How To Configure IRF on HPE FF5700

Approaching a certain quality level of switching and routing, high availability evolves to be an obligation. In these terms, according to the different OSI service layers, there are many high availability protocols, securing the according network services. The Spanning Tree family as STP, RSTP, MSTP, PVST, protocols for link aggregation as LACP and layer three routing redundancy services like VRRP.

These protocols have the advantage, being vendor independent standards and presume to be interoperable. But either design gets complex, interoperability keeps its caveats or ressources are simply disabled and take over in failiure. Thats not exactly performance driving.

So vendors created stacks – which failed otherwise, or they started to create systems of higher complexity which proprietary created load sharing high availability clusters in the Continue reading

How-To: Init HPE FF5700 FlexFabric Switches

Left alone by some consultants, which charged a lot and did not accomplish to much, I ended up configuring FF5700 felx fabric switches myself. Some of the insights, other posts will follow.

To start with the basic initialization settings, configuring management access and doing initial firmware maintenance. After unpacking the switch and mounting fans and power supplies connect through the serial console – although there is dhcp client running on the switch which probably allows you to gain management access over the network. Remember there is a Gigabit- Ethernet- Port on the backside of the switch, dedicated for management access only. The console port is adjacent. Default serial settings are 9600/n/1/n as with any other HPE switch.

After the boot procedure press enter and you have access to the switch. Elevate your access level to configuration mode with:

system-view

To start with I actually disable the DHCP client and activate LLDP for further use.

undo dhcp enable
lldp global enable

After that prepare the desired VLANs according to whatever you later use. I strictly recommend leaving the default VLAN untouched, leaving the Primary VLAN ID on 1 and transport that untagged on any switch to switch link, but remove all access and server Continue reading

VMWare standard vSwitches and CDP/LLDP

Wie richtet man CDP/LLDP auf standard vSwitches ein? Aus distributed vSwitches hinreichend aktueller ESX Installationen ist der LLDP Haken in der Konfiguration schnell gesetzt und man erhält eine Layer 2 Plausibilisierung quasi auf Knopfdruck.

Kürzlich wollte ich genau diese Funktionalität auch auf standard vSwitches nutzen und stellte ziemlich unglücklich fest, dass hier keine solche Checkbox zu finden war. Weder im Switch- noch im Interface- Kontext. Allerdings findet sich im Netz die ein oder andere Variante und zumindest seit ESXi 4.x sollte CDP auch auf standard vSwitches möglich sein.

Dazu muss man sich jedoch per SSH auf dem zu konfigurierenden ESX Host anmelden,  Continue reading