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My generic question is: Can you mix switches on the opposite sides of a fibre link, or more accurately different manufactuors tranceivers.

We just bought several new HP ProCurve v1810 series switches (J9450A and J9660A) and the correct HP fibre SFP's (J4858C).

We have old existing HP ProCurve 2124 (J4868A) and 2324 (J4818A)'s with non SFP fibre connections (using SC connectors i think) which i'm going to get different patch leads (ST-LC) to connect to the newer switches.

But we also have a newer fibre link setup with small Level1 4 port & 1 SFP switches (GSW-0508) with their SFP.

With the Level1 switch+SFP work if plugged into a HP ProCurve V1810+SFP via fibre?

I understand about the problems with mix+matching SFP's

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Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn't. Crappy answer, but I've had situations where it works well and a handful of cases where it simply didn't. –  ewwhite Jun 14 '12 at 12:49
    
So a case of 'try it and see'?! Can i damage SFP's by doing this or will they simply fail to communicate? –  HaydnWVN Jun 14 '12 at 12:55
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3 Answers

As long as the type of link is the same (eg 10G SR) and you have the appropriate physical connectors you should be fine. Incidentally, unless there is a patch panel somewhere in the mix it is unlikely you have any ST. You probably want SC - LC if you are going from an older XFP/XENPAK module to an SFP+.

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What does the 10G SR signify? We're using 1000BASE-SX (multimode)... There are patch panels with ST ends (old and new) hence me looking at new dropleads to integrate the older fibre run :) –  HaydnWVN Jun 15 '12 at 10:44
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Sorry - misread.. 1000baseSX is fine. If you can get the physical connectors right and the fiber types match up then you are good to go. –  rnxrx Jun 15 '12 at 13:01
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As long as you are going from a 1000Base-SX to 1000Base-SX or 1000Base-LX to 1000Base-LX interface (whether the interface is fixed or SFP based) you should be ok. The specs for those specify accepted laser wavelengths. Make sure any patches made to adapt connector types match the core diameter of the other fiber being used though to avoid cable attenuation from reflections at the adapter. The link you provided was about certain manufacturers checking the serial number of the SFP module to make sure you are using their branded units, that would determine if the switch shows the Layer 1 interface not whether data link signals from another switch work.

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Our new run is 50/125 (clearly labelled) yet the older isn't - can i find this out written on the cable itself? Or is there another way? I understand what my link explains about mixing and matching SFP's, we are currently not intending to do this. My question was aimed more at mixing the network equipment at each end, rather than mixing the SFP's. –  HaydnWVN Jun 15 '12 at 11:33
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up vote 1 down vote accepted

It seems matching the newer Level1 GSW-0508 to the newer HP v1810-G48 works, but connecting an older HP 2324 to the newer v1810-G48 doesn't! (2324 shows a link, v1810 doesn't).

SFP from the Level1 GSW-0508 also isn't compatible with the HP v1810-G48.

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