Ethernet Switches & Routers

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Occasional Contributor
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎02-04-2013

Anyone know what an "uplink port" really is? (ICX6450)

Hi All --

 

I'm not exactly a rookie at this stuff, but every now and then I come across a hole in the tapestry (a dropped stitch?) , anyway , I'm setting up ESXi Host servers with a choice of VLANs for their VMs to be assigned to. On the ESXi side, I set up a vSwitch on a separate NIC, then set up port groups on the vSwitch set to specific VLANs. When a VM is built it is attached to the port group assigned to the VLAN the machine is to belong to. This works fine. On the switch side (ICX6450) I set the port the NIC is plugged into to be a tagged port and assign it to all defined VLANs. This also works just fine. So what's the problem? Well, while researching how to set this all up I came across the term "uplink port" but could find no clear definition as to what it is intended for, what capabilities and limitations it has or any examples of how to use it. Can I use uplink ports to make this ESXi setup more efficient, maybe easier to set up, maybe there are sharing or failover capabilities I could take advantage of? If I set the port to the ESXi host up to be an uplink port will I need to budget for an equivalent downlink port?

 

Thanks in advance!

Robert   

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 144
Registered: ‎11-07-2013

Re: Anyone know what an "uplink port" really is? (ICX6450)

Hi Robert,

   On the ICX range the uplink and downlink ports are the 4 x 1G or 1 by 10G ports used for stacking ICX devices together. This will not have anything to do with your ESXi setup.

 

Thanks

Michael.

Thanks
Michael
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎02-04-2013

Re: Anyone know what an "uplink port" really is? (ICX6450)

Hi Michael --

 

Thanks for the reply but I'm still in the weeds on this. Here's the section in the Fastiron documentation that set me off on this path:

(Fastiron Configuration Guide for v07.4.00, pg. 784)

 

"Configuring uplink ports within a port-based VLAN

 

You can configure a subset of the ports in a port-based VLAN as uplink ports. When you configure

uplink ports in a port-based VLAN, the device sends all broadcast and unknown-unicast traffic from

a port in the VLAN to the uplink ports, but not to other ports within the VLAN. Thus, the uplink ports

provide tighter broadcast control within the VLAN.

This uplink port feature behaves the same as the private VLAN (PVLAN) feature, but with the ability

to support tagged ports. This feature also supports two PVLAN modes: the Primary ports (uplink

ports) and Isolated ports (host ports).

For example, if two ports within a port-based VLAN are Gbps ports attached to the network and the

other ports are 10/100 ports attached to clients, you can configure the two ports attached to the

network as uplink ports. In this configuration, broadcast and unknown-unicast traffic in the VLAN

does not go to all ports. The traffic goes only to the uplink ports. The clients on the network do not

receive broadcast and unknown-unicast traffic from other ports, including other clients"

 

 

There's nothing restricting "uplink port" designation to the stacking ports. It says I can assign other ports as uplink ports, but the exmples and references to PVLAN similarities are confusing. Could you expand on this? I appreciate your attention --

 

Robert 

Brocadian
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎01-05-2012

Re: Anyone know what an "uplink port" really is? (ICX6450)

Hi Rober,

 

The term "uplink port" is used here loosely, as there is no such designation for ICX6450 as Uplink ports.

 

Any ports that is used to forward traffic to the L3 network can be seen as an "uplink" port(s).

 

In ICX6450, slot 1 are all 1 G ports, normally used to connect other switches/router, and network devices, slot 2 has 4 ports default to 10 G, with 1/2/1 and 1/2/3 enabled when shipped, and 1/2/2 and 1/2/4 ERR-DISA requiring POD license to function.

These four 4 GbE ports can be stacking ports or data ports.

When used as stacking ports you would inter-connect to other Hyperstack devices @ 10 GbE speed.

When used as data ports you may be connecting to uplink devices since it has the higher speed and better thru-put - may be that is what can leads some to consider them as "uplink ports".

 

The Uplink-switch feature was supported in 7.4.00x and as well in 8.0.00x

In the L2 Configuration Guide you cited for uplink ports, as quoted from 8.0.00x,  it give special way in handling vlan broadcast behavior.

Once configured, the normal BUM flooding is software forwarded. 

The device sends all broadcast and unknown-unicast traffic from a port in the VLAN to the uplink ports, but not to other ports within the VLAN. Thus, the "uplink ports" feature provides tighter broadcast control within the VLAN.

 

 

Hence, "uplink ports"  are used in different context.

 

Yes, you can use the 10 G ports for Data or any 1 G port  to connect to ESXi in singleton or LACP or LAG - even without using the uplink-switch sw feature.

 

 

Brocadian
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎01-05-2012

Re: Anyone know what an "uplink port" really is? (ICX6450)

Hi Robert,

Please also consult SLN1509, about the caveat with uplink-switch configured.

 

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