Cisco Catalyst 2960 vs. Cisco Catalyst 3560- A comparison review

Are you interested in comparing various Cisco catalyst Series to determine which one is better? I am too; here is Cisco Catalyst 2960 vs. Cisco Catalyst 3560 for more.

The Cisco catalyst series of Switches is a Large family that include various types of switch, with multiple generations of technology embedded on there. Below is the comparison review for the Cisco 3560 and 2960 switches. In it, you will find an elaborate review highlighting what each of these has to offer.

Take a look at some of the product highlights on these series, their features and the difference between the 3560 and 2960

What are the differences between Cisco Catalyst 2960 and Cisco Catalyst 3560?

Cisco Catalyst 2960
Cisco Catalyst 3560
Fixed configuration managed
Fixed configuration managed
Intelligence services
Layer Networking Access
Layer 2 switch
Layer 2-4 switch
Cisco IOS
Available as LAN Base and LAN Lite
Available as IP Lite feature set

Cisco Catalyst 2960 vs. Cisco Catalyst 3560- How do they compare

Performance and Scalability

The main difference between the Cisco 2960 and Cisco 3560 series is greatly highlighted by the disparity in their performance. Since the Cisco 2960 is a layer 2 edge switch, it is incapable of availing some of the advanced functions layer 2+3 switches can, making the Cisco 3560 a better option.

Routing protocols

As mentioned above, 3560 models are designed to operate at Layer 2 and Layer 3. For this reason, they can access various routing protocols and carry out different advanced functions on the network operation. Since the 2960 is limited in this capacity, it loses to the 3560 in this respect.

Cisco IOS feature set

Both the 2960 and 3560 models have the Cisco IOS software integrated into the design. However, 2960 series feature LAN Base and LAN Lite editions while 3560 models feature IP Lite which accommodated advanced capabilities unlike the limited LAN editions.

Cisco Catalyst 2960 vs. Cisco Catalyst 3560- Comparison Review

Cisco Catalyst 2960

The Cisco 2960 collection is one intelligent Ethernet based switches. These models are enabled with various features and including FE and GE connectivity, with reasonable deployment applications. Ideally, these Switches are meant for operational excellence over entry level enterprise networks, midmarket organization and even office branches. Intelligence services offered by the 2960 models are important in improving different aspects of the network


These, these are Fixed configuration stand alone switches designed with a wide array of integrated features. Starting off with the general features, the 2960 offers a selection of intelligent features available at the network edge. Some of these include ACL’s, enhanced QoS and many others. Various intelligence services featuring rate limiting, multicasting and QoS play a key role in increasing bandwidth optimization on the network.

The 2960 series is an easy to configure, upgrade, troubleshoot and manage collection. They are powered with internal power supply system which is an auto-ranging unit supplying AC power to the Switch. Alternatively, users can connect to the Cisco RPS power system which offers a 675W redundancy system and contributes to the superior redundancy capabilities on these models.

Notably, these models are available in Cisco’s LAN image software. They are equipped with either LAN Base or LAN Lite. These devices are suitable for deployment within this line are made to suit entry level enterprises, mid market and even branch offices.

Some of the benefits of these series on the network include enhanced security within the network. Improved availability and scalability within the network can be attributed to various tools which when used in combination help drastically improve network uptime. Fault back up is provided for by the superior redundancy on these systems.

Security features integrated on these devices serves to d the following: to protect the information shared within the network, to restrict access and to maintain uninterrupted functioning within the network.


Cisco Catalyst 2960L-24PS-LL Network Switch, 24 Gigabit Ethernet PoE+ Ports, 195W PoE Budget, 4 1G SFP Uplink Ports, Fanless Operation, Enhanced Limited (WS-C2960L-24PS-LL)
  • ETHERNET PORT CONFIGURATION: 24 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet ports, 4 1G SFP uplink ports
  • POWER: Power budget of 195W with Perpetual PoE+ support for uninterrupted power to PoE devices, even in...

The Cisco 2960 24 port switch features a 16 Gbps bandwidth performance and a 38.7 Mpps forwarding rate. It supports up to 15.4W for fast ethernet connectivity with POE. The model supports jumbo frames which ensure optimum performance even with heavy demand applications. Included Gigabit Ethernet 10/100/1000 ports can be managed through a single IP address, working for up to 16 switches. Enhanced troubleshooting options and a range of software features increase its overall ease of use. It offers power consumption control protocols, including a per port consumption management and a Cisco Discovery Protocol for granular power output.

Additional features POE MIB technology which helps to control different power threshold levels. The 2960 offers Smart Install, Auto Smartports and autonegotiation which offer automated configuration with use. It also offers advanced intelligent management tools which configure, troubleshoot, report on inventory, synchronize passwords and secure wireless use.

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Cisco Catalyst 3560

The 3560 series features a wide collection of features which allow for use over different applications. Overall, the devices on this line are engineered to increase network availability with incorporated network wide distributed intelligence services and enhanced security and control features.


Cisco describes this line as a Fixed Configuration line up of Switches, all of which delver improvements within the network. In fact, the collection features various features allowing Access Layer functionality for LAN networks. Speaking of Layers, this switching portfolio is well suited to offer uninterrupted performance over Layer 2- Layer 4 access.

Powered by Cisco’s IOS software, the 3560 collection promises improved availability across the network. The models include IP Base and IP Service editions both of which are geared to p. Moreover, the Cisco IOS software support ensure improved availability within the operation, with optimized

Connectivity on 3560 includes both Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet configurations enhanced with Power Over Ethernet capabilities. Integrated POE on this collection Moreover, the line allows for clustering over a single IP address using various management tools.

Some of the benefits the 3560 models bring to the table include: advanced multilayer granular QoS, ACLs, rate limiting and much more. With these, set up, use, management and troubleshooting become quite convenient.

Cisco 3560-24PS-S

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The Cisco 3560 is a backwards compatible 24 port standalone switch that supports stacking. It offers a forwarding rate of 55.5 Mpps and a bandwidth performance of 160 Gbps. Available 24 10/100/1000 ports support POE and UPOE protocols, ensuring efficient power consumption. This model supports efficient energy Ethernet, as well as features a dual redundant power source. It is designed with Smart Install, autonegotiation and Auto Smartport technology, which reconfigure and calibrate your switch when connected to compatible additions. The Cisco 3560-24PS-Swill work well with other switches, with Flexible Netflow doing away with any need to reconfigure your switch when expanding your system. It is for high performance standards, with jumbo frames for enhanced output for high demand applications. The Cisco 3650 offers secure and flexible authentication, with additional perks such as IP guard and DCHP snooping. It also offers additional security features to ensure rounded protection.

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Cisco 2960
Cisco 3560-24PS-S
Forwarding rate
38.7 Mpps
55.5 Mpps
Number of ports
Jumbo frames
Integrated security


Overall, both the 2960 and 3560 offer reliable solution to many complex networking issues. It must be said however, the Cisco 2560 offers greater switching performance with more advanced features.

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