NPE-G2 vs. Sup720-3BXL

Paul Stewart pstewart at
Fri May 15 10:33:04 CDT 2009

We've never pushed a NPE-G2 to 800Mb/s before but I would think they
would topple over... hopefully someone on here could confirm my

Moving the BGP to the 12008's would be my choice with PRP-2 processors
if the budget fits.... we're faced with a similar upgrade next year
possibly moving BGP from a pair of 7606's (Sup720-3BXL) over to a pair
of GSR's running PRP2 I think - the BGP processing etc. is pushing the
CPU's too high on the 7600's....

Someone else might suggest the RSP720's but haven't had them in a
production environment yet...  we had PRP2's running on 12012 for a
while and found them rock solid even with older line cards etc...

Hope this helps a bit...;)


-----Original Message-----
From: David Storandt [mailto:dstorandt at] 
Sent: Friday, May 15, 2009 11:08 AM
To: NANOG list
Subject: NPE-G2 vs. Sup720-3BXL

We're stuck in an engineering pickle, so some experience from this
crew would be useful in tie-breaking...

We operate a business-grade FTTx ISP with ~75 customers and 800Mbps of
Internet traffic, currently using 6509/Sup2s for core routing and port
aggregation. The MSFC2s are under stress from 3x full route feeds,
pared down to 85% to fit the TCAM tables. One system has a FlexWAN
with an OC3 card and it's crushing the CPU on the MSFC2. System tuning
(stable IOS and esp. disabling SPD) helped a lot but still doesn't
have the power to pull through. Hardware upgrades are needed...

We need true full routes and more CPU horsepower for crunching BGP
(+12 smaller peers + ISIS). OC3 interfaces are going to be mandatory,
one each at two locations. Oh yeah, we're still a larger startup
without endless pockets. Power, rack space, and SmartNet are not
concerns at any location (on-site cold spares). We may need an
upstream OC12 in the future but that's a ways out and not a concern

Our engineering team has settled on three $20k/node options:
- Sup720-3BXLs with PS and fan upgrades
- Sup2s as switches + ISIS + statics and no BGP, push BGP edge routing
off to NPE-G2s across a 2-3Gbps port-channel
- Sup2s as switches + ISIS + statics and no BGP, push BGP edge routing
off to a 12008 with E3 engines across a 2-3Gbps port-channel.

Ideas and constructive opinions welcome, especially software and

Many thanks,



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