Updated Cisco has issued a warning that an electronic component used in versions of its routing, optical networking, security and switch products prior to November 16, 2016 is unreliable – and may fail in the next year and a half, rendering affected hardware permanently inoperable.
"Although the Cisco products with this component are currently performing normally, we expect product failures to increase over the years, beginning after the unit has been in operation for approximately 18 months," Cisco said in its advisory.
"Once the component has failed, the system will stop functioning, will not boot, and is not recoverable."
And without naming names, Cisco said that the clock-signal-generating component is also used by other companies. Expect further notices of this sort from other vendors shortly.
Cisco said it learned about the issue in late November and has worked with the component supplier to fix the faulty part. As a result, currently shipping products are not affected.
For customers with affected products under warranty or covered by service contracts through November 16, 2016, Cisco intends to provide replacement products. It is prioritizing replacements for those who have been operating the affected products the longest, because of the correlation between operation time and component failure.