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Does Using 3rd Party SFP Void the Warranty of the Equipment It Is Used On?

Does Using 3rd Party SFP Void the Warranty of the Equipment It Is Used On?

The cost of fiber optic transceivers, such as optical SFP, SFP+, XFP, QSFP+ and CFP optics keeps adding up over time. And the cost of the transceivers is high when sourced from Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) like Cisco, HP and Juniper. On the surface, there are some advantages to implementing a “brand homogenous” network. However, savings from purchasing aftermarket transceivers far exceeds the economic value of brand homogeneity when facing the huge pricing disparity in fiber optic transceiver pricing between OEMs and many 3rd party. That is the reason why so many network operators have been switching in droves to 3rd party optics over the past few years.

Warranty-voidActually, salespeople for the big OEMs and their authorized distributors try to get as price competitive as they can. However, their hands are largely tied by contractual agreements specifying minimum sell prices. Though they keep trying to lower their bottom line of price, they are still much higher than the 3rd party optics as their layers of profitable relationships. Except the price, the arguments regarding quality are rife. In fact, every people who has the experience of using 3rd party transceivers knows that the performances of both OEM and 3rd party optics are the same, of course, excluding the inferior-quality optics from the unreliable vendors. And after having long-term arguments regarding quality, availability and support issues rebuffed, the occasional desperate OEM salesperson will play their last card and claim that installed 3rd party optics in the switch will void equipment warranty. This caused much discussion among the users.

Will using 3rd party transceiver modules void the switch warranty?

The short answer is No. If the equipment is defective, the vendors are obliged to fulfill the terms of the warranty because good 3rd party optics are fully compliant to MSA (Multi-Source Agreement), unless it can be verified that it is the use of the 3rd party optics that damaged the equipment.

However, it is unlikely that fiber optic transceivers will induce damages to the slot on equipment by itself. Take an SFP optic for example:

  • SFP converts electrical data from the equipment to optical signal. There is no incoming power surge from optical ports to damage the equipment.
  • SFP draws voltage/power from the equipment and it is more likely that the equipment damaged the SFP. All current and voltage required are as per MSA and the equipment should be able to support the power requirements for each SFP ports.
  • SFP size will fit accordingly to any MSA compliant device without damaging the electrical circuitry on the equipment.
  • If installations of SFP modules are handled by personnel who are properly grounded, there is no electrostatic damage to the equipment circuitry.

Note: Some network equipment vendors try to protect the sales revenue of their optics by denying support if the serial number does not match their record. Fiberstore offers high-compatibility fiber optic transceivers by finding out the complete and perfect solution for the series’ encryption of many major brands, e.g. Cisco, HP etc.

In addition to the technical issues, the reason equipment vendors cannot void your warranty is that they are prohibited by law from doing so. Voiding of a warranty in this situation would be violating what is defined in the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1975 (15 United States Code section 2302(c)) as a “Tie-In Sales” provision.

Of course, you should be aware of that the equipment warranty would not cover any 3rd party optics deployed in their switches. Though sometimes the OEM salespersons try to exaggerate this as if it is an odd, difficult or exceptional issue, the truth is a typical network is composed of many devices from many different manufacturers, with each device supported by its manufacturer’s warranty. For instance, you use Cisco switch, HP server, and other brands of fiber optic compatible transceivers, e.g. Fiberstore Compatible Optics in your network, so that you should enjoy your warranty right from Cisco for your switch, and from HP for your server, as well as lifetime warranty from Fiberstore for your optics.

Fiberstore SFPAs the leading global manufacturer and supplier of compatible optical transceiver modules, Fiberstore always specialized in compatibility breakthrough and insisted on the high performance of the optical components/lasers. At present, Fiberstore has already established a comprehensive inventory of fiber optic transceivers. Most of the common used transceivers which are designed to be compatible with many major brands are in stock and with very competitive prices. Additionally, more discounts are available for bulk orders. For more information about compatible SFP prices, please contact us directly over e-mail

Special Offers & Ready Stock Products
Model# Description Price
SFP-1G85-5MDA NEW Cisco GLC-SX-MMD Compatible 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m EXT DDM Transceivers US$6/ea
SFP-1G31-10 NEW Cisco GLC-LH-SM Compatible 1000BASE-LX/LH SFP 1310nm 10km Transceivers US$10/ea

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About DDM, DOM and RGD in SFP Transceiver Module

About DDM, DOM and RGD in SFP Transceiver Module

SFP transceiverIf it is your first purchase of SFP transceivers, you may be very confused with the fuction options “DDM”, “DOM” or “RGD”. So, what functons do they represent? And do you need these functions? Today, we will have a detailed explanation of them.

What’s DDM?
DDM, namely Digital Diagnostics Monitoring, is a technology used in SFP transceivers in order to give the end user the ability to monitor real-time parameters of the SFPs. Such parameters include optical output power, optical input power, temperature, laser bias current, and transceiver supply voltage etc.

What’s DOM?
DOM, short for Digital optical monitoring, is familiar with the DDM function. It is also a feature which allows you to monitor many parameters of the transceiver module in real-time. DOM allows you to monitor the TX (transmit) and RX (receive) of the module, as well as input/output power, temperature, and voltage. Network administrators can then check and ensure that the module is functioning correctly. (Related reading: How to Use DOM for All Transceivers Type in The Cisco System)

Author Note: Obviously a SFP with DDM/DOM funstion is high-ender than one which without it. This is why most of modern optical SFP transceivers support DDM/DOM functions according to the industry-standard SFF-8472.

What’s RGD?
You may be confused with the difference with the SFPs with “RGD” and the one without it, or you may be interested in the “-RGD” in the product number of some SFP transceiver modules, like cisco GLC-SX-MMD-RGD. So, what does RGD stand for? RGD means rugged transceivers. In fact, these are enhanced transceiver modules which have been designed for greater durability, and can operate under more extreme conditions. Rugged transceivers may feature enhanced ESD protection, and extended operating temperature range so that it can help eliminate field failures without the need of costly external protection devices.

Author Note: In general, a rugged SFP can be identified by its product model, ie. -RGD. Specific situations depend on the specific vendors.

Other Functions in SFP transceivers
If you have an experience of buying Cisco SFPs, you may be confused with the part number with “=”, like GLC-SX-MMD vs GLX-SX-MMD=, because you can not find out the difference with the one without “=” according to the specification. In fact, “=” is also called a “FRU” part where FRU stands for “Field Replaceable Units”. Those are the parts that can be used as “spare” or be shipped individually to replace damaged units. But the new parts that are ordered directly from a reseller or from Cisco usually don’t come with the = sign. Thus, if you want to buy an SFP transceiver with the “FRU” part, you should ask your vendor to ensure this function.

Recommended Products With These Functions

What’s Your Opinion Of Using 3rd Party SFP Modules On Cisco Catalyst Switch?

What’s Your Opinion Of Using 3rd Party SFP Modules On Cisco Catalyst Switch?

In general, the cost of an original brand SFP module is more expensive than a 3rd party one. Take Cisco 1000BASE-SX SFP (GLC-SX-MMD) for example, the list price of Cisco is about $ 500.00, but you can easily find a 3rd party SFP modules that can take a discount at up to 90% off. As the cost of SFP transceiver keep adding up over time, many labs or companies are seeking for SFP alternatives to help cut down the costs on these expensive modules.

However, a frequent customer problem with Cisco’s new line of Catalyst switches is that they do not support 3rd party (non-Cisco) SFPs – or at least they do not seem to. If you’ve just replaced your network switches and tried using any 3rd party SFPs to connect your network backbone, you’ll quickly stumble across an error similar to the following:

Error message
%PHY-4-UNSUPPORTED_TRANSCEIVER: Unsupported transceiver found in Gi1/0/0
%GBIC_SECURITY_CRYPT-4-VN_DATA_CRC_ERROR: GBIC in port 65538 has bad crc

When you see this error, it means that your Cisco Catalyst switch has just disabled the GBIC port. Why? When a SFP is inserted into a switch’s GBIC port, the switch immediately reads a number of values from the SFP and if it doesn’t like what it sees, it throws the above error message and disables the port. Simple to understand, your Cisco Catalyst switches are configured by default not to work with the 3rd party (non-Cisco) SFPs.

As we know, all SFP modules contain a number of recorded values in their EEPROM that include:

  • Vendor Name
  • Vendor ID
  • Serial Number
  • Security Code
  • CRC

How To Solve This Issue & Successfully Use 3rd Party SFPs On Your Cisco Switch
When the errors displayed, many users will be very nervous and even begin to regret using the 3rd party SFPs. Is there no hope for a solution when facing such situation? Just be relax, the following content will give you some tips on it.

There are two undocumented commands which can be used to force the Cisco Catalyst switch to enable the GBIC port and use the 3rd party SFP.

3750G-Stack(config)# service unsupported-transceiver

Warning: When Cisco determines that a fault or defect can be traced to the use of third-party transceivers installed by a customer or reseller, then, at Cisco’s discretion, Cisco may withhold support under warranty or a Cisco support program. In the course of providing support for a Cisco networking product Cisco may require that the end user install Cisco transceivers if Cisco determines that removing third-party parts will assist Cisco in diagnosing the cause of a support issue.

3750G-Stack(config)# no errdisable detect cause gbic-invalid

When entering the “service unsupported-transceiver” command, the switch (eg. 3750G) will automatically throw a warning message as a last hope to prevent the usage of a 3rd party SFP. The “no errdisable detect cause gbic-invalid” command will help ensure the GBIC port is not disabled when inserting an invalid GIBC. In addition, since the service unsupported-transceiver is undocumented, if you try searching for the command with the usual method “service ?”, you won’t find it.

According to the test, Cisco 2960G, 3560G, 3750G, 4507R and 4507R-E Catalyst switches all accept both “service unsupported-transceiver” & “no errdisable detect cause gbic-invalid commands” commands without a problem. In fact, if the Catalyst switch is running IOS 12.2(25)SE and above, the undocumented commands are available. Thus, you could feel relieved to use compatible SFP module for cisco 2960 switch or find cisco 3560 SFP modules from 3rd party optics vendor.

Opinion on 3rd Party SFP Modules
People have different opinions on “Whether I should use 3rd party SFPs”. It seems a difficult question for them as the attractive price but unknown performance of the 3rd SFPs. In fact, take Catalyst 3750 Series Switches for example, starting from 12.2(25)SE release, the user has the option via CLI to turn on the support for 3rd party SFPs. However, you should remember that the Cisco TAC will not support such 3rd party SFPs. In the event of any link error involving such 3rd party SFPs the customer will have to replace 3rd party SFPs with Cisco SFPs before any troubleshooting can be done by TAC.

Thus, it is very necessary to use quality assurance SFP modules. Actually, there are some high quality SFP modules OEM vendors, such as Fiberstore. You would not worry about the compatibility of the usage. Because there is a perfect system from the production to shipment. All the products are tested before they shipped and ensure the 100% compatible and high quality. In addition, you can save more as the price is also very competitive.

Some common types of SFPs supported on Cisco Catalyst 3750 Series Switches

Difference between Cisco SFP Module GLC-SX-MM and GLC-SX-MMD

Difference between Cisco SFP Module GLC-SX-MM and GLC-SX-MMD

With the widespread used with the Cisco switches and routers, Cisco’s GBIC transceivers and Small Form-factor Pluggables (SFP) transceivers for Gigabit Ethernet and Fibre Channel applications have also been popular in the market. These small, modular optical interface transceivers offer a convenient and cost effective solution for the adoption of Gigabit Ethernet and Fibre Channel in data center, campus, metropolitan area access and ring networks, and storage area networks. The 1000BASE-SX SFP (ie, the GLC-SX-MM and GLC-SX-MMD) is one of the common types of Cisco SFPs. Compatible with the IEEE 802.3z 1000BASE-SX standard, it operates on legacy 50 μm multimode fiber links up to 550 m and on 62.5 μm Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI)-grade multimode fibers up to 220 m. It can support up to 1km over laser-optimized 50 μm multimode fiber cable.

Due to the similar model, users are usually confused with the Cisco GLC-SX-MM and Cisco GLC-SX-MMD when they are choosing the SFP modules. So, what’s the difference between them? We are going to talk something about the difference between GLC-SX-MM and GLC-SX-MMD in this paper. (Note: Cisco GLC-SX-MMD= which refers SFP transceiver with the “FRU” part doesn’t be included here.)

As their models suggest, there is only little difference between GLC-SX-MM and GLC-SX-MMD, Obviously the “D”. Here, letter D in the model means the DOM functionality. DOM stands for Digital Optical Monitoring. Digital Optical Monitoring (DOM) is an industry wide standard, intended to define a digital interface to access real-time operating parameters such as:

  • Optical Tx power
  • Optical Rx power
  • Laser bias current
  • Temperature
  • Transceiver supply voltage

Which means you can configure your device to monitor optical transceivers in the system, either globally or by specified ports. When this feature is enabled, the system will monitor the temperature and signal power levels for the optical transceivers in the specified ports. Console messages and syslog messages are sent when optical operating conditions fall below or rise above the XFP or SFP manufacturer’s recommended thresholds. It is an useful function and now is very popular with users.

It is worth noting that the GLC-SX-MM SFP has been no longer for sale since March 8, 2013 in Cisco. It is entirely replaced by GLC-SX-MMD. Cisco official encourages the customers to migrate to new model SFP transceiver modules. However, for usage and cost considerations, many users still use the old model SFPs. GLC-SX-MMD is much more expensive than GLC-SX-MM, but except the additional DOM function, they work as the same when use in the switch. This is why GLC-SX-MM is still used by many users. To a great extent, this situation is caused by the cost. Fiberstore offers a low cost option for you in both GLC-SX-MM and GLC-SX-MMD. No matter you still like to use the GLC-SX-MM, or wanna replace the new version GLC-SX-MMD, you can find the corresponding products in Fiberstore with a very low price and do not worry about the quality because all of Fiberstore’s Cisco compatible SFP modules are tested in-house prior to shipment to guarantee that they will arrive in perfect physical and working condition before delivered worldwide. In addition, there is a big stock of these two products, you can enjoy the same-day shipping when you order them in Fiberstore.

Product Recommendation
NEW Cisco GLC-SX-MMD Compatible 1000BASE-SX SFP 850nm 550m EXT DDM Transceiver Module


Key Features

  • Data-rate of 1.25Gbps/1.063Gbps operation
  • 850nm VCSEL laser and PIN photodetector for 550m transmission
  • Hot-pluggable SFP footprint duplex LC connector Interface
  • Class 1 FDA and IEC60825-1 Laser Safety Compliant
  • Compatible with SFP MSA
  • Compatible with SFF-8472
  • +3.3V single power supply and TTL Logic Interface
  • Average Output Power:-9.5~ -3dBm
  • Receiver Sensitivity:-17dBm
  • Extended temperature range (EXT):-5 to 85°C
  • Built-in Digital Diagnostic Function


  • Fiber Channel Links
  • Gigabit Ethernet Links
  • Fast Ethernet Links
  • Other Optical Links


The General Concerns of Using Cisco Compatible SFP

The General Concerns of Using Cisco Compatible SFP

It seems to be an old topic that whether using compatible fiber optic transceiver is reliable. We have already discussed this topic few weeks ago. Without a doubt, the answer is affirmative.

compatible setup

However, I have found that there are still many questions about this topic in many forums, Q & A sites etc, and most of them are about Cisco compatible SFP. As we know, Cisco is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate, and owns the most of the switching and routing markets, ie. there are plenty of users of Cisco. In order to ensure the safety and smooth communication of the system, a good switch or router is very necessary, but the cost for other components, such as Cisco SFP modules, usually can add up over time. Due to the open standard of the fiber optic transceiver, the compatible modules have been emerged as the times require. Compared to the original brand, the low cost is really the attractions of of the compatible one. However, it is precisely because the incredible low price, many users usually worry about the quality. This is why we often find the discussion about the compatibility.

Today, I am going to continue the topic about the reliability of Cisco compatible transceiver module through a post in Yahoo Answer. The source of the post.

After reading the post, we found that it is a general situation when we decide to buy some SFP modules for your Cisco devices. In the post, the poster want to buy some SFP modules of the model “glc-sx-mmd“. In general, if we have enough budget, we will buy the Cisco original without the slightest hesitation. Maybe just wanna choose some proper suppliers, or wanna save more, he surfs on the Internet and finds a supplier that offers Cisco SFP only on sale $ 8.00. “it is incredible, is it real?” We can hear him from his tone full of surprise. Through visiting the link he gave, we can know the $ 8.00 Cisco compatible SFP is one of the products of Fiberstore.

Do you have a similar experience like the poster? I think, many users have. But to this qustion, there were divergent views that we can easily see from the answer in this post.

The answer of Yahoo user “I Like Stories” has been selected by the poster as the best answer that give us a full answer of his opinion as well as the reason why original modules is so expensive.

the best answer selected by poster

Although he has not clearly indicated whether the compatible modules should be chosen, his opinion is objective.

In most cases, we are biased in favour of the original one due to the stability and good after-sale service of Cisco, or other famous brand. As we said above, if the budget is enough, the original one is the best choice. However, the continued cost of the SFP is too much for many enterprise or lab. In front of the limitation of the cost, a good quality and competitive price module becomes very necessary. That’s why the compatible SFP modules are popular in the market.

From the other comments or the similar topics in many forums, we are not difficult to discover that most of the users have the experience of using Cisco compatible SFP. And few of them have bad impression, except some complaints when applied in high security environment, the compatible one not work well as the original one, or even the wrong selection of an unqualified vendor or using the products of bad quality.

Actually, about the definition of the third party SFP transceiver, there is an explanation of the compatibility. 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. In fact, many times, the main concerns of using compatible SFP is the quality and after sale service. If your supplier tells you their compatible SFP is 100% compatible with Cisco’s or any other brands, then you can rest assured to buy as now many suppliers have the service of lifetime warranty, but the premise is you shoud choose a good supplier. Using compatible SFP modules (eg. Cisco, HP etc.) is that you won’t sacrifice any quality or reliability with all of the savings you receive. In fact, you get everything you’ve come to expect from Cisco SFPs at a low cost.

sfp-1g85-5mda-co1OK, at last, we return to the post of Yahoo answer. Is the $ 8.00 Cisco compatible SFP reliable? If it is offered by other suppliers, I can’t ensure it to you. But it is from Fiberstore, I think I can guarantee its authenticity and quality not to mention the other, just from the reviews. In addition, many famous enterprises in the world also use Fiberstore’s products. The blog of CloudFlare had mentioned Fiberstore’s SFP+ modules in their news about the latest generation servers — “We spent significant time testing a combination of SFP+ vendors before finding Fiberstore, a SFP+ and supplier manufacturer from which we could directly source SFP+s at a reasonable and low price that worked in the network gear we wanted to use.”

fiberstore reviews

So, what’s your opinion? In my opinion, if you have enough budget, I suggest you to buy the original one. It doesn’t mean that the compatible one is as not good as the original one but you could save more time in thinking of this question.  If you care the cost, compatible one is the best choice, but you should choose a good supplier as the premise. If you are still confused by the similar question, I hope this article will give you some help.