1470nm. If you want a CWDM SFP+ operating over 1550nm, then the product number of this CWDM module should be CWDM-SFP10G-1550. As all the DWDM SFP+ modules are operated over wavelengths around 1500nm, in the product number of Cisco DWDM SFP+ modules, the first two number 1 and 5 is eliminated. For example, DWDM-SFP10G-61.41 stands for a DWDM SFP+ transceiver with operating wavelength of 1561.41nm.


For modules like SFP+ direct attach cable (SFP+ DAC) and SFP+ active optical cable (SFP+ AOC) which contains a length of cables, Cisco combines the characters of IEEE standard and number to name its modules. Cisco SFP-H10GB-CU1M stands for 10G SFP+ direct attach copper cable that is one-meter long. Cisco SFP-10G-AOC2M is a 2-meter long 10G SFP+ active optical cable.

Do You Really Need Cisco Original Brand SFP+ Module?

Except IEEE standard and transmission distance, to select the proper 10G SFP+ module should also considerate several other factors like compatibility and costs.

Although Cisco has a wide selection of switches and 10G SFP+ modules, but not every SFP+ modules can work well on every Cisco switches SFP+ port. Before selecting the SFP+ msodule for your Cisco switch, you must make sure this SFP+ is compatible with your switch.

The second important factor is the costs for the SFP+ modules. Why? SFP+ module is just a small part of the whole fiber optic network, but the use amount of SFP+ module is very large. Cisco Original brand SFP+ modules are usually expensive. Thus, select cost-effective modules are necessary. Actually, Cisco Original brand SFP+ module is not the only choice. There are also many third party modules that it compatible with Cisco switches. Generally, prices of third party fiber optic transceivers are much lower than the original brand ones.

How to Buy Cisco 10G SFP+ Module?

If you have plenty of money, you can directly order the modules from Cisco. However, if you are going to select the third party modules for a cost-effective solution, then the quality and compatibility would be very important. FS.COM is a provider offers a full range of Cisco compatible modules. All its modules are fully tested in original brand switches to ensure the compatibility and quality. What’s more, FS.COM uses the same naming system as Cisco for its Cisco compatible modules and generic fiber optic modules. A list is also offered in the product page of each fiber optic modules showing the compatible switches and platforms. Customer can use the Cisco product number to search Cisco Compatible and generic modules in FS.COM directly.

Related Article:

Cisco SFP-10G-SR: All You Need to Know

A Comprehensively Understanding of Cisco 10GBASE SFP+ Modules

Cable and Optics Solution for Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F Switches

Catalyst-4849E-F switch

Cisco Catalyst 4900 series switches were once the most widely deployed ToR (top-of-rack) switches in this industry. This post will introduce the detailed cabling information for two upgrade version of this series switches, which are Cisco Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F. Compared with Catalyst 4900 series switches, the two switches double the uplink bandwidth and provide nonblocking server-to-server traffic with 176G aggregate throughput. Meanwhile, they provide true front to back and back to front airflow with no side or top venting, which can largely reduce the cooling burden of the data centers.

Port Information of Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F

Cisco Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F are very alike. The main difference of the two switches is that the air flow in the Catalyst 4948E goes from the front to the rear of the switch while in Catalyst 4948E-F switch the air flow goes from the rear to the front. The front panel of the two switches is generally the same. Both of the two switches are one-rack-unit (1RU) fixed configuration switch with 48 RJ45 ports of 10/100/1000M for downlink and 4 SFP/SFP+ ports of 1/10G for uplink on the front panel. The following picture shows the detailed port information of Cisco Catalyst 4948E and 4948E-F switch.Catalyst 4948E-F ports information

Downlink Connection for Cisco Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F

The 48 ports on the front panel of Catalyst 4948/4948E-F can support downlink of 10/100/1000M. The great advantage of these ports is that they can configure themselves to operate at the speed of the attached devices. If the attached devices do not support auto-negotiation, the speed and duplex parameters can be set explicitly. A network cable with a RJ-45 plug at both end can connect Cisco Catalyst 4948E/4948E-F switch to the downlink target devices.

Uplink Connection for Cisco Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F

The four uplink SFP/SFP+ ports on Cisco Catalyst 4948E and Catalyst 4948E-F can support both copper and fiber optic transmission of 1G/10G by using different modules and cables. In addition, these ports can also support CWDM SFP transceivers and DWDM SFP transceivers. The following part will introduce the details about how to connect Cisco Catalyst 4948E/4948E-F to 1G network and 10G network.

For 1G connection based on cooper, the 1000BASE-T can be used with RJ45 connector and Cat5 cable. For 1G connection based on fiber optic, there are a wide range of SFP transceivers can be used. Different SFP transceivers should be used with appropriate cables to ensure its best performance. For example, CWDM and DWDM SFP transceivers is usually used with LC connector and single-mode fiber optic cable, thus they can support long distance transmission. The following table presents the solutions for Cisco Catalyst 4948E/4948E-F 1G uplink connection.

Modules Connector & Cable Distance
GLC-T (1000BASE-T) RJ45,Cat5 100m
GLC-SX-MM LC duplex, MMF 550m
GLC-LH-SM LC duplex, SMF 10km
GLC-ZX-SM 70km
CWDM SFP 40-120km
DWDM SFP 40-120km
GLC-BX-D LC simplex, SMF 10km
GLC-BX-U 10km
GLC-BX40-D-I 40km
GLC-BX40-U-I 40km
GLC-BX40-DA-I 40km
GLC-BX80-U-I 80km
GLC-BX80-D-I 80km

For 10G connection, both transceiver and DAC (direct attach cable) can be used, according to the transmission distance requirements. Generally, 10G SFP+ to SFP+ DAC can support transmission distance around 10 meters. If transmission distances are up to hundreds meters or kilometers, fiber optic transceivers should be used. The following table is the detailed solution for Cisco Catalyst 4948E/4948E-F 10G uplink connection.

Modules Connector & Cable Distance
SFP-10G-LRM LC duplex, MMF 220m
SFP-10G-SR 300m
SFP-10G-SR-S 300m
SFP-10G-LR LC duplex, SMF 10km
SFP-10G-LR-S 10km
SFP-10G-ER 40km
SFP-10G-ER-S 40km
SFP-10G-ZR 80km
SFP-10G-ZR-S 80km
DWDM SFP+ 40-80km
SFP-10G-BXD-I LC simplex, SMF 10km
SFP-10G-BXU-I 10km
SFP-10G-BX40D-I 40km
SFP-10G-BX40U-I 40km
SFP-H10GB-CU1M 10G SFP+ DAC Twinax Cable 1m

Please contact sales@fs.com or visit FS.COM for more details about the compatible transceivers and DACs for Cisco Catalyst 4948E and Cisco Catalyst 4948E-F switches.

Source: http://www.fs.com/blog/catalyst-4948e-catalyst-4948e-f-cabling-solutions.html

SFP Transceiver Module Troubleshooting

SFP (small form-factor pluggable) is a compact, hot-pluggable transceiver module used for both telecommunication and data communications applications. With the increasing high speed data transmission demands of people, products, such as SFP+, CFP and QSFP/QSFP+ etc. have taken a share of the market. Nonetheless, SFPs have still played an important role in telecommunication and data communication. As a widely used component in data transmission, it is hard to avoid faults in using SFP, and sometimes even result in a bad situation and heavy loss. This paper will help you to diagnose the SFP problems (take Cisco for example) and SFP transceiver module troubleshooting. I hope it would be acted as a learning tool and a reference for both new and experienced technicians who work in this field.


To diagnose SFP problems, you can get statistics from the browser interface, the CLI (Command Line Interface) or an SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) workstation. The most common SFP problems include these aspects:

  • Poor performance
  • No connectivity
  • Corrupted software

Poor Performance (or Excessive Errors)
Possible Cause:
The possible causes of this problem include that cabling distance is exceeded or port statistics show excessive frame check sequence (FCS), late-collision, or alignment errors.

  • Reduce the cable length to within the recommended distances.
  • See your SFP module documentation for cabling guidelines.

No connectivity
Possible Cause:
This problem is most likely related to cabling. Using incorrect or bad cable, or incorrect cable wiring, or STP (Shielded Twisted Pair) checking for possible loops may probably lead to this problem.

  • Verify the pinouts are correct for the proper application of cables.
  • Replace the cable with a tested good cable.
  • Wait 30 seconds for the port LED to turn green.

Corrupted software
The corrupted software here we mentioned include the following three situations.
1.The port is placed in error-disabled state after SFP is inserted.
Possible Cause:
This problem is usually caused by bad or non-Cisco-approved SFP module(ie. the incompatible SFP).
Remove the SFP module from the switch and replace it with a Cisco-approved module. Use the irrdisable recovery cause GBIC-invalid global configuration command to verify the port status, and enter a time interval to recover from the error-disable state. The best advice is to use the Cisco original SFP or 100% Cisco compatible SFP (If you decide to use a third-party SFP, please ensure that your supplier is assured) that is adapted to the switch.

2.Device does not recognize the SFP module.
Possible Cause:
This problem is generally related to the SFP installation. Situations, such as SFP is installed upside down or does not snap into the slot can cause this problem.

  • Verify that the SFP module is not installed upside down.
  • Remove the SFP module. Inspect for physical damage to the connector, the module, and the module slot.
  • Replace the SFP module with a known good SFP module.

3.Excessive errors found in port statistics.
Possible Cause:
Bad adapter in attached device or STP checking for possible loops can cause this problem.
Run adapter card diagnostic utility and wait 30 seconds for the port LED to turn green.

Some common error message of Cisco Switch When Using With SFP Module
Error Message: Transceiver module inserted in port
Explanation: The online insertion and removal (OIR) facility detected a newly inserted transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message.

Error Message: INIT_FAILURE: Detected for transceiver module in port, module disabled
Explanation: An initialization failure occurred for the transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message. This condition could be caused by software, firmware, or hardware problem. As a result of the error, the module is disabled.

Recommended Action: Try reseting the module. Hardware replacement should not occur first occurrence. Before requesting hardware replacement, review troubleshooting logs with a technical support representative.

Error Message: NOT_IDENTIFIED: Detected for transceiver module in %s, module disabled
Explanation: The transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message could not be identified and may not be compatible with the interface. The transceiver module specified in the error message contains a transceiver code which could not be correctly interpreted. As a result of the error, the module is disabled.

Recommended Action: Replace the module with a compatible transceiver.

Error Message: UNSUPPORTED-TRANCEIVER: Unsupported SFP transceiver found on board. Warranty/support may void
Explanation: The transceiver module for the interface specified in the error message is not a Cisco supported module. As a result of the error, the module is disabled. When Cisco determines that a fault or defect can be traced to the use of third-party transceivers installed by a customer or reseller, then, at Cisco’s discretion, Cisco may withhold support under warranty or a Cisco support program. In the course of providing support for a Cisco networking product Cisco might require that the end user install Cisco transceivers if Cisco determines that removing third-party parts will assist Cisco in diagnosing the cause of a support issue.
Recommended Action: None.

Related Article: How to Install SFP transceiver?

                             Understanding Video SFP Transceivers

Cost Effective Compatible Cisco Transceivers

Cisco BiDi SFP+

The transceivers are widely applied to wireless communication devices nowadays. If you are all set to establish a Gigabit Ethernet connection or fiber channel within your own network, then Cisco transceivers is the best option that you can count on. There are various advantages that a user can experience from Cisco transceivers, it is effective to have a Cisco SFP transceiver at work, catering to the demands and requirements of various individuals and enterprises. Many popular manufacturers produce transceivers, but why Cisco transceivers are the most outstanding in modern market?

Advantages of Cisco Transceivers:

If you are wondering about the benefits and the advantages of Cisco transceivers over others, then read the following listed down for you.

Scalability is the major advantage. Scalability, refers to the potential or inherent capacity to rise beyond eight channels on one stand. This makes it easier to organize and manage a network.

Cisco transceivers help in making the configuration simple and easy. Configuration can lead to the resources being depleted when an excess amount of time is taken in carrying out the process. The resources here can be in the form of a professional at work or any other monetary expense as well. Therefore, with Cisco transceivers your resources can be saved as well as their cost, which is beneficial in the end.

Cisco transceivers are considered the most reliable and capable forms of pluggable modules available, and are ideal for large organizations and offices. The world we live in today is packed full of different technology, and everyone wants to ensure that they remain connected and in control. Therefore, having a system in place is efficient and essential. Cisco not only supplies the parts and system that you require, but also excellent technical support. Having a support team will ensure your office is back up and running quickly.

There is a vast selection of different Cisco transceivers for different applications to choose. Cisco transceivers like Cisco 100 Gigabit Modules, Cisco 40 Gigabit Modules, Cisco 10 Gigabit Modules, Cisco CWDM Transceiver Modules, Cisco DWDM Transceiver Modules, Cisco Fast Ethernet SFP Modules, Cisco GBIC Modules and Cisco SONET/SDH SFP Modules all provide the same excellent service. Before installing the transceiver, you should seek advice on the one that will suit the size of your office.

You can also rent the transceivers from Cisco which will allow you to have a full technical support package. Using Cisco for your Ethernet solutions is an excellent choice, and the Cisco transceivers can be used in conjunction with other pieces of equipment.

Cisco transceivers are so excellent, but original Cisco transceivers are expensive. Then it is an effective way to buy compatible Cisco transceivers from other famous manufacturers, for example FiberStore, a professional manufacturer who has 8 experiences, provides almost all the Cisco transceivers, all are compatible with Cisco products.

FiberStore offers cost-effective standards-based compatible Cisco Transceivers. Just compatible Cisco SFP transceivers include: multimode optical modules GLC-SX-MM; Single-mode optical module GLC-LH-SM, GLC-ZX-SM; SFP copper module GLC-T; DWDM/CWDM SFP; 2.125G SFP transceiver module; 4G SFP module; BIDI SFP optical transceiver; SFP with DDM transceiver such as SFP-GE-S and so on.