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Cisco shocker: Some network switches may ELECTROCUTE you

Buzz, buzz: RTFM, people

Oh dear: Cisco is warning that screws in a couple of its compact Catalyst switches may be poking into wires carrying live voltages.

In this field note, the Borg says the problem occurs when WS-C3560CX or WS-C2960CX switches are installed without a mounting tray – for example, screwed to a desk, shelf, or wall.

Screws not installed to the correct depth, “coupled with appreciable force in order to mount the switch, might cause the insulator to be punctured, which exposes a voltage circuit,” the note states.

How can you tell if the switch was installed correctly? Cisco helpfully notes that one good test is “the switch currently works.”

That's because the screws are earthed to the case. If you're installing the switch and over-tightening the screws with power turned on, the screw might touch the voltage circuit which “might result in an electrical shock for a very short time period before the unit fails.”

Cisco notes that if you want to avoid zapping yourself and destroying the switch, you should either use a mounting tray, or at the very least, pay attention to the installation instructions.

The full list of products is WS-C2960CX-8PC-L, WS-C2960CX-8TC-L, WS-C3560CX-12PC-S, WS-C3560CX-12PD-S, WS-C3560CX-12TC-S, WS-C3560CX-8PC-S, and WS-C3560CX-8TC-S. ®

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