Cisco 3550 Gigastack - better than just using the gigabit ehternet ports? Why?

Why is the gigastack kit sold by cisco better than just using one of the 2 gigabit ethernet ports on the 3550?

Is there a better way of stacking 3550's?

Help!
Wibble_Asked:
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Scotty_ciscoConnect With a Mentor Commented:
This is a 3550 though not a 3750 so the later is true you can still manage them with one IP if you cluster the switches but that can be done off of any port.  I am not a big fan of the GIGA stack especially if you already have gig ports on the switch.

Thanks
scott
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ravenplCommented:
Usually stacking cables/ports/kits delivers much better performance than using simple gbit ports. The stack wire can handle more than that...
You may think it stacks two switch's MOBOs instead two ports...
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mikebernhardtCommented:
It also combines management of the switches- one is the master and you can get to all of them from a single IP- the ports appear as one big switch.
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Scotty_ciscoCommented:
It really is not better because if you use both ports on a GIGastack you go to half duplex by default.... I would use the ports if you have them free if not ... that is the perk they do not burn up ports.

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Pentrix2Commented:
By using the stacking cables you are utilizing the back panel which will give you 32gigabites of throughput.  this is the main advantage.  The second advantage is managing these devices by one IP address.

David
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Scotty_ciscoCommented:
Guy's

I may be wrong but you can manage multipule switches by adding them to a cluster anyway so the one IP address is a mute point you can cluster off of any port.

Thanks
Scott
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Pentrix2Commented:
Ohh I didn't know.  I haven't tried it yet but will in a couple of days.  I got over a dozen of 3750s gigastackables so will definitely try it.

David
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fullermsCommented:
The diffference between stacking 3750s and other switches is the backplane. When you stack 3750's you are connecting the backplanes together. So you get the benefit of a single management IP address AND a 32 GBps interconnect between switches in the same stack. Since the backpanes are directly connected, the rest of the network will see a stack of 3750's as a single switch. Its like building a chassis - switch by switch.

When you stack the the other switches like the 3550s, you get a single mangement IP address. But the interconnect between the switches is limited to 2 Gbps full-duplex (or is it 1 Gbps? I really dont recall). And they are essentially seen as different switches by the rest of the network.
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