How Effective is Trunking?

How Effective is Trunking?

Post by Bruce Spence » Sat, 24 Apr 1999 04:00:00



According to Sun's web site, trunking increases network band width on a
system by installing multiple ethernet adapters sharing one IP address.
Network traffic is "stripped" across the adapters.  However, I would think
that if you have four 100 Mb/s ethernet adapters in one system, the external
100Mb network would be the bottleneck.  How much does trunking improve
performance?
 
 
 

How Effective is Trunking?

Post by Tim Campbel » Tue, 27 Apr 1999 04:00:00


     According to Sun's web site, trunking increases network band width on a
     system by installing multiple ethernet adapters sharing one IP address.
     Network traffic is "stripped" across the adapters.  However, I would think

     that if you have four 100 Mb/s ethernet adapters in one system, the
     external
     100Mb network would be the bottleneck.  How much does trunking improve
     performance?

Consider the following guidelines:

  1. The switch has to support trunking (Cisco calls it "FEC" for "Fast Ether
     Channel")
  2. The switch need not necessarily have large pipes capable of saturating
     your trunked connection.  You could have several small pipes going off to
     other systems or routers whose combined traffic to your server would
     saturate the 100BaseT connection in which case the trunk could still play
     to your advantage.  Obviously the switch could also just have a very large

  3. You also need CPU power to drive the trunk.  Sun advises me that you need
     at least 500MHz of CPU power to fully drive a single QFE card with all
     four ports trunked together. Obviously you'll need multiple CPUs to get to
     500MHz since they don't sell a CPU that fast (at least not yet).  So they
     also require that the CPUs that you "add together" to give you 500MHz each
     be at least 250MHz (I *think* this is right. The requirment might be
     300MHz -- you should try to verify this w/Sun).  In other words,  4
     x167MHz CPUs wont be able to fully drive the QFE card, but 2 x 300MHz CPUs
     _would_ be able to do this.
  4. Finally, trunking isn't builtin to Solaris. You have to buy some software
     (drivers) from Sun to get it to work.

--
---------------------------------------------------

  "Very funny Scotty... now beam down my clothes"
---------------------------------------------------

 
 
 

How Effective is Trunking?

Post by Griff Miller I » Wed, 28 Apr 1999 04:00:00



> According to Sun's web site, trunking increases network band width on a
> system by installing multiple ethernet adapters sharing one IP address.
> Network traffic is "stripped" across the adapters.  However, I would think
> that if you have four 100 Mb/s ethernet adapters in one system, the external
> 100Mb network would be the bottleneck.  How much does trunking improve
> performance?

Perhaps the difference is that trunking doesn't work on just any
100Mbit network - you have to have the correct hardware on the other
end of the cables for it to work, e.g. a Cisco switch (vs. a hub) .

--
Griff Miller II
Senior Unix/NT Sysadmin
PGS Tensor - Houston, TX            "I need to be the owner of all of

 
 
 

1. This clone thing...am I stupid, or am I right?


says...

I admire your passion, Chris..

The only issues which have kept myself from looking seriously at Linux
would be:

* It's Unix and the learning curve to start getting productive strikes me
as probably very steep

* It doesn't support plug-and-play.  If your hardware doesn't have Linux
drivers, it don't play..

* Not nearly the amount of developers out there doing stuff for Linux as
there are for Wintel.  Can I get MS Office for Linux?  Can I get
Photoshop for Linux?  Can I get QuarkXpress for Linux? etc.. a big turn
off for me.

--
Reuben King
Email: "reuben at texas dot net" (in plain english to foil spam-bots.
grrr!)

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