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compatibility between Cisco and Nortel

the client had two Nortel 8610 Passport switches; they are adding two Cisco 6509 on a new site thru metro ethernet links.

Site A Site B

Nortel 8610 ----- Cisco 6509

| |

Nortel 8610 ----- Cisco 6509

What are the options on layer 3 redundancy protocol between the two sites?

What is my best options here, layer 2 or layer 3 between the two sites?



Re: compatibility between Cisco and Nortel


Re: compatibility between Cisco and Nortel


If you plan to run L3 links, you should be using a routing protocol like OSPF.

My best bet would be to have routed ports in the 6509 ans SVI configured on the nortel switches.

I have this setup in my office though there is no redundancy but shouldn't matter.

It's not easy creating a routed port on the 8610 and hence it is adviceable to create a seperate vlan/SVI on the nortel switch and have the port connecting to the 6509 in this vlan.

The 6509 can be configured as a routed port and can run OSPF on it.

HTH, rate if it does


New Member

Re: compatibility between Cisco and Nortel

if i plan on layer 3 links, i have some questions:

if i run OSPF on both sides; if link#1 is down, does OSPF redirect to the link#2 automatically?

Or i still need to run redundancy protocol on the Cisco side (may be HSRP) and the Nortel side (not familiar)?

Re: compatibility between Cisco and Nortel

Hi Kope,

All you need to have have is VRRP on both the sidez, because nortel doesn't support HSRP, where as cisco supports cisco supports HSRP(being its own) & VRRP (universal)

Re: compatibility between Cisco and Nortel


HSRP & VRRP are layer 2 concepts. If you run any of these 2, you would need to have a static route to the virtual IP address from both sides as routing protocol use the interface ip address for forwarding.

Regarding your question on redundancy, OSPF can loadbalance as well as provide redundancy. L3 failover too is much faster.

The scenario i mentioned would actually loadbalance traffic across both links. If you want one of the links to be acting as standby, you can tune the OSPF cost to achieve it

HTH, rate if it does


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