Layer 2
Network Design
Layer-2 Network Design
  A good network design is modular and
hierarchical, with a clear separation of
functions:
  Core: Resilient, few changes, few features, high
bandwidth, CPU power
  Distribution: Aggregation, redundancy
  Access: Port density, affordability, security
features, many adds, moves and changes
Layer-2 Network Design - Simple
ISP
1
Network Border
Core
Distribution
Access
Layer-2 Network Design - Redundant
ISP
1
ISP
2
Network Border
Core
Distribution
Access
In-Building and Layer 2
  There is usually a correspondence between
building separation and subnet separation
  Switching inside a building
  Routing between buildings
  This will depend on the size of the network
  Very small networks can get by with doing
switching between buildings
  Very large networks might need to do routing
inside buildings
Layer 2 Concepts
  Layer 2 protocols basically control access to a
shared medium (copper, fiber, electromagnetic waves)
  Ethernet is the de-facto wired-standard today
  Reasons:
  Simple
  Cheap
  Manufacturers keep making it faster
  Wireless (802.11a,b,g,n) is also Layer-2
technology.
Ethernet Functions
  Source and Destination identification
  MAC addresses
  Detect and avoid frame collisions
  Listen and wait for channel to be available
  If collision occurs, wait a random period before
retrying
  This is called CASMA-CD: Carrier Sense Multiple Access
with Collision Detection
Ethernet Frame
  SFD = Start of Frame Delimiter
  DA = Destination Address
  SA = Source Address
  CRC = Cyclick Redundancy Check
Evolution of Ethernet Topologies
  Bus
  Everybody on the same coaxial cable
  Star
  One central device connects every other node
  First with hubs (repeated traffic)
  Later with switches (bridged traffic)
  Structured cabling for star topologies standardized
Switched Star Topology Benefits
  It’s modular:
  Independent wires for each end node
  Independent traffic in each wire
  A second layer of switches can be added to build a
hierarchical network that extends the same two
benefits above
  ALWAYS DESIGN WITH MODULARITY IN MIND
Hub
  Receives a frame on one port and sends it out
every other port, always.
  Collision domain is not reduced
  Traffic ends up in places where it’s not needed
Hub
Hub
A frame sent by one node is always sent to
every other node. Hubs are also called
“repeaters” because they just “repeat” what
they hear.
Switch
  Learns the location of each node by looking
at the source address of each incoming frame,
and builds a forwarding table
  Forwards each incoming frame to the port
where the destination node is
  Reduces the collision domain
  Makes more efficient use of the wire
  Nodes don’t waste time checking frames not destined to
them
Switch
Forwarding Table
Address
Port
AAAAAAAAAAAA
1
BBBBBBBBBBBB
5
Switch
A
B
Switches and Broadcast
  A switch broadcasts some frames:
  When the destination address is not found in the
table
  When the frame is destined to the broadcast
address (FF:FF:FF:FF:FF:FF)
  When the frame is destined to a multicast ethernet
address
  So, switches do not reduce the broadcast
domain!
Switch vs. Router
  Routers more or less do with IP packets what
switches do with Ethernet frames
  A router looks at the IP packet destination and
checks its routing table to decide where to
forward the packet
  Some differences:
  IP packets travel inside ethernet frames
  IP networks can be logically segmented into
subnets
  Switches do not usually know about IP, they only
deal with Ethernet frames
Switch vs. Router
  Routers do not forward Ethernet broadcasts.
  Switches reduce the collision domain
  Routers reduce the broadcast domain
  This becomes really important when trying to
design hierarchical, scalable networks that can
grow sustainably
S
R
S
Traffic Domains
Router
Switch
Hub
Switch
Hub
Broadcast Domain
Hub
Hub
Collision Domain
Traffic Domains
  Try to eliminate collision domains
  Get rid of hubs!
  Actually hubs are very rare today.
  Try to keep your broadcast domain limited to
no more than 250 simultaneously connected
hosts
  Segment your network using routers
Layer 2 Network Design Guidelines
  Always connect hierarchically
  If there are multiple switches in a building, use an
aggregation switch
  Locate the aggregation switch close to the building
entry point (e.g. fiber panel)
  Locate edge switches close to users (e.g. one per
floor)
  Max length for Cat 5 is 100 meters
Minimize Path Between Elements
✗
✔
Build Incrementally
  Start small
Fiber link to distribution switch
Switch
Hosts
Build Incrementally
  As you have demand and money, grow like
this:
Aggreg.
Switch
Hosts
Build Incrementally
  And keep growing within the same hierarchy:
Aggreg.
Switch
Switch
Hosts
Hosts
Build Incrementally
  At this point, you can also add a redundant
aggregation switch:
Aggreg.
Aggreg.
Switch
Switch
Hosts
Do not daisy-chain
  Resist the temptation of doing this:
✗
Connect buildings hierarchically
✔
Virtual LANs (VLANs)
  Allow us to split switches into separate
(virtual) switches
  Only members of a VLAN can see that VLAN’s
traffic
  Inter-vlan traffic must go through a router
VLAN introduction
  VLANs provide segmentation based on broadcast domains.
  VLANs logically segment switched networks based on the functions,
project teams, or applications of the organization regardless of the
physical location or connections to the network.
  All workstations and servers used by a particular workgroup share the
same VLAN, regardless of the physical connection or location.
Local VLANs
  2 VLANs or more within a single switch
  VLANs address scalability, security, and network
management. Routers in VLAN topologies provide
broadcast filtering, security, and traffic flow management.
  Edge ports, where end nodes are connected, are
configured as members of a VLAN
  The switch behaves as several virtual switches, sending
traffic only within VLAN members.
  Switches may not bridge any traffic between VLANs, as
this would violate the integrity of the VLAN broadcast
domain.
  Traffic should only be routed between VLANs.
Local VLANs
Switch
VLAN X VLAN Y
Edge ports
VLAN X nodes
VLAN Y nodes
Broadcast domains with VLANs and
routers
10.1.0.0/16
10.2.0.0/16
Without VLANs:
10.3.0.0/16
  Without VLANs, each group is on a
different IP network and on a different
switch.
One link per VLAN or a single VLAN
Trunk (later)
With
  Using VLANs. Switch is configured with
the ports on the appropriate VLAN. Still, VLANs
each group on a different IP network;
however, they are all on the same
switch.
  What are the broadcast domains in each?
10.1.0.0/16
10.2.0.0/16
10.3.0.0/16
VLANs
Two VLANs = Two subnets
Important notes on VLANs:
  VLANs are assigned to switch ports. There is no “VLAN”
assignment done on the host (usually).
  In order for a host to be a part of that VLAN, it must be
assigned an IP address that belongs to the proper subnet.
Remember: VLAN = Subnet
VLANs
ARP Request
Two VLANs = Two subnets
  VLANs separate broadcast domains!
e.g. without VLAN the ARP would be seen on all subnets.
  Assigning a host to the correct VLAN is a 2-step process:
  Connect the host to the correct port on the switch.
  Assign to the host the correct IP address depending on
the VLAN membership
VLAN operation
  As a device enters the network, it
automatically assumes the VLAN membership
of the port to which it is attached.
  The default VLAN for every port in the switch
is VLAN 1 and cannot be deleted.
(This statement does not give the whole story. More in the
lab later for interested groups…)
  All other ports on the switch may be
reassigned to alternate VLANs.
VLANs across switches
  Two switches can exchange traffic from one or
more VLANs
  Inter-switch links are configured as trunks,
carrying frames from all or a subset of a
switch’s VLANs
  Each frame carries a tag that identifies which
VLAN it belongs to
VLANs across switches
No VLAN Tagging
VLAN Tagging
  VLAN tagging is used when a single link needs
to carry traffic for more than one VLAN.
VLANs across switches
Tagged Frames
802.1Q Trunk
Trunk Port
VLAN X
VLAN Y
VLAN X
Edge Ports
This is called “VLAN Trunking”
VLAN Y
802.1Q
  The IEEE standard that defines how ethernet
frames should be tagged when moving across
switch trunks
  This means that switches from different
vendors are able to exchange VLAN traffic.
802.1Q tagged frame
Tagged vs. Untagged
  Edge ports are not tagged, they are just
“members” of a VLAN
  You only need to tag frames in switch-toswitch links (trunks), when transporting
multiple VLANs
  A trunk can transport both tagged and
untagged VLANs
  As long as the two switches agree on how to handle
those
VLANS increase complexity
  You can no longer “just replace” a switch
  Now you have VLAN configuration to maintain
  Field technicians need more skills
  You have to make sure that all the switch-toswitch trunks are carrying all the necessary
VLANs
  Need to keep in mind when adding/removing
VLANs
Good reasons to use VLANs
  You want to segment your network into
multiple subnets, but can’t buy enough
switches
  Hide sensitive infrastructure like IP phones,
building controls, etc.
  Separate control traffic from user traffic
  Restrict who can access your switch management
address
Bad reasons to use VLANs
  Because you can, and you feel cool 
  Because they will completely secure your
hosts (or so you think)
  Because they allow you to extend the same IP
network over multiple separate buildings
Do not build “VLAN spaghetti”
  Extending a VLAN to multiple buildings across
trunk ports
  Bad idea because:
  Broadcast traffic is carried across all trunks from
one end of the network to another
  Broadcast storm can spread across the extent of
the VLAN
  Maintenance and troubleshooting nightmare
Configuring static VLANs
  VLAN 1 is one of the factory-default VLANs.
  Configure VLANs:
Switch#conf t
Switch(config)#interface vlan 10
Switch(config-if)#ip address x.x.x.x m.m.m.m
Creating VLANs
Default
vlan 1
vlan
10
Default
vlan 1
  Create the VLAN:
Switch#vlan database
Switch(vlan)#vlan vlan_number
Switch(vlan)#exit
  Assign ports to the VLAN (in configuration mode):
Switch(config)#interface fastethernet 0/9
Switch(config-if)#switchport access vlan 10
  access – Denotes this port as an access port and not a trunk
Verifying VLANs – show vlan-switch
vlan 1
default
vlan 2
show vlan-switch
vlan 3
show vlan-switch brief
vlan 1
default
vlan 2
show vlan-switch brief
vlan 3
vlan database commands
  Optional Command to add, delete, or modify VLANs.
  VLAN names, numbers, and VTP (VLAN Trunking Protocol)
information can be entered which “may” affect other switches
besides this one. (Not part of this module)
  This does not assign any VLANs to an interface.
Switch#vlan database
Switch(vlan)#?
VLAN database editing buffer manipulation commands:
abort
Exit mode without applying the changes
apply
Apply current changes and bump revision number
exit
Apply changes, bump revision number, and exit mode
no
Negate a command or set its defaults
reset
Abandon current changes and reread current database
show
Show database information
vlan
vtp
Add, delete, or modify values associated with a single VLAN
Perform VTP administrative functions.
VLAN trunking
  To configure 802.1q trunking switch/router, first
determine which ports on the switches will be
used to connect the two switches together.
  Then in the Global configuration mode
enter the following commands on both switches:
Switch_A(config)#interface fastethernet interface ifnumber
Switch_A(config-if)#switchport trunk
encapsulation dot1q
Deleting a Port VLAN Membership
Switch(config-if)#no switchport access vlan vlan_number
Deleting a VLAN
Switch#vlan database
Switch(vlan)#no vlan vlan_number
Switch(vlan)#exit
Link Aggregation
Link Aggregation
  Also known as port bundling, link bundling
  You can use multiple links in parallel as a
single, logical link
  For increased capacity
  For redundancy (fault tolerance)
  LACP (Link Aggregation Control Protocol) is a
standardized method of negotiating these
bundled links between switches
LACP Operation
  Two switches connected via multiple links will
send LACPDU packets, identifying themselves
and the port capabilities
  They will then automatically build the logical
aggregated links, and then pass traffic.
  Switch ports can be configured as active or
passive
LACP Operation
100 Mbps
Switch A
Switch B
100 Mbps
LACPDUs
  Switches A and B are connected to each other
using two sets of Fast Ethernet ports
  LACP is enabled and the ports are turned on
  Switches start sending LACPDUs, then
negotiate how to set up the aggregation
LACP Operation
100 Mbps
Switch A
Switch B
100 Mbps
200 Mbps logical link
  The result is an aggregated 200 Mbps logical link
  The link is also fault tolerant: If one of the
member links fail, LACP will automatically take
that link off the bundle, and keep sending traffic
over the remaining link
Distributing Traffic in Bundled Links
  Bundled links distribute frames using a
hashing algorithm, based on:
  Source and/or Destination MAC address
  Source and/or Destination IP address
  Source and/or Destination Port numbers
  This can lead to unbalanced use of the links,
depending on the nature of the traffic
  Always choose the load-balancing method that
provides the most distribution
Switching Loops
Switching Loop
Switch A
Switch B
Swtich C
  When there is
more than one
path between
two switches
  What are the
potential
problems?
Switching Loop
  If there is more than one path between two
switches:
  Forwarding tables become unstable
  Source MAC addresses are repeatedly seen coming from
different ports
  Switches will broadcast each other’s broadcasts
  All available bandwidth is utilized
  Switch processors cannot handle the load
Switching Loop
Switch A
Switch B
Swtich C
Node 1
Node1 sends a
broadcast frame
(e.g. an ARP request)
Switching Loop
Switch A
Switch B
Swtich C
Node 1
Switches A, B and
C broadcast node
1’s frame out
every port
Switching Loop
Switch A
Switch B
Swtich C
Node 1
But they receive
each other’s
broadcasts, which
they need to
forward again out
every port!
The broadcasts are
amplified, creating
a broadcast
storm…
Good Switching Loops???
  But you can take advantage of loops!
  Redundant paths improve resilience when:
  A switch fails
  Wiring breaks
  How to achieve redundancy without creating
dangerous traffic loops?
What is a Spanning Tree
  “Given a connected,
undirected graph, a
spanning tree of that
graph is a subgraph
which is a tree and
connects all the vertices
together”.
  A single graph can have
many different spanning
trees.
Spanning Tree Protocol
  The purpose of the protocol is to have bridges
dynamically discover a subset of the topology
that is loop-free (a tree) and yet has just
enough connectivity so that where physically
possible, there is a path between every switch
Spanning Tree Protocol
  Several flavors:
  Traditional Spanning Tree (802.1d)
  Rapid Spanning Tree or RSTP (802.1w)
  Multiple Spanning Tree or MSTP (802.1s)
Traditional Spanning Tree (802.1d)
  Switches exchange messages that allow them
to compute the Spanning Tree
  These messages are called BPDUs (Bridge Protocol
Data Units)
  Two types of BPDUs:
  Configuration
  Topology Change Notification (TCN)
Traditional Spanning Tree (802.1d)
  First Step:
  Decide on a point of reference: the Root Bridge
  The election process is based on the Bridge ID,
which is composed of:
  The Bridge Priority: A two-byte value that is configurable
  The MAC address: A unique, hardcoded address that
cannot be changed.
Root Bridge Selection (802.1d)
  Each switch starts by sending out BPDUs with
a Root Bridge ID equal to its own Bridge ID
  I am the root!
  Received BPDUs are analyzed to see if a lower
Root Bridge ID is being announced
  If so, each switch replaces the value of the
advertised Root Bridge ID with this new lower ID
  Eventually, they all agree on who the Root
Bridge is
Root Bridge Selection (802.1d)
32678.0000000000AA
Switch A
Switch B
32678.0000000000BB
Switch C
32678.0000000000CC
  All switches have the same priority.
  Who is the elected root bridge?
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
  Now each switch needs to figure out where it
is in relation to the Root Bridge
  Each switch needs to determine its Root Port
  The key is to find the port with the lowest Root
Path Cost
  The cumulative cost of all the links leading to the Root
Bridge
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
  Each link on a switch has a Path Cost
  Inversely proportional to the link speed
e.g. the faster the link, the lower the cost
Link Speed
STP Cost
10 Mbps
100
100 Mbps
19
1 Gbps
4
10 Gbps
2
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
  Root Path Cost is the accumulation of a
link’s Path Cost and the Path Costs learned
from neighboring Switches.
  It answers the question: How much does it cost to
reach the Root Bridge through this port?
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
1.  Root Bridge sends out BPDUs with a Root
Path Cost value of 0
2.  Neighbor receives BPDU and adds port’s Path
Cost to Root Path Cost received
3.  Neighbor sends out BPDUs with new
cumulative value as Root Path Cost
4.  Other neighbor’s down the line keep adding
in the same fashion
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
  On each switch, the port where the lowest
Root Path Cost was received becomes the
Root Port
  This is the port with the best path to the Root
Bridge
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
32678.0000000000AA
1 Switch A 2
Cost=19
Cost=19
1
1
Switch B 2 Cost=19 2 Switch C
32678.0000000000BB
32678.0000000000CC
  What is the Path Cost on each Port?
  What is the Root Port on each switch?
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
32678.0000000000AA
1 Switch A 2
Root
Port
Cost=19
Cost=19
1
1
Switch B 2 Cost=19 2 Switch C
32678.0000000000BB
Root
Port
32678.0000000000CC
Electing Designated Ports (802.1d)
  OK, we now have selected root ports but we
haven’t solved the loop problem yet, have we?
The links are still active!
  Each network segment needs to have only one
switch forwarding traffic to and from that
segment
  Switches then need to identify one
Designated Port per link
  The one with the lowest cumulative Root Path Cost
to the Root Bridge
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
32678.0000000000AA
1 Switch A 2
Cost=19
Cost=19
1
1
Switch B 2 Cost=19 2 Switch C
32678.0000000000BB
32678.0000000000CC
Which port should be the Designated Port on
each segment?
Electing Designated Ports (802.1d)
  Two or more ports in a segment having
identical Root Path Costs is possible, which
results in a tie condition
  All STP decisions are based on the following
sequence of conditions:
  Lowest Root Bridge ID
  Lowest Root Path Cost to Root Bridge
  Lowest Sender Bridge ID
  Lowest Sender Port ID
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
Designated
Port
32678.0000000000AA
1 Switch A 2
Cost=19
Designated
Port
Cost=19
1
1
Switch B 2 Cost=19 2 Switch C
32678.0000000000BB
Designated
Port
32678.0000000000CC
In the B-C link, Switch B
has the lowest Bridge ID,
so port 2 in Switch B is
the Designated Port
Blocking a port
  Any port that is not elected as either a Root
Port, nor a Designated Port is put into the
Blocking State.
  This step effectively breaks the loop and
completes the Spanning Tree.
Root Port Selection (802.1d)
32678.0000000000AA
1 Switch A 2
Cost=19
Cost=19
1
1
Switch B 2 Cost=19 2 Switch C
32678.0000000000BB
✗
32678.0000000000CC
Port 2 in Switch C is put into the Blocking
State, because it is neither a Root Port nor
a Designated Port
Spanning Tree Protocol States
  Disabled
  Port is shut down
  Blocking
  Not forwarding frames
  Receiving BPDUs
  Listening
  Not forwarding frames
  Sending and receiving BPDUs
Spanning Tree Protocol States
  Learning
  Not forwarding frames
  Sending and receiving BPDUs
  Learning new MAC addresses
  Forwarding
  Forwarding frames
  Sending and receiving BPDUs
  Learning new MAC addresses
STP Topology Changes
  Switches will recalculate if:
  A new switch is introduced
  It could be the new Root Bridge!
  A switch fails
  A link fails
Root Bridge Placement
  Using default STP parameters might result in
an undesired situation
  Traffic will flow in non-optimal ways
  An unstable or slow switch might become the root
  You need to plan your assignment of bridge
priorities carefully
Bad Root Bridge Placement
Out to router
32678.0000000000DD
Swtich D
Switch B
32678.0000000000BB
Root
Bridge
32678.0000000000CC
Switch C
Switch A
32678.0000000000AA
Good Root Bridge Placement
Alternative
Root Bridge
1.0000000000DD
Out to standby
router
Swtich D
32678.0000000000CC
Switch C
Out to active
router
Root
Bridge
Switch B
Switch A
0.0000000000BB
32678.0000000000AA
Protecting the STP Topology
  Some vendors have included features that
protect the STP topology:
  Root Guard
  BPDU Guard
  Loop Guard
  UDLD
  Etc.
STP Design Guidelines
  Enable spanning tree even if you don’t have
redundant paths
  Always plan and set bridge priorities
  Make the root choice deterministic
  Include an alternative root bridge
  If possible, do not accept BPDUs on end user
ports
802.1d Convergence Speeds
  Moving from the Blocking state to the Forwarding
State takes at least 2 x Forward Delay time units
(~ 30 secs.)
  This can be annoying when connecting end user stations
  Some vendors have added enhancements such as
PortFast, which will reduce this time to a minimum for
edge ports
  Never use PortFast or similar in switch-to-switch links
  Topology changes typically take 30 seconds
too
  This can be unacceptable in a production network
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
  Convergence is much faster
  Communication between switches is more
interactive
  Edge ports don’t participate
  Edge ports transition to forwarding state
immediately
  If BPDUs are received on an edge port, it becomes
a non-edge port to prevent loops
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
  Defines these port roles:
  Root Port (same as with 802.1d)
  Alternate Port
  A port with an alternate path to the root
  Designated Port (same as with 802.1d)
  Backup Port
  A backup/redundant path to a segment where another
bridge port already connects.
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
  Synchronization process uses a handshake
method
  After a root is elected, the topology is built in
cascade, where each switch proposes to be the
designated bridge for each point-to-point link
  While this happens, all the downstream switch links
are blocking
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
Proposal
RP
DP
Root
Agreement
Switch
Switch
Switch
Switch
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
DP
RP
Root
DP
Proposal
RP
Agreement
Switch
Switch
Switch
Switch
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
DP
Root
DP
RP
RP
Switch
Switch
DP
Proposal
RP
Agreement
Switch
Switch
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
DP
Root
DP
RP
RP
Switch
Switch
DP
DP
Proposal
RP
Switch
Agreement
Switch
RP
Rapid Spanning Tree (802.1w)
  Prefer RSTP over STP if you want faster
convergence
  Always define which ports are edge ports
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
  Allows separate spanning trees per VLAN
group
  Different topologies allow for load balancing
between links
  Each group of VLANs are assigned to an “instance”
of MST
  Compatible with STP and RSTP
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
Root VLAN A
Vlan A
Root VLAN B
Vlan B
✕
✕
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
  MST Region
  Switches are members of a region if they have the
same set of attributes:
  MST configuration name
  MST configuration revision
  Instance-to-VLAN mapping
  A digest of these attributes is sent inside the
BPDUs for fast comparison by the switches
  One region is usually sufficient
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
  CST = Common Spanning Tree
  In order to interoperate with other versions of
Spanning Tree, MST needs a common tree that
contains all the other islands, including other MST
regions
  IST = Internal Spanning Tree
  Internal to the Region, that is
  Presents the entire region as a single virtual bridge
to the CST outside
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
  MST Instances
  Groups of VLANs are mapped to particular
Spanning Tree instances
  These instances will represent the alternative
topologies, or forwarding paths
  You specify a root and alternate root for each
instance
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
CST
MST Region
MST Region
IST
IST
802.1D switch
Multiple Spanning Tree (802.1s)
  Design Guidelines
  Determine relevant forwarding paths, and
distribute your VLANs equally into instances
matching these topologies
  Assign different root and alternate root switches to
each instance
  Make sure all switches match region attributes
  Do not assign VLANs to instance 0, as this is used
by the IST
Selecting Switches
  Minimum features:
  Standards compliance
  Encrypted management (SSH/HTTPS)
  VLAN trunking
  Spanning Tree (RSTP at least)
  SNMP
  At least v2 (v3 has better security)
  Traps
Selecting Switches
  Other recommended features:
  DHCP Snooping
  Prevent end-users from running a rogue DHCP server
  Happens a lot with little wireless routers (Netgear, Linksys,
etc) plugged in backwards
  Uplink ports towards the legitimate DHCP server are
defined as “trusted”. If DHCPOFFERs are seen coming
from any untrusted port, they are dropped.
Selecting Switches
  Other recommended features:
  Dynamic ARP inspection
  A malicious host can perform a man-in-the-middle attack
by sending gratuitous ARP responses, or responding to
requests with bogus information
  Switches can look inside ARP packets and discard
gratuitous and invalid ARP packets.
Selecting Switches
  Other recommended features:
  IGMP Snooping:
  Switches normally flood multicast frames out every port
  Snooping on IGMP traffic, the switch can learn which
stations are members of a multicast group, thus
forwarding multicast frames only out necessary ports
  Very important when users run Norton Ghost, for example.
Network Management
  Enable SNMP traps and/or syslog
  Collect and process in centralized log server
  Spanning Tree Changes
  Duplex mismatches
  Wiring problems
  Monitor configurations
  Use RANCID to report any changes in the switch
configuration
Network Management
  Collect forwarding tables with SNMP
  Allows you to find a MAC address in your network
quickly
  You can use simple text files + grep, or a web tool
with DB backend
  Enable LLDP (or CDP or similar)
  Shows how switches are connected to each other
and to other network devices
Documentation
  Document where your switches are located
  Name switch after building name
  E.g. building1-sw1
  Keep files with physical location
  Floor, closet number, etc.
  Document your edge port connections
  Room number, jack number, server name
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