Cisco recalls faulty switch modules

Cisco recalls faulty switch modules

Local users appear to be unaffected by a Cisco switching module product recall.

Cisco has recalled some 10Base-T Ethernet switching modules for its Catalyst 5000 LAN switches because the boards can short out and disable networks.

It is recalling about 11,000 - or 15 per cent - of the 75,000 48-port 10Base-T Ethernet boards currently installed in enterprise networks.

These modules fall within a serial number range that Cisco has identified as potentially defective. Fourteen of these boards have already shorted out, a Cisco spokesman says.

Cisco senior manager of public relations for Asia Pacific, Terry Alberstein, said the company had "identified a manufacturing defect in a small number" of units.

Albertstein said "to our knowledge there are no affected boards" at local customer sites. He said only 17 units were affected globally.

The shorting has been isolated to a copper defect in the module's printed circuit board. The short can cause the module to fail and likely disrupt the operation of the switch in which it is installed, according to a Cisco field notice posted on the company's Web site in early December.

The field notice is located at

The short will cause the switch's power supplies to go into over-current shutdown, thereby cutting off power to the switch, the field notice states. The short creates smoke, but no fire or sparks, the notice states.

The failure may also cause damage to the switch backplane, rendering the switch inoperable, the field notice states. Cisco is urging customers to replace affected boards with 48-port 10Base-T switching modules that do not fall within the serial number range associated with the defective modules. Should a short occur, Cisco is urging customers to replace the entire switch in which the affected module resides.

Cisco is offering replacement hardware and software free of charge, the spokesman says.

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