I have a school that is 100% Macs. I am using a Cisco 2600 series router for the LAN. It is routing IP only and also running NAT internet services. My question is should appletalk routing be on in my router and also would creating multiple zones help speed up the response time from computers to servers.
If you only have one router, adding appletalk routing and seeding the zone will not increase performance. It won't hurt though either. The difference is that your mac's will boot up in a range of appletalk numbers and will have a zone name attached to it instead of "*" If you have multiple ethernet segments terminating in the router, it would allow the appletalk packets to traverse the segments. The best payoff would be to make sure that all your mac's and servers are updated to the versions that support AFP over TCP/IP (ASIP 5.x and higher, and the newer versions of OpenTransport for the classic Mac OS, Mac OS X also supports all these features) Once the connection is made to the server, it will switch over to TCP/IP and you won't even be using appletalk at that point. You must make sure that the client machine can ping (TCP/IP) the server's IP address and you'll be golden. If you want to add appletalk zones just add:
appletalk cable-range 100-101
appletalk zone YourZoneHere
For each digit in the cable-range, you can support 254 computers. So if you have 1000 computers, you must have a cable range that spans at least 4 digits or more (100-105 would do)
You must have a different cable range for each interface that you want Appletalk on, but you can keep the same Zone name, but this can cause performance issues as broadcast messages will traverse the connections.
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