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Best Practice: Connecting bonded Linux interfaces to a pair of Cisco 2960G

Posted on 2009-04-07
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Hiya,

I'm a linux SA (not much network knowledge). I've been rolling out Openfiler SANs (think linux), with a pair of bonded GigE interfaces on our LAN. They are on a seperate VLAN.

We have a pair of Catalyst 2960G that we wil be using to put these on the network. What are my options?

1) Is there a way to spread the two bonded SAN interfaces across the switches, and if so, what are the steps? I'm willing to interconnect the two switches however is necessary, and am willing to use any bonding mode on the linux side save for maybe mode 1 (active-backup), although I would consider that if it were the only option.

2) If not, and I have to put both interfaces on the same switch, what the best way to do that? Which bonding mode would work best, and what are the setup steps?

Right now each pair is bonded round-robin, and is attached to a single switch. Things are running, but I didn't do anything special bonding-wise on the switch and I suspect I'm giving the switch a headache.

Thanks for any help.    
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Question by:doglikegroove
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by:Nopius
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> What are my options?

> 2) If not, and I have to put both interfaces on the same switch, what the best way to do that? Which bonding mode would work best, and what are the setup steps?

Here is only my guess, doesn't tested... You may use Linux bonding mode=4 (802.3ad), the same aggregation mode can be configured on Cisco:
http://www.linuxhorizon.ro/bonding.html
http://www.cisco.com/en/US/tech/tk389/tk213/technologies_configuration_example09186a0080094470.shtml

This link may or may not be helpful... http://www.linuxjournal.com/article/7268
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> We have a pair of Catalyst 2960G that we wil be using to put these on the network. What are my options?

AFAIK Catalysts 29xx can't be stacked, so you might try other bonding modes, not 802.3ad (which is good when we are connected to the same switch).
Also when you have 2 switches and spanning tree protocol enabled, you  only one path to your Openfiled appliance will be used, so you get may your 'active-standby' alternative.

Again, you should test the configuration.
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Here they say that you may use cisco only with stacked modules (say 6xxx can be used)
http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-1035-0.html?forumID=101&threadID=270937&messageID=2564103
and some more links to this technology: http://search.techrepublic.com.com/search/cisco+etherchannel+technology.html
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by:doglikegroove
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I wasn't able to get this working across two switches.

As for the bonding type, 802.3ad works really well with Cisco and Linux.
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