re: Practical Analysis: IT Pros Don't See Cisco's Claimed TCO Advantage
The problem is that Cisco believes that the IOS is macho and the only way to configure networks. Sure a command line interface is useful and faster if you already know it. Cisco's argument is that the IOS runs faster because there is less overhead. That's a reasonable assumption, but why can't you have a application that loads a config file onto the switch or router. It's important to understand the underlying technology, but it should not necessarily mean you need to use the IOS all the time.
Cisco's network management products are poor and jumble of disparate products. Cisco's idea of network management is a creaky application called Ciscoworks that has memory leaks and crashes often. 3com had a network management product that you could visually configure diff-serv almost 15 years before Cisco finally got around to implement it. It is only by market dominance that Cisco has able to force their customers to use the IOS.