The Juniper QFX5100-48S Switches: Fast, Feature-Rich, and Simple

- Posted by Author: admin in Category: Networking |

What are networking switches?

As the foundation of any network, switches play a critical role in enabling connectivity and ensuring optimal performance. Juniper’s QFX Series switches are designed to meet the needs of today’s high-performance networks. With a rich set of features and simple configuration, the QFX Series is an ideal choice for both traditional and virtualized environments.

Switches are devices that connect different parts of a computer network together. A switch allows networked devices to communicate with each other by forwarding packets of data between them. Switches typically operate at Layer 2 (the data link layer) or Layer 3 (the network layer) of the OSI model.

Layer 2 switches use Media Access Control (MAC) addresses to forward packets, while Layer 3 switches use IP addresses. MAC addresses are unique identifiers assigned to each network interface, while IP addresses identify the host within the network.

Most switches support multiple ports, which can be used to connect multiple devices to the switch. Ports can be either physical or logical, depending on the type of switch. Physical ports are used to connect devices using cables, while logical ports are used to connect devices using the software.

Switches can be either standalone or stackable. Standalone switches are independent units that are not interconnected with other switches. Stackable switches are interconnected with other stackable switches using special cables and connectors. This allows for increased scalability and redundancy.

There are three main types of switches used in networking: managed, unmanaged, and layer 3. Managed switches are the most complex and expensive, but offer the greatest control over your network. Unmanaged switches are much simpler and cheaper, but you have very little control over how they operate. Layer 3 switches are somewhere in between, offering more features and flexibility than unmanaged switches but not as many as managed switches.

Overview of Juniper QFX5100 switches

The QFX-S is a high-performance switch that offers a number of features that make it ideal for use in enterprise networks. It supports up to 128 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet, making it perfect for supporting large numbers of devices and users. The switch also supports advanced features such as Quality of Service (QoS) and Virtual Local Area Networks (VLANs).

What makes the QFX-S particularly attractive is its simplicity. The switch can be easily configured using Juniper’s web-based management interface. This makes it easy to deploy and manage even for inexperienced users.

Overall, the QFX-S is an excellent choice for enterprise networks that need high performance and advanced features. Its simplicity makes it easy to deploy and manage, while its performance ensures that it can support even the most demanding applications.

The QFX5100 line includes 10GbE (fiber and copper) and 40GbE fixed-configuration options with rich Layer 2, Layer 3, and MPLS features. The QFX5100 runs the same reliable, high-performance Juniper Networks Junos® operating system that is used by Juniper Networks EX Series Ethernet Switches, Juniper Networks routers, and Juniper Networks SRX Series Services Gateways, ensuring a consistent implementation and operation of control plane features across the entire Juniper infrastructure. 

Featuring a built-in Insight Technology capability, the QFX5100 provides valuable performance and troubleshooting data via microburst monitoring and hotspot statistics. The QFX5100 can also be used in Juniper’s Virtual Chassis switching architecture.

What are the different models of the Juniper QFX5100 Switches?

The QFX5100 line includes four compact 1 U models and one 2 U model, each providing wire-speed packet performance, very low latency, and a rich set of Junos OS features. In addition to a high throughput Packet Forwarding Engine (PFE), the performance of the control plane running on all QFX5100 models is further enhanced with a powerful 1.5 GHz dual-core Intel CPU with 8 GB of memory and 32 GB SSD storage.

QFX5100-48S: Compact 1 U 10GbE data center access switch with 48 small form-factor pluggable and pluggable plus (SFP/SFP+) transceiver ports and six quad SFP+ (QSFP+) ports with an aggregate throughput of 1.44 Tbps or 1.08 Bpps per switch.

QFX5100-48T: Compact 1 U 10GbE data center access switch with 48 tri-speed (10GbE/1GbE/100 Mbps) RJ-45 ports and six QSFP+ ports with an aggregate throughput of 1.44 Tbps or 1.08 Bpps per switch.

QFX5100-24Q: Compact 1 U high-density 40GbE data center access and aggregation switch starting at a base density of 24 QSFP+ ports with the option to scale to 32 QSFP+ ports with two four-port expansion modules. All 32 ports support wire-speed performance with an aggregate throughput of 2.56 Tbps or 1.44 Bpps per switch.

QFX5100-24Q-AA: Compact 1U high-density data center switch starting with a base density of 24 QSFP+ ports. With the addition of an optional double-wide QFX-PFA-4Q Packet Flow Accelerator (PFA) expansion module, the switch can morph into an intelligent application acceleration system.

Features of Juniper QFX5100-48S switch

Topology-Independent In-Service Software Upgrade (TISSU*): With its Intel core processor, the QFX5100 allows Junos OS to run within a virtual machine (VM) on Linux. Junos OS runs in two separate VMs in active and standby pairs; during software upgrade cycles, the switches seamlessly move to the newer software version while maintaining intact data plane traffic. 

Automation: The QFX5100 switches support a number of features for network automation and plug-and-play operations. Features include zero-touch provisioning, operations and event scripts, automatic rollback, and Python scripting. The switch also offers support for integration with VMware NSX Layer 2 Gateway Services, Puppet, and OpenStack.

Flexible Forwarding Table: The QFX5100’s Flexible Forwarding Table (FFT) allows the hardware table to be carved into configurable partitions of Layer 2 media access control (MAC), Layer 3 host, and Longest Prefix Match (LPM) tables. In a pure L2 environment, the QFX5100 supports 288,000 MAC addresses. In L3 mode, the table can support 128,000 host entries, and in LPM mode, it can support 128,000 prefixes.

Intelligent Buffer Management: The QFX5100 switches have a total of 12 MB shared buffers. While 25% of the total buffer space is dedicated, the rest is shared among all ports and is user configurable. The intelligent buffer mechanism in the QFX5100 effectively absorbs traffic bursts while providing deterministic performance, significantly increasing performance over static allocation.

Insight Technology for Analytics: The QFX5100 provides dynamic buffer utilization monitoring and reporting with an interval of 10 milliseconds to provide microburst and latency insight. The data can be viewed via CLI, system log, or streamed to external servers for more analysis. Supported reporting formats include Java Script Object Notification (JSON), CSV, and TSV. These files can be consumed by orchestration systems, SDN controllers, or network management applications to make better network design decisions and identify network hotspots.

Why the Juniper QFX5100-48S Switch is a good choice for your business

As businesses move more of their critical applications and data to the cloud, they need a networking solution that can keep up with the demands of a fast-paced, always-on environment. The Juniper QFX5100-48S Switch is a high-performance, scalable switch that is designed for exactly this purpose. With 48 ports of 10 Gigabit Ethernet and 6 ports of 40 Gigabit Ethernet, the QFX5100-48S can support even the most demanding networks. Additionally, the switch includes several features that make it easy to manage and troubleshoot, making it a great choice for businesses of all sizes.


The Juniper QFX5100-48S switches are a great choice for businesses that need fast and feature-rich switching solutions. With 48 10GbE SFP+ ports, the switches provide plenty of connectivity for even the most demanding networks. And with support for QoS, VLANs, and other advanced features, the switches can handle just about any networking task you throw at them. Best of all, the switches are easy to configure and manage, so you’ll be up and running in no time. If you’re looking for a high-performance switching solution, the Juniper QFX5100-48S is a great option to consider.