FAQ for Trunking Technology
Q: What is trunking? How's the function and spec for these products?
The concept of trunking firstly used by Cisco. 3Com called it "port trunking" and Cisco call it "Fast EtherChannel".
The simple meaning for "trunking" is "Aggregate more link as a big pipe(trunk)". Most of switch vendor they
support 4-link as a trunk, it provide 400Mbps x2 (full-duplex) for maximum capacity in this trunk.
Q: Is there any standard or de-facto standard, or proprietary standard for "Trunking"?
There is a study group in IEEE 802.3ad. They call "trunking" or "Link aggregation" (for more info:
Q: How many vendors implement "Trunking" feature in their product, NIC, hub or switch?
3Com: switch 3300 and NIC
Intel: switch and NIC
Bay: Switch(Bay 350T f/w:2.0)
Q: How's the compatibility for those products?
It's currently Very poor. That's why 3Com, Bay, Cisco, Sun want to propose their standard in IEEE 802.3ad study group.
The interoperability problem will be solved after the standard is finalized.
Q: What vendor support trunking function on their Server card?
1) How many vendors have this?3Com, Intel
2) How's the function? including D-Link's?
load sharing and backup link
3) How do they work with trunking device?
3Com's server NIC implement VLAN tag into their NIC software to work with 3Com
switch's trunking function. Intel also implement VLAN to work with "Cisco's
Sun's solution: http://www.sun.com/products-n-solutions/hw/networking/
Intel's solution INTEL Etherexpress Pro/100 Server Adapter
(The Etherexpress Pro/100 Server Adapter is an intelligent
10/100 Mbit/s server adapter designed to maximize LAN server
resources. It supports Cisco ISL Virtual LANs and includes an
William Liu/PMD,D-Link Corp.