I’ve always had a soft spot for 3com in a way with cost effective campus level switching i.e. (it’s cheap but has some fancy quirks!).
The original 3Com SuperStack series (which is obviously no more since the take over by HP) was a good series line offering feasible access layer for top of rack switching. I sound like a salesman here? The main requirements I’ve always had from them is ingress based traffic queueing/shaping at port level (not ACL based), dot1q vlans and snmp writing ability. From an automation point of view SNMP within a data centre can be crucial giving automated panels and front ends a ‘common’ communication path to access switches.
Over time i’ve seen a lot of the 4400 series which proved to be solid and stable for many years but more recently on a more negative note they seem to die of death with the main issue being when their management interfaces seem to stop responding to ARP requests and you can no longer reach them or communicate with them in any shape, way or form. It’s not a common fault i’ve found from the internet but i’ve seen plenty to conclude that it must be, in most cases a simple power on/off seems to resolve it but after a while this act in turn takes its toll on the device and will eventually call it a day with corrupt boot ups.
What can we conclude from this, well, switches 99% of the time are stable and reliable but with expanding networks, increased traffic (especially broadcast) issues are going to arise – if it’s not broke don’t fix it. In my line of work whenever we’ve seen 3coms showing signs of this behaviour we immediately recommend Cisco or similar as a replacement – specifically the 2960 series.