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How compatible are sfp modules between devices. For example, am I likely to be able to plug something like this into a cisco, hp, or other switch with mini gbic ports?

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I have been asked the question many times in my technical support role at Netwerks UK. If a device requires coded SFP modules (i.e. Cisco / HP) then you need either the OEM module or a compatible version. If the device does not require coded SFP (i.e. Netgear) then you can use any SFP, even a Cisco.

Please see this document regarding the compatibility of SFP's and also a FAQ I put together in an attempt to straighten out some of the confusion on this topic.

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Actually, on Cisco gear you can disable the need for coded SFPs. Good luck getting support in that config, but you can do it. – MDMarra Sep 14 '12 at 21:02
n.b On Cisco platforms the command "service unsupported-transceiver" is generally available in NxOS and IOS versions. The command won't autocomplete and, as is implied, it is unsupported but allows the use of 3rd party optics. – rnxrx Sep 15 '12 at 0:37

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