My name is George Smith and I am a senior systems engineer with Extreme Networks. In the course of doing my job I have had the opportunity to talk with some amazingly talented individuals from both our partners and our customer base. One recurring theme we hear a lot is that it’s a lot easier to work on Extreme Networks Ethernet switches then it is to work on Cisco IOS switches.
I was talking to one such engineer, Jason Place, Senior Network Engineer with Envision Technology Advisors, LLC., an Extreme Networks partner and solution provider in Rhode Island (US East Coast). In the interview, Jason states “I would easily rather use an Extreme switch than a Cisco at any time. It’s much much easier to set up. I love the access [control] lists especially. What I can do in ten lines on Extreme is a hundred times more than what I could do in ten lines on Cisco.”
Of course not everything is immediately obvious, with some concepts in ExtremeXOS being expressed differently than they are in IOS. One example is the way VLANs are handled, with XOS applying ports to a VLAN instead of VLANs to a port. But different doesn’t necessarily mean harder, Jason explains “once you see it, it’s elegant.”
Jason Place does recommend “getting your hands dirty,” in other words, get some time on some switches in a lab and experiment. One thing we should probably mention here is that while Jason recommended getting hold of the Concepts Guide and some switches, another approach, particularly for those on a budget or with limited physical space, is to use the XOS VM to build a virtual lab, which you can read more about here.
The bottom line is that we talked to a clueful Network Engineer with years of experience and formal training on other platforms including IOS and he had some very nice things to say about Extreme Networks and the ease of use we bake in to XOS and our switches. Your mileage may vary, but with the low cost (as in free) of building a virtual switch lab, we certainly hope you can check out the power and simplicity of XOS for yourself. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the video.