A client of mine recently installed a Cisco 4006 switch with a Supervisor IV module. Once completed they began experiencing very poor IPX traffic performance - IP works fine. On the recommendation of their vendor, they offloaded the IPX routing to a 3640 (private WAN) router. Other documentation that I have read here in this forum and on CCO recommends doing this to improve IPX routing performance.
Unfortunately, after offloading the IPX routing to the 3640, the average CPU utilization on the 3640 has doubled - it averages at 80% and at times peaks to 99 and 100 percent. This, of course, has not improved IPX routing performance.
What can I do to reduce the CPU load on the 3640 router? Can I tweak the IPX routing to provide some iterim relief? We plan to upgrade the desktops and convert them to IP-only in about six months. So far I have considered the following modifications to provide temporary relief:
1. Configure the 3640 router for incremental SAPs across the WAN - if running EIGRP this should be the default.
2. Enable Novell fast switching - enabled on appropriate interface(s) by default when Novell routing is enabled.
3. Implement SAP filtering
4. Enable port channeling btwn the 4006 switch and 3640 router.
5. Enable QOS on the switch to filter out IP traffic sent to the router.
6. Upgrade the Novell client from 4.11 to 4.83 for Novell 'heavy hitters" to enable IP on those workstations - they will still use IPX for printing until future desktop upgrade.
Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated..
The IPX and Appletalk Routing on 4006 sup III ( am not sure abt sup IV ) is done in software only and hence there would be a performance hit. So it would be better to configure IPX routing on an external device.
I guess turning on fast switching with the ipx route-cache command would help and also incremental updates with eigrp on the WAN links is a good idea.
You could also check the cpu usage at regular intervals to determine if the high utilization is consistent.
If the problem is excessive usage, then you need to upgrade your network in some way so that load
balancing occurs during times of peak use or you need to use a more powerful router.
The following doc might give you some more information on troubleshooting high CPU utilization.
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