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New Member

Stacking vs Clustering 2960S

Hi,

I'm trying to decide between stacking and clustering two Cisco WS-C2960S. I'm setting up a Hyper-V cluster and need to incorporate redundancy at the switching level for the servers and SANs that will connect to this network (all SAN, cluster, and heartbeat traffic will travel through these switches).

In terms of redundancy and manageability, the stack is a better approach for the requirements at hand because I can manage the two switches as one unit and they appear to the rest of the LAN as one unit as well. But the cost and delay (in shipping) of the C2960S-STACK module is dissuading me from this option.

As an alternative I'm looking into clustering these switches, but this is something I haven't done.

What is a better approach for this requirement? Stacking or Clustering?

In a Stack, do both switches transmit concurrently? Or is one in a passive state?

I understand that in a Cluster one switch would act as the primary and the other as secondary (passive), which means I may lose some capacity. Can someone confirm?

If someone has a good reference for configuring switch clusters, please post a link.

thanks

2 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

Accepted Solutions

Unfortunately I am not

Unfortunately I am not familiar with clustering. However with stacking both switches will forward traffic, as you should see from the link that one of the benefits of stacking is cross stack etherchannel, which as you know load balances traffic across two or more links, so yes they are both active. 

Super Bronze

DisclaimerThe Author of this

Disclaimer

The Author of this posting offers the information contained within this posting without consideration and with the reader's understanding that there's no implied or expressed suitability or fitness for any purpose. Information provided is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as rendering professional advice of any kind. Usage of this posting's information is solely at reader's own risk.

Liability Disclaimer

In no event shall Author be liable for any damages whatsoever (including, without limitation, damages for loss of use, data or profit) arising out of   the use or inability to use the posting's information even if Author has been advised of the possibility of such damage.

Posting

Generally, stacking takes multiple switches and have them function as one.  (The multiple switches become like a chassis.)

Generally, clustering takes multiple switches and manages them as one.  (The multiple switches are still multiple switches.)

Usually, stacking is the superior approach.

5 REPLIES

For that setup I would go

For that setup I would go with stacking, which is what I typically do. The link should help:

http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collateral/switches/catalyst-2960-series-switches/white_paper_c11-578928.html

 

New Member

Thanks for the reference. I

Thanks for the reference. I had looked through that article as part of my research. What wasn't clear from it though is whether in a two-member stack, the non-master switch remains in a passive state (i.e. not passing trafffic). 

Something else I still have not found is whether clustering provides me the same benefits as stacking, but with a slightly different implementation. Perhaps i'm confusing what clustering would do in this environment?
 

Unfortunately I am not

Unfortunately I am not familiar with clustering. However with stacking both switches will forward traffic, as you should see from the link that one of the benefits of stacking is cross stack etherchannel, which as you know load balances traffic across two or more links, so yes they are both active. 

Super Bronze

DisclaimerThe Author of this

Disclaimer

The Author of this posting offers the information contained within this posting without consideration and with the reader's understanding that there's no implied or expressed suitability or fitness for any purpose. Information provided is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as rendering professional advice of any kind. Usage of this posting's information is solely at reader's own risk.

Liability Disclaimer

In no event shall Author be liable for any damages whatsoever (including, without limitation, damages for loss of use, data or profit) arising out of   the use or inability to use the posting's information even if Author has been advised of the possibility of such damage.

Posting

Generally, stacking takes multiple switches and have them function as one.  (The multiple switches become like a chassis.)

Generally, clustering takes multiple switches and manages them as one.  (The multiple switches are still multiple switches.)

Usually, stacking is the superior approach.

New Member

Thank you for the valuable

Thank you for the valuable info. I shall now get stack modules.

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