Identifying the master switch and planning IRF member IDs
Determine which switch you want to use as the master for managing all member switches in the IRF fabric.
An IRF fabric has only one master switch. You configure and manage all member switches in the IRF
fabric at the command line interface of the master switch.
IRF member switches will automatically elect a master. You can affect the election result by assigning a
high member priority to the intended master switch. For more information about master election, see
A5500 HI Switch Series IRF Configuration Guide
Prepare an IRF member ID assignment scheme. An IRF fabric uses member IDs to uniquely identify and
manage its members, and you must assign each IRF member switch a unique member ID.
Planning IRF topology and connections
You can create an IRF fabric in daisy chain topology, or more reliably, ring topology. In ring topology,
the failure of one IRF link does not cause the IRF fabric to split as in daisy chain topology. Rather, the IRF
fabric changes to a daisy chain topology without interrupting network services.
You connect the IRF member switches through IRF ports, the logical interfaces for the connections
between IRF member switches. Each IRF member switch has two IRF ports: IRF-port 1 and IRF-port 2. To
use an IRF port, you must bind at least one physical port to it.
When connecting two neighboring IRF member switches, you must connect the physical ports of IRF-port
1 on one switch to the physical ports of IRF-port 2 on the other switch.
The A5500 HI switches can provide 10-GE IRF connections through the SFP+ ports on the front panel and
the CX4, XFP, or SFP+ interface card at the rear of the chassis, and you can bind several CX4, XFP, or
SFP+ ports to an IRF port for increased bandwidth and availability.
• Figure 34
(2 slots) switches that have two 2-port 10 GE SFP+ interface cards for IRF connections.
The IRF port connections in the two figures are for illustration only, and more connection methods are
For information about the physical ports available for IRF connections on different A5500 HI switches,
show the topologies for an IRF fabric made up of three A5500-24G-4SFP HI