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Network Packet Broker

The EX6-3 is Cubro’s first hybrid Network Packet Broker that offers high port density for 10/100/1000 copper and fiber links, a comprehensive feature set, and the same intuitive management options found on all of Cubro’s Packetmaster line.

While media buzz focuses on 100G and 400G deployments, a great deal of customer sites simply need visibility and access to their 10/100/1000 links. The EX6-3, with a compelling list of features, is an excellent option for deployment in these environments.

A hybrid network packet broker combines the features of a common network switch and a network packet broker. The combination of the two offers better inline monitoring applications like traffic blocking (a feature similar to that of a Firewall). Another major advantage of a hybrid network packet broker is the cost because the switch and the network packet broker are in one unit and this saves cost and space. Additionally, there is no need for physical TAP which also reduces the cost.

The EX6-3 excels in mixed media environments where copper-based tools need access to fiber-based network infrastructure and vice versa. 48 SFP interfaces offer plenty of connectivity for all of your copper and fiber based tools as well as tapped network links.

The EX6-3 also offers 4 x 10G SFP+ interfaces. Granular filtering options and the ability to support session-aware load balancing keep slower tools relevant even in networks where the infrastructure has moved to 10G speeds.

The EX6-3 is also able to support legacy fiber standards in instances where there is a need to handle traffic such as 100BaseSX or 100Base-FX. The EX6-3 is an excellent option that helps bridge the gap between fiber and copper and between 10/100/1000 links and 10G.

Main Features of EX6-3

  • Filters and load balances traffic from 10 Gbps links to multiple 1 Gbps monitoring tools
  • Aggregates multiple 1 Gbps links to 10 Gbps monitoring tools
  • 48 x 10/100/1000 Base-X (SFP) ports
  • 4 x 10 Gbps (SFP+)
  • Supports traffic modifications up to layer 4 as well as changing, removing and adding VLAN and GRE tags/tunnels
  • Up to 3500 parallel rules
  • IPv6 support
  • 2-year warranty period

Functions & Benefits of EX6-3

  • Filtering and Load Balancing from L2 to L4
  • Easy to configure: Via Web GUI
  • GRE / VXLAN Tunnel support: The Packetmaster EX6-3,
    like all Packetmaster Series NPBs, can function as a GRE / VXLAN tunnel endpoint.
  • Session aware load balancing, up to 15 load balancing groups
  • Cubro Vitrum Management Suite: EX6-3 is fully compatible with Cubro Vitrum, a centralized management platform for all Cubro network visibility solutions.

Extended Functions

The management host controller of every Packetmaster EX unit runs a minimal Debian Linux OS as the operating system. This Linux OS natively supports core Unix shell commands and utilites, shell scripting, Python 2.7, and the VI text editor. This allows the user to create and run custom scripts and command sets to extend the functionality of the Packetmaster EX for their environment. Cubro can also create custom application for the customers specific needs as well.


  • A Python script reads files from a server and creates filters based on this changing data.
  • A Python script dynamically changes filters based on link load data collected from another Packetmaster
  • A shell script pings different devices and changes filter rules based on ping response.
Link/Port AggregationAggregation many to any, and any to many at all link speeds
10 Gbps traffic demultiplexerThe traffic can be easily demultiplexed into 48 lower speed Gbps ports to monitor highly loaded 10 Gbps links.
Jumbo Frame SupportThe Packetmaster supports jumbo Ethernet frames with a size of up to 12000 bytes
Support of IPv4 and IPv6Yes
Ports48 x SFP 1 Gbps 4 x SPF+ 10 Gbps 1 x 10/100/1000 Base-T (Management) 1 x RS232 Console
Configuration/ CommunicationWeb GUI, CLI via SSH or Telnet, REST API, SNMP, RADIUS
Bandwidth176 Gbps backplane 100 % throughput without any packet loss
Aggregation latencyAverage 1 µs for 64-byte frames
MTBF196.750 hours
Different Power Versions100- 230V AC dual power supply (DC power modules available)


  • 48 x 1 Gbps full duplex SFP Ports for any kind of SFP
  • 4 x 10 Gbps full duplex SFP+ Ports
  • Each port can be input and / or output depending on the application and configuration


  • 48 x 1 Gbps full duplex SFP Ports for any kind of SFP
  • 4 x 10 Gbps full duplex
  • SFP Ports for any kind of SFP/SFP+
  • Each port can be input or / and output depending on the application and configuration


  • Performance up to 176 Gbps
  • Non-blocking design
  • Estimated boot time up to 280 sec
  • Packet delay through processing less than 1 µs


  • RJ45 10/100 Mbps; ssh and/or Web
  • GUI
  • RS-232 Serial; CLI

Operating specifications

  • Operating Temperature: 0ºC to 45ºC
  • Storage Temperature: -10ºC to 70ºC
  • Relative Humidity: 10% min, 95% max (non-condensing)

Mechanical specifications

  • Dimension (W X D X H): 44 X 37 X 4.36 cm
  • Weight: 6,25 kg (Includes 2 Power Modules)
  • Airflow: Front-back
  • Quantity of Fans: 3
  • (NOT Hot swappable)

Electrical specifications

  • Input Power: 100-240V
  • Maximum Power Consumption: 170W


  • Fully RoHS compliant
  • CE compliant
  • Safety – UL 60950-1 / CSA C22.2 60950-1-07 / IEC 60950-1 (2005) EN 60950-1 (2006)


3500 flow rules (filters) can be set in the unit. The red dot marked fields can be used as a match for a packet, stand-alone, combined or with wild cards. For IP Src and IP Dst supernets are supported.

Available actions after a positive match include

  • Output: Forward the traffic to one or more ports (even the input port)
  • Drop: Drop (discard) the traffic
  • Modify: Modify header information such as VLAN tag, MPLS label, source MAC, destination MAC, source IP, destination IP, source Port, and destination Port.
  • Add VLAN tag: The Packetmaster EX units can add or append VLAN tags to the filtered traffic to separate or identify it after aggregation/output. (Up to six VLAN tags are possible).
  • Strip VLAN: Remove VLAN tag(s) (Q in Q support)
  • Rule Priority/Rule Stacking: The ability to prioritize filtering rules allows for very complex filtering possibilities.

Session Aware Load Balancing

The EX6-3 supports Session Aware Load balancing by means of selectable hash-criteria.
Thus, every packet that belongs to the same conversation/flow is sent to the same output port within a load-balancing group.

Product Components

  • EX6-3
  • AC, DC power modules available
  • Europe/US/UK power cords available
Part NumberDescription
CUB.PM-EX6-3Packetmaster EX6-3, 48x1G and 4x10G Network Packet Broker
CUB.PM-DC-DDC Power supply module for Cubro Packetmaster EX5-3 and EX6-3
CUB.RR19-1UUniversal Rackrail Kit for 1U 19″ units (Packet/Sessionmaster)

Spare parts

Part NumberDescription
CUB.PM-AC-DAC Power supply module for CUBRO Packetmaster EX5-3 and EX6-3
CUB.PM-DC-DDC Power supply module for CUBRO Packetmaster EX5-3 and EX6-3

Additional Resources

Cubro Packetmaster Port Configuration
using the Web GUI

Configuring GRE Tunnels on EX6-3

Cubro Packetmaster Split QSFP Interface
using the CLI

Rules and Filters Part 1: Basic Traffic Flows

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