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When do I need to install a SFM in my 6509?

We are considering the installation of a 16 port 10/100/1000BaseTX module in our core 6509s for some of our gig enabled servers. This raises some questions: At what point do you need to enable the x-bar with a SFC? In other words, what is the best way to quantify the current load on the 32GBps bus?

Background: We are running Hybrid CatOS 6.3(8)/ IOS 12.1(11b)E4, Sup1A with MSFC2. Is it correct that we have to upgrade to a Sup2 and run Native OS before introducing the SFM2? The scale and cost of the upgrade would then magnify meaning that I would need to know that it was all necessary.

Any assistance gratefully accepted.

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Re: When do I need to install a SFM in my 6509?

Your configuration supports a switch fabric module as it stands, but whether you get any benefit from it depends on whether the line cards you already have are fabric-enabled or not. If most of the switching between the gigabit ports will remain within the new WS-X6516-GE-TX module, you would probably get more benefit from providing it with a distributed forwarding card (WS-F6K-DFC) on the line card.

The "show system" command will tell you the current backplane utilisation. You can, of course get this information also through snmp and graph it using e.g. MRTG, for more reliable and authoritative evidence.

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