HP fleshes out ProCurve edge switch line

Hewlett-Packard’s ProCurve Networking division is upgrading its 2600 family of enterprise Ethernet edge switches with more models, some of which are priced substantially less than equivalent existing units in the line.

The new 2610 family of five switches include a hybrid 24 port model with 12 non-powered ports for environments that don’t require Power-over-Ethernet on every port.

“With converged trends today like unified communications, IP video for security cameras and wireless access points these forms will be very easy to deploy,” said Corey Copping, ProCurve product marketing manager for HP Canada.

For example, the hybrid switch would fit well in a manufacturing company needing to plug in several security cameras a WLAN and several desktop PCs, he said.

Unlike the existing 2600 models, all members of the 2610 line come with sFlow, HP’s version of traffic management and monitoring.

HP says sFlow on the network can detect viruses, track their spread, identify who is scanning the network, verify quality of service and diagnose problems.

Having that technology on a workgroup switch is a nice feature, said Mark Tauschek, a senior analyst who specializes in networking equipment at Info-Tech Research of London, Ont. “It gives you end-to-end visibility (on the network) right out to the ports,” he said. He also thought the hybrid switch is a “nice option you don’t usually see. Usually you have to pay for all 24 ports with Power.” Having 12 non-PoE ports could amount to a $600 saving, he added.

Otherwise, he added, there’s nothing earth-shattering in the new models, which he described as a good way to fill out the ProCurve line.

Their biggest competitor is Cisco Systems’ Express 500 and 2960-series switches, in his opinion.

The 2610 family will eventually replace the 2600 line. However, for now 2600s will still be sold to satisfy organizations who have heavily invested in those models.

Copping said the competitive pricing of the new line combined with ProCurve’s lifetime warranty makes the models very attractive. The non-PoE switches are priced the same as their 2600-series counterparts, but the PoE versions are “dramatically reduced,” Copping said.

For example, the $3,079 ProCurve 2610-48-PWR is $1,950 less than the 2600-series 48-port powered switch.

HP was able to cut the cost in part because the 2610 isn’t as deep as the older model, he said. The new models are;

–the $709 ProCurve 2610-24 fanless and $1,229 model 2610-48 managed 28/52 port switches with 24/48 auto-sensing 10/100 ports plus two 10/100/1000BASE-T and two miniGBIC ports. An optional redundant power supply is available;

–the $1,799 ProCurve 2610-24-PWR and $3,079 2610-48-PWR, whose 10/100 ports can support PoE. They also have two 10/100/1000BASE-T and two mini GBIC ports. Optional redundant and external power supplies are available;

–the ProCurve 2610-24/12PWR with 24 10/100 ports, 12 of which are PoE-capable. Selling at $1,099 it also has optional redundant and external power supplies.

HP also has added a new switch with more ports to its entry-level 2510 line for those who don’t need a unit with PoE capabilities. The 2510-48, which sells for $859, offers 48 ports, as well as a four Gigabit live uplinks.

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