Fibre Channel (SAN)

New Contributor
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎12-19-2016

What happens when both hard and soft zone in same switch config

What happens when both hard and soft zone in same switch config for same initiator and target?


Can we see dead paths on the server or will there be any distruptive on communication between these devices

Brocade Moderator
Posts: 185
Registered: ‎03-29-2011

Re: What happens when both hard and soft zone in same switch config



If you have only WWPN member in a zone, it is hardware enforced on the frame level (and no overlap with other zones).

If you have only Domain, Port-Index (D,I) members in a zone, it hardware enforced on the frame lvel (and no overlap with other zones).


If a zone have a mixture of WWPN and (D,I) members, then it will be Session based in hardware.

If a zone is in several zones, and is defined by WWN in one zone and by D,I in another, then session based hardware enforcement is in effect - reference at


I suspect from what you write, that the port will be in Session based zone - you can check by the portzoneshow CLI.  And thus


  • Session-based hardware enforcement: The only frames checked by hardware are the ELS frames
    (such as PLOGI and RNID) used to establish a session.

There will be no difference for visibility of devices comparing frame vs session based zoning.


As usual, there will RSCNs when zoning is put in place and the server will need to login into the name server, and

if necessary run PLOGI (or PDISC, ADISC) to the target(s) again.


kind regards

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