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What's the default protocol when you set etherchannel mode to ON

Posted on 2008-10-13
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Last Modified: 2008-10-14
If you configure and etherchannel and set the mode to ON, for both sides what's the default protocol it uses? When I do a show etherchannel I just see a "-" for protocol.
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Question by:typertec
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Expert Comment

by:Pugglewuggle
ID: 22708602
There is no default protocol for etherchannel... etherchannel is etherchannel.
If you mean a dynamic routing protocol (probably what you're seeing) then that's just RIP or EIGRP, or something like that - if you don't use it that doesn't matter.
Cheers!
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Accepted Solution

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kyleb84 earned 200 total points
ID: 22710413
Etherchannel uses a Cisco proprietary protocol called PAGP (Port AGgregation Protocol).

The alternate is LACP - Link Aggregation Control Protocol (also called 802.3ad), this can be used also in newer switches/routers - and Cisco still calls it "EtherChannel" (It just uses LACP to do it).

LACP is a IEEE standard, and is regarded as the superior protocol, but I think Cisco still uses PAgP to add even more functionalilty to LACP (And retain backward compatibility).

To answer your question:

What Cisco will use by default is dependant on the type of switch and it's firmware version.
- According to the Cisco web site LACP features first started to appear in IOS Release 12.2(31)SB2
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Expert Comment

by:kyleb84
ID: 22710432
One way to tell I guess is in your logs it'll say either "PAGP-xxxx" entries or "LACP-xxxx" entries depending on which is being used.
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Assisted Solution

by:Pugglewuggle
Pugglewuggle earned 150 total points
ID: 22710464
That is right, as I said, etherchannel only operates on its protocol. Good bit of additional info though kyle! :)
Unless something else is specified, even new switches use the default etherchannel protocol (PAGP, as you say).
LACP is only used in conjuction with switches from other vendors that don't support Cisco etherchannel.
In other words - if both switches are Cisco then it doesn't matter.
Cheers!
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