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Architecture for Stackable Hub Management

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000117305D
Original Publication Date: 1996-Feb-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-31
Document File: 8 page(s) / 215K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Allen, JJ: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Disclosed is an architecture that defines a method for managing Ethernet stackable hubs. The disclosed method provides the following management features: a single point of hub management which provides a single appearance at the Network Management station, a simple daisy chain cabling scheme between the hub modules for management control, full management across all segmentation boundaries, support for redundant Management modules, the extensibility and flexibility to dynamically add hub modules to the stack, and a Multi-threaded method of processing management frames.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 31% of the total text.

Architecture for Stackable Hub Management

      Disclosed is an architecture that defines a method for managing
Ethernet stackable hubs.  The disclosed method provides the following
management features:  a single point of hub management which provides
a single appearance at the Network Management station, a simple daisy
chain cabling scheme between the hub modules for management control,
full management across all segmentation boundaries, support for
redundant Management modules, the extensibility and flexibility to
dynamically add hub modules to the stack, and a Multi-threaded method
of processing management frames.

      A trend exists today where Ethernet Stackable Hubs are widely
deployed throughout enterprises to provide LAN access to users.  Most
managed stackable Ethernet Hubs contain a management module that
contains an SNMP Agent that provides the network management function
for the entire stackable work group hub.  These designs implement a
single Media Access Control (MAC) to provide the network access to
the SNMP Agent.  These designs require a single threaded processing
of the management frames.  For example, all requests flow to the
management module and then the management module must retrieve the
information in a sequential fashion from each of the expansion hubs.
This disclosure defines a scalable management architecture with
virtually no limit to the extensibility of expansion hubs.

Improved management capability is provided by:
  1.  adding an additional MAC to the each hub module
  2.  placing the additional MAC on the management hub on a dedicated
       local management segment
  3.  placing the additional MAC on the expansion hubs on a dedicated
       local management segment.

In other words, the additional MAC creates a dedicated management
segment for network management frame flows.

      The block diagram (Fig. 1) shows the system structure of the
Management module of the stackable hub.  The Primary MAC is connected
into the Repeater Chipset and is used to receive/send the management
frames from the Network Management Station.  The additional MAC is
used to send/receive management requests to the expansion modules in
the stackable hub.  The additional MAC creates a local ethernet
segment that is dedicated to network management traffic.  This
Management Segment is a full ethernet 10 megabit segment dedicated to
the management of the stack.  The full 10 megabit provides the
bandwidth to extend the hub stack with numerous expansion modules.
This hardware solution provides the structure to implement a software
architecture to manage stackable hubs.

      The block diagram (Fig. 2) shows the system structure of the
hub expansion modules.  The Ethernet LAN traffic flows through the
Repeater chipset and the MAC is dedicated to the
reception/transmission of network management frames.  All Network
Management frames flow through the MAC which is part of a dedicated
local segm...