Contemporary Control’s managed Ethernet switch performs in punishing environments

Downers Grove, IL—Contemporary Controls recently launched a managed version of the EISX switches in its CTRLink family, which serve in high reliability situations and extreme temperatures.

02/05/2004



Downers Grove, IL
Contemporary Controls recently launched a managed version of the EISX switches in its CTRLink family, which serve in high reliability situations and extreme temperatures. The firm’s new Ethernet EISX(M) Series offers eight 10/100Base-T twisted-pair ports and supports the SNMP protocol.

Besides having features found in standard plug-and-play (PnP) switches, such as auto-negotiation, half/full-duplex operation and flow control, EISX(M) adds virtual local area network (VLAN), trunking, quality of service (QoS), and a programmable fault relay that can be connected to a supervisory system.

Contemporary adds that EISX(M)’s individual port parameters ensure simple configuration via a console port attached to a terminal emulation program. EISX(M) also supports advanced management features to maximize performance in rapidly growing networks and demanding environments, with the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). It’s other features include port mirroring and the static forwarding table.

EISX(M)’s SNMP functionality provides information on the status of the various ports on the switches. The SNMP consists of a collection of managed objects that can be queried by the operator to indicate the status of the network or any particular device. Because this data is presented in an easily understood format, operators and maintenance personnel in a central location can monitor the entire network and pinpoint potential problems before they happen.

Normally, switches restrict communication to only those ports directly involved with a specific transmission, reducing traffic. By using EISX(M)’s port-mirroring feature, port traffic from one or more ports can be duplicated on another port for monitoring purposes. Even a single Ethernet MAC address can be mirrored. The switches maintain a table of station addresses and port assignments.

A static forwarding table can hold many entries for manual mapping of Ethernet MAC addresses to specific switch ports. EISX(M) supports Auto-MDI/X on all ports, avoiding the need for the inconvenient cross-over cables when attaching a port to another switch or hub. In addition to one power LED, each port has an LED showing link/activity/data rate by color: green for 100 Mbps and yellow for 10 Mbps. Flashing LEDs indicate port activity.

—Jim Montague, News Editor, Control Engineering, jmontague@reedbusiness.com





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