Cisco Catalyst Switches vs Dell PowerConnect Switches comparison

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10,596 views|5,320 comparisons
94% willing to recommend
Dell Technologies Logo
3,128 views|2,396 comparisons
89% willing to recommend
Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Sep 4, 2022

We performed a comparison between Cisco Catalyst Switches and Dell PowerConnect Switches based on our users’ reviews in four categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Cisco Catalysts Switches users say the setup can be very complex for the novice user; Cisco network experience or certification is advised. Dell PowerConnect users feel deployment is easy and straightforward.
  • Features: Cisco Catalyst Switches users like the spanning tree and redundancy features. The solution offers great PoE capabilities, load balancing, and DHCP functionalities. Some users feel that security and wireless functions could be improved, in addition to better compatibility with today’s software-defined technologies.

    Users say Dell PowerConnect Switches are very compatible and provide great throughput. They are very stable, easy to configure, and can easily multi-task. Many users tell us some newer versions are not compatible with older versions, which can cause latencies, network blockages, or even outages.
  • Pricing: Many users feel Cisco Catalyst Switches are a very expensive solution. Dell PowerConnect Switches users feel they are very moderately priced and very cost-effective.
  • Service and Support: Users of both solutions are happy with the level of service and support they have received.

Comparison Results: Users feel Cisco Catalyst Switches provide great stability, intuitive reliable analytics, seamless scalability, excellent PoE capabilities, and solid robust security. However, users are happier with the pricing of Dell PowerConnect Switches.

To learn more, read our detailed Cisco Catalyst Switches vs. Dell PowerConnect Switches Report (Updated: May 2024).
772,422 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"These switches are stable.""The network is secure.""The stability and performance are extremely good.""The hardware and the security are the product's valuable features""This is a feature-rich product and the newer models have improved features that allow for many new possibilities.""It is a pretty good product. I don't see a problem with this product. Cisco Catalyst Switches fit the best for the type of systems that we deploy. Our customers usually are happy with Cisco equipment. Many partners and third parties have ordered this solution.""We use a lot of security features available with Cisco Catalyst Switches.""It helps keep our network connections in a healthy state."

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"Its throughout and compatibility are the most valuable.""The most valuable features of the solution stem from the fact that it is a stable and reliable product covered with good warranties and prices that ensure deep discounts for partners.""The product is reliable.""This solution comes with a lifetime warranty.""Dell offers very good support.""It's easy to set up. We can put it in production in a couple of minutes.""The most valuable feature is stability.""This is a very reliable solution."

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Cons
"Their price should be improved. They are a little bit expensive.""Dell switching is coming up with a solution where you can put your own OS inside their switching infra. That is where they are talking about open networking. We can show that our Cisco is also an open-source. We are open to different switching operating systems if the customer is willing to put it in. We can support multiple operating systems inside the switching infrastructure. It removes the hardware and software dependency on each other. That is where I think there can be room for improvement. Then we can talk about open networking and that is where Cisco can also come up with open networking access.""They should also have a graphic interface for the switches too without the command line.""The solution was stable 10 years ago, there is room for improvement in this area.""There are multiple operating systems across Cisco's portfolio, which is problematic.""There's a ban on my country and therefore I can't get Cisco support if I need it. It's not allowed.""All other modules have comparatively many more functions or power than regular Catalyst switches.""Its price should be improved. It is very pricey."

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"The IOS software that is used on the switches could be improved.""I expect it to be a zero-touch or a plug-and-play device. To some extent, it is, but we need to know the architecture, and we need to know what exactly we are doing. It is not so easy to implement. It depends on what exactly we are doing and it is still not a plug-and-play or zero-touch device. In the upcoming version, they can make it zero-touch, where we can just power it on and start using it. They can have some templates for different scenarios, such as when you are using it for the data center or adding it to your existing infrastructure.""The solution's ROI for generic networking is not extraordinary.""It would be great to have modules that integrate with SDN solutions such as Cisco ACI, Arista SDN, Huawei Agile, and IBM.""When it comes to the configuration, there should be documentation and interactive help available to assist people who have experience with products from other vendors.""A user can take care of the product's installation part, but it may not seem to be an easy process.""A big issue with this product is that when our customer migrated the data center, one cluster blocked the whole network and because we had a new approach, some commands were not compatible with the new version.""There should be more port options in this switch. Currently, it has 24 or 48 ports. However, some of our customers require only 8 ports, but I have to put a switch with 24 ports. They should provide smaller solutions and complimentary access point for companies like ours with a low quantity of work. The main issue with this product is branding. They should improve their branding and promote their brand more in Mexico. Customers are more aware of brands like Cisco as compared to Dell."

More Dell PowerConnect Switches Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "​The price should go down instead of up. ​"
  • "It has a very high cost, but understandably, due to its very good quality."
  • "Cisco's prices are not cheap, but the stability is worth it."
  • "Pricing could be better."
  • "If you consider Cisco's price with the Dell, you will definitely lose with Cisco. But Cisco has a major area of equipment in general. Cisco has routers, firewalls, NAC, certain video conferencing, Apple phones, and different security solutions. But Dell doesn't have such areas, Dell only has switching architecture."
  • "Generally, Cisco Catalyst would be relatively expensive compared to the competition, it would be on the expensive side."
  • "Pricing is an issue I have been facing, in comparison with HPE or Juniper. The Nexus series is out of the question right now. Scalability is more an issue on the pricing side and less on the technology side."
  • "Catalyst is very expensive."
  • More Cisco Catalyst Switches Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "This solution is much cheaper than comparable products by Cisco."
  • "The price of these switches is okay."
  • "Its price is okay. Sometimes, it is lower than a Cisco solution."
  • "Cheaper than its competitors"
  • "Inexpensive"
  • "If you want to purchase a new Dell PowerConnect Switch, you will pay up to $1,600, but I bought them used. I bought the four Dell PowerConnect Switches that I used for $1,000."
  • "Dell PowerConnect switches are cheaper than Cisco switches. Cisco's higher capacity switches (100 or 200 gigs) are super-expensive. With the higher capacity, the price of the switches and the price of the architecture go high. Dell is cheaper and modular. So, I don't need to invest 100% upfront. I can invest as I progress. That is an option because the chassis will not be populated with all the pluggables. I have a choice because it is modular. I can go for 25 gigs today, and after four months, I can go for 100 gigs, and after that, I can go for 200 gigs. I have a choice when it is not a fixed switch."
  • "Pricing for Dell PowerConnect Switches is quite competitive compared to Cisco and HP pricing. Dell has cheaper pricing and the company is trying to push for sales for its switching infrastructure because right now, the current market is dominated by Cisco. In the US market, there's Cisco, HP, Juniper, and Arista which you can buy for data center switching meant for different kinds of enterprises and ISPs. Dell PowerConnect Switches, on the other hand, is a product for people who need smaller setups or individual switches, especially those looking for a cheaper product and basic switching, though you can also buy a complete suite packaged with the switches."
  • More Dell PowerConnect Switches Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:Hello Mesfin It depends on the real scenario, the cisco 2960 is a very good device and they usually have routing functions but there are many different models within the same 2960 line, and on the… more »
    Top Answer:We are a vendor for the healthcare sector, especially hospitals, and normally, we use a full Cisco solution for stability, especially for the stability of the Access Points and the security of… more »
    Top Answer:I would rate the pricing a ten out of ten, with ten being expensive.
    Top Answer:Dell PowerConnect Switches have a VTL feature similar to Cisco's VSS. With VTL, using this technology, you can cluster two switches together to increase redundancy in the environment.
    Top Answer:The solution could provide more integration to focus on targeting the network as a whole rather than a unified environment. It is meant for a built environment, so integration with other third-party… more »
    Ranking
    1st
    out of 16 in LAN Switching
    Views
    10,596
    Comparisons
    5,320
    Reviews
    26
    Average Words per Review
    473
    Rating
    8.4
    3rd
    out of 16 in LAN Switching
    Views
    3,128
    Comparisons
    2,396
    Reviews
    10
    Average Words per Review
    372
    Rating
    8.2
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Cisco Catalyst, Catalyst
    PowerConnect Switches
    Learn More
    Overview

    Cisco Catalyst Switches are a reliable and scalable network switching and routing solution, focusing on VLANs and VLAN switching. They are used as access switches, distribution switches, and core switches in various environments, deployed on-premises, and used for long connections. The switches are easy to configure, install, and upgrade and offer good pricing. 

    The most valuable features include warranty and firmware support, stability, security, good performance, flexibility, etc. The Cisco Catalyst Switches have provided a stable solution for the organizations and are widely used, trusted, and well-known in the networking industry.

    PowerConnect Switches family offers a set of flexible, manageable and comprehensive switch solutions supporting up to 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) and optimized Internet iSCSI (iSCSI) performance with Dell Storage solutions, ideal for enterprise and campus LAN environments alike.
    Sample Customers
    Afni, Anilana Hotels and Resorts, Baylor Scott & White Health, Beachbody, Bellevue, Del Papa Distributing, Explorer Pipeline, Mindtree, Omaha World Herald, Radio 538, Sony Corporation, Telecom Italia, Telenor Arena
    Amerijet Holdings Inc., CGD Securities, MavenWire, Tulane University
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Computer Software Company14%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    University10%
    Manufacturing Company10%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Educational Organization54%
    Computer Software Company9%
    Government4%
    Manufacturing Company4%
    REVIEWERS
    Media Company19%
    Financial Services Firm13%
    Computer Software Company13%
    Engineering Company6%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company18%
    Government8%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    Comms Service Provider7%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business42%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise42%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business11%
    Midsize Enterprise58%
    Large Enterprise30%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business63%
    Midsize Enterprise20%
    Large Enterprise17%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business30%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise52%
    Buyer's Guide
    Cisco Catalyst Switches vs. Dell PowerConnect Switches
    May 2024
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Catalyst Switches vs. Dell PowerConnect Switches and other solutions. Updated: May 2024.
    772,422 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco Catalyst Switches is ranked 1st in LAN Switching with 171 reviews while Dell PowerConnect Switches is ranked 3rd in LAN Switching with 31 reviews. Cisco Catalyst Switches is rated 8.6, while Dell PowerConnect Switches is rated 8.0. The top reviewer of Cisco Catalyst Switches writes "Reliable and stable catalyst switch; can be easily installed". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Dell PowerConnect Switches writes "Excellent support, good pricing, and easy setup". Cisco Catalyst Switches is most compared with Arista Networks Platform, Cisco Nexus, HPE ProCurve, ExtremeSwitching and Aruba Instant On Switches, whereas Dell PowerConnect Switches is most compared with Cisco Nexus, HPE ProCurve, NETGEAR Switches, Arista Networks Platform and Dell PowerSwitch N-Series. See our Cisco Catalyst Switches vs. Dell PowerConnect Switches report.

    See our list of best LAN Switching vendors and best Data Center Networking vendors.

    We monitor all LAN Switching reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.