Cisco is on my short list…of enemies!

We’re investing (heavily) into IBM Blade Servers and VMWare at the office, and we got a brand-spanking new BladeCenter … (the chassis that holds each of those Blade Servers…think laptop docking station but for databases and email servers) … just before the winter break.

One of the first things Scott and I tried to configure networking modules, also known as the “Cisco Intelligent Gigabit Ethernet Switch Modules” or CIGESMs for short. Really, they should be called CYHTBMITSHESMs … as in “Cisco’s You-have-to-be-more-intelligent-than-Stephen-Hawking-ESMs” … The learning curve is so steep on these switches that it almost completely negates the usability features built into the rest of the IBM equipment that surrounds it.

It’s like putting a DOS prompt on an iPod; it just doesn’t make any sense!

The documentation doesn’t help. A couple of those PDFs are over 500 pages long, and filled with so much networking jargon and tech-speak, it might as well be a different language.

But, CIGESM, I have conquered you! I wanted to modify the VLAN configuration for particular ports attached to particular blades, and through many hours of sifting through technical support forums, gleaning small hints here and there on what exactly to do, and a little bit of trial and error, I am now a CIGESM VLAN master. Behold; the words below will open the doors to VLAN-nirvana.

configure terminal
vlan 3
name Firewall
vlan 400
name DummyVLAN
interface gi0/1
switchport mode trunk
switchport access vlan 3
no switchport trunk native vlan
switchport trunk allowed vlan 2,3
spanning-tree enablebpdufilter
spanning-tree portfast enable

It’s the “no switchport trunk native vlan” spell that’s the key.

Na’maste. <bow>

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