Is the GLC-SX-MMD Transceiver Right for Your Network?

Growing businesses typically requires higher-bandwidth networks. It is an unavoidable trend. The old-decade technology like Base-T Ethernet works just fine for small office, but it isn’t sufficient to handle heavier network. Thus if you are in the situation to consider purchasing a large property, or opening up a second office, it is time for you to think about upgrading to Gigabit Ethernet, which moves at ten times the speed of traditional Ethernet. However, there are a number of issues involved in a major network infrastructure transition.

When planning a move to gigabit Ethernet, one of the most urgent concerns is how much new hardware designers have to purchase. The basic components like fiber optic cable and optical transceiver modules are indispensable. These inexpensive Small Form-factor Pluggable (SFP) slots allow transceivers like the GLC-SX-MMD to be plugged in and provide instant gigabit Ethernet connectivity. The Cisco standard SFP transceiver allows data rate of 1000Mbps with DOM support. The max transmission distance is 550m over OM2 multimode fiber. So here comes the question, is the GLC-SX-MMD transceiver (see in Figure 1) right for your network?


Fiber Optic Gigabit Ethernet vs Twisted Copper

As noted before, GLC-SX-MMD transceiver operates over multimode fiber at rate of up to 1000Mbps. Using copper-wire cabling or fiber optic cabling like above is the unsolved dilemma when contemplating a network. It is the common sense that fiber optic cabling is more expensive than twisted copper cabling, but fiber optic provides several advantages over copper with the same gigabit speeds.


First, fiber optic supports longer link distance than twisted copper. For instance, copper can only run for around 100 meters, whereas fiber can go between 200 and 500 feet, or more, without signal loss. Fiber has given off no radio interference, allowing it to coexist more easily in an office with a lot of wireless devices. Because of the lack of interference, fiber is also harder to hack into than copper. What’s more, for future proofing, moving away from copper is probably a good idea, as the fiber optics are growing steadily in popularity among businesses which have taken over large twisted-copper office buildings, created expansive complexes, or need to collaborate with remote offices in real time. Figure 2 shows a standard GLC-SX-MMD transceiver links fiber optic Ethernet with Cisco Switch.

Using a GLC-SX-MMD for Fiber Optic Gigabit Ethernet

GLC-SX-MMD, as a representative of the standard Cisco SFP, is widely utilized for short-reach Gigabit Ethernet. As we know, the biggest advantage of Cisco’s SFP system is that it’s entirely hot-swappable. It doesn’t matter what the device is, from servers to your switch to simple Ethernet cards: If it has an SFP port on it, it can support a multitude of transceivers for different functions, through one standardized interface. In fact, that standardization means that third parties can produce transceivers which are as good as official Cisco units.

Cisco even maintains a Compatibility Matrix, to help you pick the right transceiver for the job. So, if you decide that fiber optic gigabit Ethernet is what you need for your future business communications, the GLC-SX-MMD transceiver is truly simple to install and use. Simply plug it into your switch or other device, plug in the new network cable, and it should recognize the network in a few moments.


For those who still use copper network or lower-bandwidth application, it’s time for them to think about upgrading their infrastructure. And there are several different gigabit Ethernet standards out there, you can see which best fits your vision for the future of your business. Just keep in mind that you will need an optical transceiver like the GLC-SX-MMD to connect your existing devices to the new network. Fiberstore manufactures high-quality fiber optical transceivers, like 100BASE SFP, 1000BASE SFP, BiDi SFP, CWDM/DWDM SFP Transceiver Module and SONET/SDH SFP, besides Compatible GLC-SX-MMD transceiver with lower price. GLC-SX-MM-RGD and GLC-SX-MM are also offered. If you have any requirement of our products, please contact us directly.


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