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  • What is Bridge Assurance?

    While doing some other research recently, I ran across the Bridge Assurance feature in Cisco gear, which was new to me. Cisco has been working on ways to avoid STP melt-down and Bridge Assurance is another tool to help network administrators keep networks...
  • Spanning Tree Protocol and Failure Domains

    Co-worker Pete Welcher recently helped a customer whose network experienced a spanning tree loop (i.e. a melt-down). Several things can be learned from thinking about the experience and how to avoid it. Lesson #1: Adequately plan the task. Rush jobs carry...
  • Identifying Unsaved Running Configurations

    Have you ever lost a device configuration because you forgot to save it to NVRAM and the device later rebooted, perhaps due to a power outage? More than likely some feature or function that had been operating correctly since the last change suddenly stopped...
  • Interview with TrainSignal posted

    I just finished an interview with Matt Elias at TrainSignal Training and they posted it at http://www.trainsignaltraining.com/first-ccie-terry-slattery/2009-12-08/ . Matt asked a bunch of questions around training and certification. Of particular interest...
  • Auto-negotiate Duplex or not?

    I've done a number of network assessments in which I find that the customer insists on manually configuring the interfaces for full duplex. I did a little research on the topic and found an interesting paper by Jim Eggers and Steve Hodnett at Sun...
  • Saved by the Configuration Repository!

    We recently had a near-disaster occur at a customer. A 6500 10/100 ethernet blade had died and was replaced. When the replacement blade was installed, the configuration for its interfaces disappeared from the configuration! The techs couldn't figure...
  • Network Availability and High Availability Networks

    Scott Hogg of Global Technology Resources (GTRI) did a nice blog post for Network World way back in April, 2009 about High Expectations of Network Availability (http://www.networkworld.com/community/node/40827) and a slightly more recent one in May, "...
  • Analyzing Throughput Testing Data

    Last week I helped a customer with firewall throughput testing that generated some interesting results. It is educational to look at the test results to understand how we determined what was happening from the data we collected. The test configuration...
  • Syslog Summary Script

    I just finished posting a neat syslog summary script that was passed to me by Phil Koontz. He uses it every day to keep track of syslog events. You can download it from the Netcraftsmen website: http://www.netcraftsmen.net/Resources/Technical Articles...
  • Handling Event Data, Part 2

    I'm continuing the list of NMS event handling requirements. Unstable interfaces In the last post, Handling Event Data, Part 1, I talked about correlating interface up/down events. I would also like to know if an interface is unstable. This is where...
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