The device operates in one of the following modes:
Standalone mode—The device cannot form an IRF fabric with other devices.
IRF mode—The device can form an IRF fabric with other devices.
IRF member roles
IRF uses two member roles: master and standby (called subordinate throughout the documentation).
When devices form an IRF fabric, they elect a master to manage and control the IRF fabric, and all the
other devices back up the master. When the master device fails, the other devices automatically elect a
new master. For more information about master election, see
IRF member ID
An IRF fabric uses member IDs to uniquely identify and manage its members. This member ID information
is included as the first part of interface numbers and file paths to uniquely identify interfaces and files in
an IRF fabric. Two devices cannot form an IRF fabric if they have the same IRF member ID. A device
cannot join an IRF fabric if its member ID has been used in the fabric.
For example, after you assign a device with a member ID of 2 to an IRF fabric, the name of interface
Ten-GigabitEthernet 3/0/1 changes to Ten-GigabitEthernet 2/3/0/1. The file path changes from
slot16#flash:/test.cfg to chassis2#slot16#flash:/test.cfg.
Each IRF member device has one or two MPUs. The following are MPU roles:
An IRF port is a logical interface that connects IRF member devices. Every IRF-capable device has two IRF
Active MPU of the master device. It is also called the global active MPU. You
configure and manage the entire IRF fabric at the CLI of the global active MPU.
Active MPU on each member device. An active MPU performs the following
Manages the local device, including synchronizing configuration with the
local standby MPU, processing protocol packets, and creating and
maintaining route entries.
Processes IRF-related events, such as master election and topology collection.
For the master MPU, all other MPUs are standby MPUs, including active MPUs
on subordinate devices.
If a member device has two MPUs, the MPU backing up the local active MPU is
the local standby MPU from the perspective of the member device.