The Cisco C6500 ASA module has * finally* been released. Let take a look and make some comments.
- The module has arrived two or so years later than expected. It may have missed the window of opportunity when Service Modules were in demand.
- Given that Nexus 7K/5K is the future, C6500 is, for all practical purposes, on a downward slide to history.
- The question is “will people actually buy the ASA service modules ?”
- will people buy enough of them for Cisco to continue to produce them. Cisco has a habit of killing products that don’t make money, or are not popular. Consider the CSM module which has only this month has been EOL because enough people were buying them.
- are you taking a risk buying a product that might die in a years time ? I think the answer is yes, it’s a risky purchase.
- I’m planning on waiting for a year to see how much demand there is or whether Cisco kills it off for lack of sales.
- Cisco will support the C6500 but don’t expect much product development in the next ten years, if any.
- As such, the C6500 it will be a nice profitable business for Cisco “selling ice to the eskimos”.
So who might buy the C6500 ASA-SM ?
- people who have already got Services modules – especially FWSM that need more performance.
- FWSM handles IPv6 badly. ASA-SM seems to do better, so it might be the IPv6 upgrade for existing networks.
- 20 Gbps maximum firewall throughput (max)
- 16 Gbps of maximum firewall throughput (multi-protocol)
- 300,000 connections per second
- 10 million concurrent connections
- 250 security contexts
- 1,000 VLANs
The performance list looks pretty good.
This has me wondering what the price point is going to be.
I’m also wondering how what the maximum performance per flow will be. For the FWSM, it can handle only 1Gbps flows due to the way that the backplane transfers data to the module. If the ASA SM handles up to 20Gbps, how does that connectivity work ?
Anything I’ve missed ?