Blog Posts in September 2016

Distributed On-Demand Network Testing (ToDD) with Matt Oswalt

In March 2016 my friend Matt Oswalt announced a distributed network testing framework that he used for validation in his network automation / continuous integration projects. Initial tests included ping and DNS probes, and he added HTTP testing in May 2016.

The project continues to grow (and already got its own Github and documentation page) and Matt was kind enough to share the news and future plans in Episode 63 of Software Gone Wild.

To ask questions about the project, join the Todd channel on networktocode Slack team (self-registration at

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How Many vMotion Events Can You Expect in a Data Center?

One of my friends sent me this question:

How many VM moves do you see in a medium and how many in a large data center environment per second and per minute? What would be a reasonable maximum?

Obviously the answer to the first part is it depends (please share your experience in the comments), so we’ll focus on the second one. It’s time for another Fermi estimate.

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Why Would I Use BGP and not OSPF between Servers and the Network?

While we were preparing for the Cumulus Networks’ Routing on Hosts webinar Dinesh Dutt sent me a message along these lines:

You categorically reject the use of OSPF, but we have a couple of customers using it quite happily. I’m sure you have good reasons, and the reasons you list [in the presentation] are ones I agree with. OTOH, why not use totally stubby areas with hosts in such an area?

How about:

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Whitebox Switching at LinkedIn with Russ White on Software Gone Wild

When LinkedIn announced their Project Falco I knew exactly what one of my future Software Gone Wild podcasts would be: a chat with Russ White (Mr. CCDE, now network architect @ LinkedIn).

It took us a long while (and then the summer break intervened) but I finally got it published: Episode 62 is waiting for you.

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Running BGP between Virtual Machine and ToR Switch

One of my readers left this question on the blog post resurfacing the idea of running BGP between servers and ToR switches:

When using BGP on a VM for mobility, what is the best way to establish a peer relationship with a new TOR switch after a live migration? The VM won't inherently know the peer address or the ASN.

As always, the correct answer is it depends.

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Questions about Network Automation Workshop

Marcel Reuter sent me a few questions about my upcoming Network Automation workshop. You might find them interesting, so here they are:

We have a lab with virtual IOS-XE, IOS-XR and Junos (vMX) router. I would like to learn how to provisioning the Lab router.

Covered in the workshop. I’m focusing on vIOS (which is pretty close to IOS Classic and IOS-XE) and Nexus OS because that’s what I can get up and running quickly in VIRL.

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Do We Still Need OSPF Areas and Summarization?

One of my ExpertExpress design discussions focused on WAN network design and the need for OSPF areas and summarization (the customer had random addressing and the engineers wondered whether it makes sense to renumber the network to get better summarization).

I was struggling with the question of whether we still need OSPF areas and summarization in 2016 for a long time. Here are my thoughts on the topic; please share yours in the comments.

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Using BGP in Leaf-and-Spine Fabrics

In the Leaf-and-Spine Fabric Designs webinar series we started with the simplest possible design: non-redundant server connectivity with bridging within a ToR switch and routing across the fabric.

After I explained the basics (including routing protocol selection, route summarization, link aggregation and addressing guidelines), Dinesh Dutt described how network architects use BGP when building leaf-and-spine fabrics.

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