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Unlike acceptable Catalyst switches alive IOS, Nexus switches run NX-OS. There are some affinity amid IOS and NX-OS. Additionally there are new appearance and commands alien in NX-OS.

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In commendations of CLI commands, there are several new commands on Nexus NX-OS image. There are additionally old commands you acquisition on approved IOS image, and there are adapted command compared to the approved IOS. Legacy command such as abode anamnesis is not accurate anymore, accordingly you accept to get acclimated to the archetype running-config startup-config command.

A nice affection in Nexus about-face is that you don’t accept to avenue agreement access to blazon in any non-configuration commands. You don’t blazon in the do command aback you are on agreement access to blazon in any non-configuration commands. You artlessly blazon in the non-configuration commands anon whether you are on approved accredit access or agreement mode, agnate to PIX Firewall or ASA.

All about-face ports in Nexus switches alone abutment 1 Gbps and 10 Gbps speed. Interestingly, these gigabit ports do not appearance as GigabitEthernet ports or TenGigabitEthernet ports on about-face configurations. Instead the ports appearance as Ethernet interfaces. To acquisition out which acceleration the ports are acting current, you can artlessly affair the acceptable old appearance interface cachet or artlessly appearance interface command.

Along with new commands and features, there are several new abstraction and technology in place. One new technology begin in Nexus about-face is FEX (Fabric Extender). About you use this FEX technology aback you accept Nexus 2000 and Nexus 5000 interconnectivity.

This FEX technology is agnate to the Catalyst 3750 stacking technology area about-face agreement aural the aforementioned “stack” is arresting through aloof one switch. Agnate to Catalyst 3750 assemblage about-face configuration, the Nexus 5000 shows as the “module 1” and the Nexus 2000 shows as the “module 2”.

Unlike Catalyst 3750 assemblage switch, the Nexus do not use assemblage cable. The about-face anchorage to interconnect the two Nexus switches are SFP slot. In adjustment to interconnect the two Nexus switches, the about-face ports are configured as FEX ports instead of approved block or admission ports.

To alpha application this FEX feature, you accept to actuate FEX on the Nexus 5000. As you will see, you accept to actuate telnet and tacacs should your arrangement charge to use those as well. In added words, there are some appearance that you accept to alive aback you plan to use the appearance as allotment of your Nexus about-face arrangement topology.

Further, you accept to ascertain how the Nexus 2000 anchorage cardinal should attending like. If let’s say you configure the FEX anchorage as FEX 101, again all Nexus 2000 about-face anchorage will appearance as interface Ethernet 101 (the “module 2”) while the Nexus 5000 about-face anchorage appearance as the approved interface Ethernet 1 (the “module 1”).

Note that there is no animate anchorage on Nexus 2000. There is animate anchorage about on Nexus 5000. Accordingly you charge to use the FEX technology to interconnect Nexus 2000 and Nexus 5000 in adjustment to accept animate admission to Nexus 2000.

When you charge to use the administration anchorage on the Nexus 5000 (and additionally Supervisor 6E of Catalyst 4500 series), accomplish abiding you accept at atomic some acquaintance with VRF (VPN Acquisition and Forwarding) technology aback these administration ports are application involving VRF.

You can’t attenuate the VRF or accomplish the administration (mgmt) interface as allotment of absence VRF or all-around acquisition table aback such activity is not supported. The abstraction of accepting administration anchorage in altered acquisition table is to abstracted administration arrangement and assembly network, in accession to accommodate VRF into Nexus about-face belvedere and new Catalyst 4500 Supervisor Engines.

You will apprehension that there is a little aberration in VRF command accomplishing amid acceptable IOS and NX-OS. You can additionally put in subnet affectation in CIDR format, aback Nexus belvedere saves any IP abode advice in CIDR format.

Unlike acceptable Catalyst switches that appear with absence Layer-2/3 VLAN 1, Nexus 5000 switches alone appear with absence Layer-2 VLAN 1. If you are because of application non-management about-face anchorage as your customized administration port, it ability not work. Note that Nexus 5000 and 2000 switches are advised as Layer-2 switches originally. The Layer-2 about-face architecture agency that you can’t actualize Layer-3 VLAN on Nexus switches as administration VLAN (i.e. SVI VLAN interfaces 1, 50, or else) like you usually apprehend in acceptable Catalyst switches. You can’t catechumen any non-management about-face anchorage as acquisition anchorage either. In added words, there is no best but to use the mgmt anchorage and get acclimated to VRF ambiance aback you are not acclimated to it yet.

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After assertive NX-OS releases, the Nexus 5000 switches are now Layer-3 able admitting the 2000 archetypal charcoal Layer-2 switch. You may charge to advancement the NX-OS angel and/or advancement the authorization on the 5000 archetypal in adjustment to abutment this Layer-3 functionality.

Some administration command like abetment up your Nexus agreement to TFTP server (copy running-config tftp: command) is additionally because VRF. With archetype running-config tftp: command, you will be asked if the TFTP server is amid aural the absence VRF or abroad (like the administration VRF).

Understanding the Nexus 5000

The Nexus 5000 is for those of us brief and defective to assure advance in 100 M and 1 Gbps ports. It allows Top of Arbor alliance of cabling. Thats the broadcast about-face archetypal mentioned above. Its a way to buy accessories that may be acclimated in added agency activity forward, but that supports your accepted coil of 1 Gbps connections.

Bear in apperception there are some added uses, which may accomplish up added of the N5K use activity forwards. Adapted now the Nexus 5000 provides a way to do Cilia Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) or Abstracts Centermost Bridging (DCB). So you can lose the server HBA and use one (or two, for redundant) 10 G access to backpack both arrangement and SAN cartage up to the N5K. That requires the adapted 10 G NIC, a Converged Arrangement Adapter or CNA.

The accepted access is for you to again breach out the abstracts and SAN cartage to go to Ethernet or SAN switches (or FC-attached storage). In the future, your cartage may be all FCoE until extensive a accessory area the FC accessory is absorbed (or conceivably with FCoE that handles administration additional SAN traffic?).Thats a appealing aboveboard use.

Cisco white cardboard on Unified Admission LayerUnified Admission Layer with Cisco Nexus 5000 Alternation Switches and Cisco Nexus 2000 Alternation Bolt Extenders Band-aid Overview

You can additionally configure your FCoE configured N5K to do Arrangement Anchorage Virtualization, or NPV. This is a per-switch choice, you use either Bolt or NPV mode. Aback the about-face is in NPV mode, it does not access a area ID (a bound resource). Instead, it relays SAN cartage to the bulk switch, in aftereffect extending the bulk switch. The N5K looks like a host to the fabric. This helps the t calibration better, and makes the N5K cellophane (nearly invisible) as far as the fabric. There’s a affair here: beneath boxes to configure, thats a Acceptable Thing!

The commutual NPIV (Network Anchorage Identifier Virtualization) affection supports assorted servers on one interface, e.g. abstracted WWNs (SAN identifiers) per VM on a VMware basal server host. This is awful adorable for aegis (SAN LUN appearance and zoning). Click actuality for accommodation . Note that assertive Cisco MDS switches additionally accomplish NPV and NPIV, and that NPIV has been standardized.

For those accomplishing brand servers and VMware, the Nexus 1000v basal about-face allows accession assimilate UCS anatomy 10 Gbps links instead of abounding abstracted 1 Gbps links. The VN-Link affection allows centralized analytic (1000v) or (future) alien concrete tracking on a per-VM (virtual machine) basis. I currently accept concrete VN-Link as a tag on the media from a VN-Link able NIC or driver, angry to analytic accoutrement to accept agreement clue VN-Link basal interfaces on the N5K. The acumen to do this: offload the 1000v processing to alien hardware.

VN-Link reference

Cisco UCS Integrated InfrastructureCisco VN-Link: Virtualization-Aware NetworkingOverview of VN-Link in Cisco UCS

This is “Network Interface Virtualization”

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The Nexus 5000 (N5K), as able-bodied as the Nexus 7000 (N7K) both abutment Basal Anchorage Channel. Anticipate 6500 VSS but the two “brains” (control planes) break active. Or anticipate PortChannel (LACP) that terminates in two abstracted switches, with the added end of it none the wiser. There is a adequately bound vPC absolute on the N5K adapted now.

There are additionally some gotchas and architecture situations to avoid, e.g. bond non-vPC and vPC VLANs application the aforementioned vPC articulation amid switches.That is, if you accept VLANs that aren’t accomplishing vPC PortChannel uplinks, you’ll appetite a abstracted articulation amid the administration switches the uplinks go to. Similarly in some L3 FHRP (HSRP, VRRP, GLBP) acquisition situations. The affair is cartage that comes up the “wrong” ancillary and goes beyond the vPC associate articulation cannot be advanced out a vPC affiliate articulation on the added basal of the vPC pair, which ability appear in assertive not-too-rare abortion situations.

Understanding the Nexus 2000

There are three t extender (“fex”) accessories available, about for Top of Arbor (“ToR”) use. Use two (and two N5K’s) for back-up in anniversary rack. See also:

Cisco Nexus 2000 Alternation Bolt Extenders Abstracts Sheet

The Nexus 2148 and 2248 are discussed below, beneath Gotchas. There is additionally the 2232 PP, which is 32 10 Gbps Cilia Channel over Etherent (FCoE) ports (SFP ) and 8 10 G Ethernet / FCoE uplinks (SFP ). That’s 4:1 oversubscribed, which isn’t bad for accepted server throughput and loading. If you appetite beneath oversubscription, you don’t accept to use all the ports (or you can align things your way with anchorage pinning, I assume). If you appetite 1:1 oversubscription (“wire speed”), you’d apparently run cilia adapted into the N5K, unless you appetite to use the N2K as a cher 1:1 10 G ToR nut to cilia about-face box.

Note those 10 G ports are FCoE ports. Adapted now, the N5K is the alone Cisco about-face I’m acquainted of accomplishing FCoE. The Nexus 2232 does so as an addendum of the N5K.

Note that NPV and NPIV are basically some proxying in the N5K, so the N2K should aloof act as server-facing FCoE ports for those functions.

Gotchas and Tips

The Nexus 5000 is by absence Layer 2 only. That agency any server VLAN to VLAN cartage amid two altered VLANs will charge to be baffled by addition box, apparently your Bulk and / or Accession Nexus 7000. You’ll appetite some abuse big pipes from the N5K to the N7K, at atomic until the N5K can do bounded routing.

The Nexus 2000 does no bounded switching. Cartage from one anchorage on a 2K to addition on the aforementioned 2K goes via the N5K. There should be abundant bandwidth. Thats why the Nexus 2000 is referred to as a t extender, not a switch.

The Nexus 2148 T is a Gigabit-only blade, 48 ports of Gig (not 10/100/1000) with up to 4 x 10 G t connections. Use the new 2248 TP if you charge 100/1000 adequacy (the abstracts area does NOT account 10 Mbps).

You’ll apparently appetite to use PortChannel (LACP) for the t connections. Otherwise, you’re pinning ports to uplinks, and if the uplink fails, your ports affianced to it don’t work; apparently like a bore abortion in a 6500. You can now do the PortChannel to two N5K’s alive Basal Anchorage Channel (vPC). See the aloft articulation for some pictures.

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If you attach to the t extender (fex, N2K), you can affair appearance belvedere software redwood command. The sts, bulk and accident keywords are decidedly interesting. The above shows a diagram, the closing appearance ante and oversubscription drops (or so it appears). I like actuality able to see centralized oversubscription drops after relying on alien SNMP tools; which usually appearance ante over almost continued periods of time, like 5 or added minutes, rather than milliseconds.

Putting a N5K into NPV access reboots the about-face and flushes its configuration. Be careful!

Designing with the Nexus 5000 and/or 2000

I’ve got a brace of barter area the N5K/N2K accept seemed appropriate. I anticipation I’d briefly acknowledgment a brace of things that I noticed in aggravating to architecture application the boxes; maybe adequately obvious, maybe a gotcha. I’d like to anticipate the aboriginal adventure is a nice affinity of how the N5K/N2K lets you do article you couldn’t do before!

Case Study 1

The aboriginal chump bearings is a armpit area assorted servers are in DMZ’s of assorted aegis levels. Instead of affective the servers to a physically abstracted abstracts centermost server zone, as appears to accept been originally advised (big Nortel switches from a few years back), they continued the assorted DMZ VLANs to the assorted concrete server zones application baby Cisco switches with optical uplinks. That accessory (especially the Nortel switches) is accepting rather old, and it’s time to alter it.

For that, the N5K/N2K looks perfect. We can put one or a brace of N5K’s in to alter the big Nortel “DMZ bury core” switches, and put N5K’s out in the server zones (rows or multi-row areas of racks). For redundancy, we can bifold accumulated up. Adapted now one can accomplish that assignment in a basal way, and it sounds like Cisco will adequately anon accept some nice VPC (Virtual Anchorage Channel) appearance to abbreviate the bulk of Spanning Tree in such a bifold N5K/N2K design, application Multi-Chassis EtherChannel (aka VPC). Neat stuff!

The way I’m cerebration of this is as a broadcast or “horizontally smeared” 6500 about-face (or about-face pair). The N2K Bolt Extender (FEX) accessories act like basal blades. There’s no Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) alive up to the N5K (good), and no bounded switching (maybe not absolutely wonderful, but simple and absurd to account an STP loop). So the N5K/N2K architecture is like a 6500 with the Sup in one area and the blades advance beyond others.

From that perspective, the 40 Gbps of uplinks per N2K FEX is almost commensurable to accepted 6500 backplane speeds. So the “smeared 6500” affinity holds up in that regard.

The sleeper in all this is that the 10 G eyes aren’t cheap. So accomplishing say 10-12 zones of 40 G of uplink, times eyes and possibly adapted multi-mode cilia (MMF) application cords, adds say 12 x ($2000) of cost, or $24,000 total. Certainly not a show-stopper, but article to agency into your budget. If you’re because accomplishing it with single-mode cilia (SMF), the amount is a bit higher. On the added hand, that array of broadcast Layer 2 about-face is a ample Spanning-Tree area if you body it with above-mentioned technology.

Case Study 2

The additional chump bearings is a abate shop, not that abounding servers but adorable for a acceptable Top of Arbor (ToR) band-aid activity forward. The above Abstracts Centermost amplitude is accepting re-used (it was too aboveboard empty?). And brand servers may eventually acquiesce them to fit all the servers into one or two brand server enclosures in one rack. Adapted now were adorable at article like 12 back-to-back racks of stuff, including switches.

For ToR, the 3560-E, 3750-E, 4900M, and N5K/N2K all appear to mind. The another band-aid that comes to apperception is a burst bulk brace of 6500s. The cabling would be messier, but the bifold anatomy access would action added advance potential, and a nice big backplane (fabric).

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The 3560-E and 3750-E accept a 20 G of uplink per anatomy limitation, not shabby, not absolutely up to the 6500 accommodation per blade. That’s applicable and not too limiting.

The affair is, what do you accumulated them into? A abate 6500 chassis? In that case, the alternatives are 6500 brace by themselves, or 6500’s (maybe smaller) additional some 3560-E’s or added baby ToR switches, at some added cost.

Or the N5K/N2K, one ability think. The N5K/N2K is Layer 2 alone adapted now, so you charge some way to avenue amid the assorted server VLANs (gotcha!). After Layer 3 availability, you still would charge to affix the N5K/N2K’s to article like 4900M’s or 6500’s, to get some appealing acceptable Layer 3 switching achievement amid VLANs. Adapted now, that alien affiliation is either a appealing solid bottleneck, or you bake a lot of ports accomplishing 8 way or (future) 16 way EtherChannel off the N5K/N2K. Bzzzt! That starts activity rather klugey.

Some Conclusions

• The N5K/N2K adapted now seems to fit in bigger with a Nexus 7000 abaft it. And I’d abundant adopt bounded Layer 3 switching to aerate inter-VLAN switching performance.

• The antecedent set of Nexus band appearance are apparently called for beyond customers; standalone Layer 3 N5K/N2K actuality article added adorable to a abate site. And abate sites tend not to be aboriginal technology adopters.

• You can abate this to some admeasurement by accurate adjustment of servers in VLANs. On the added hand, my apprehend on accepted Abstracts Centermost architecture is that the atomic advance in numbers of servers and the charge for adaptability accept larboard “careful adjustment of servers” in the actual dust. Nobody’s got the time anymore.

Sample Configurations

Check out the afterward FAQ for illustrations.

»Cisco Forum FAQ »Sample Configuration: Nexus 5000 and Nexus 2000 with FEX

Dual Aing Nexus 2000s to Nexus 5000s

Loading Images Adjustment Matters!

After ahead dual-connecting one of the FEXes, we upgraded the NX-OS on the N5Ks. As I recall, we upgraded N5K-2 first, again N5K-1. This is non-optimal, if N5K-1 is the vPC primary as was the case.

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When we adapted N5K-2, as you ability expect, N5K-2 downloaded a new angel to its affiliated FEX. Aback we upgraded N5K-1, it additionally downloaded the aforementioned angel to its affiliated FEX. This is the aforementioned FEX module, and anniversary download of the angel took the FEX offline for 15 account or so.

Cisco abstracts accompaniment that the NX-OS software by architecture will acquiesce an upgraded dual-home FEX to interoperate with the vPC accessory switches alive the aboriginal adaptation of Cisco NX-OS while the primary about-face is alive the advancement version. You will accept to accept some blow to get the angel loaded.

However, the affidavit doesn’t say annihilation about what happens aback you aboriginal advancement the accessory N5K of dual-home FEX. My advocacy is not to do it, you may charge a additional angel download to the FEX.

Adding Uplink to Additional N5K

All of the FEXes were declared to be bifold affiliated to both N5Ks. Due to timing constraints and cilia availability, some FEX modules were larboard distinct affiliated for a aeon of time. In this case, they had alone been affiliated to N5K-2, the vPC accessory about-face and were alive the accepted NX-OS image.

Based on our adventures afterlight the image, we were not abiding if aing the uplink to the N5K-1 would accompany the FEX bottomward while N5K-1 reloaded the image. I was not able to verify from the Nexus affidavit what would appear admitting Cisco affidavit recommends aing the primary first. However, we did acquisition that aback we brought up the never-previously affiliated articulation to the N5K-1, the FEX backward on line.

Pre-provision the FEX

You can and should pre-provision FEX modules, for example:

This allows you to pre-load the VLANs, speed, duplex, description etc for the host interfaces afore the FEX modules are connected. Note that you charge to apperceive what blazon of FEX you accept for this command aback the N2K-C2248T is altered than the N2K-C2248TP-E-1GE, and is what you appetite aback you accept a archetypal cardinal N2K-C2248TP.

Good Handling of Improperly Affiliated FEX Modules

The NX-OS appears to handle cross-connected FEX modules appropriately. At one point, addition affiliated the additional uplink for FEX 101 to the N5K interface configured as port-channel 102 (FEX 102 should accept been placed there). About the NX-OS noticed the mismatch, knew that FEX 101 was mis-cabled, alerted and larboard the additional N5Ks FEX offline, but did not abeyance the alive FEX.

Some Discussions


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