Show 18 – The Pushers Answer Your Questions

What You’ll Hear

This week, we get a report about HP Tech Day, and then devote most of the show to answering questions sent in by you, the listener!

  • Greg talks about his visit to sunny California for HP Tech Day (click for various slideshows).  We discuss Virtual Connect in detail for no obvious reason, mostly because Ethan has great trouble expressing himself clearly.
  • Greg goes long on the HP Network product range and pontificates on how HP Networking is going to come to market, and depth on the product range, some ideas on their marketing position and pricing strategy. Overall, HP is going to be here to stay whether you like it or not and impact on Cisco position.
  • HP accelerated certification for Cisco certified people comes up as a topic – if you’re a CCNP or CCIE, HP wants to give you a crash course on how to make their networking gear do something useful.  We see this as a shrewd way for HP to bridge the familiarity gap.
  • The Pushers express colossal ignorance about GVRP or MVRP, but Greg has promised research and a blog post.
  • Dan’s getting into optical networking and DWDM a little bit.
  • Citrix Netscalar isn’t getting much love from the Pushers.  F5 owns us, you see.  (Not really.)
  • We learn that, as a child, Greg was forced into the Australian outback where he had to kill harmless animals in order to feed himself.  Explains a lot, doesn’t it?
  • We discuss a detailed demographic profile of our audience and what we’ve learned from it.  Okay…not THAT detailed.  Well actually, we’re just making demographics up based on a single e-mail from a listener who’s early on in their networking career.
  • Fact of the week16 HSRP groups only on a Cisco Catalyst 6500 with Sup 2 engines.
  • So what about getting your CCNP with no networking experience?  Realistic or overshooting?
  • How do you pick an IOS?  We talk through SafeHarbor, Dan pontificates about only getting the features you need, and we point out MD vs. ED vs. whatever else in Cisco’s various release trains.
  • Want to contribute some audio to the show, maybe a question or a comment?  Record some and send it along as an attachment.  If the quality isn’t horrible, we’ll see if we can patch it in.


Follow the Packet Pushers on Twitter (@packetpushers | Greg @etherealmind | Dan@rovingengineer | Ethan @ecbanks) and send your queries and comments about the show to [email protected].  We want to hear from you!

Ethan Banks
Ethan Banks, CCIE #20655, has been managing networks for higher ed, government, financials and high tech since 1995. Ethan co-hosts the Packet Pushers Podcast, which has seen over 3M downloads and reaches over 10K listeners. With whatever time is left, Ethan writes for fun & profit, studies for certifications, and enjoys science fiction. @ecbanks
Ethan Banks
Ethan Banks
  • dude

    Great episode! I see that Dan managed to squeeze in FCoTR again. I propose a new drinking game… every time Dan mentions FCoTR on the podcast, everyone chugs a beer.

  • Michael McNamara

    I was listening to (and enjoying) your podcast and thought I'd make some comments.

    With respect to using pass-thru network interconnects in a blade enclosure, it's just not feasible with all the cabling. I've used all four interconnects in an HP Blade enclosure; the pass-thru, the HP GbE2, the Cisco 3120, and the HP Virtual Connect Flex1/10. We use the HP GbE2 and Cisco 3120 in our non-VM environments and we use the HP Virtual Connect Flex1/10 in our VM environments. We're also utilizing the Nexus1000V with the HP Virtual Connect Flex10 with great success. I'll be the first to admit that the VC Flex10 isn't the greatest product in the world, but it fits our current needs and we're hopefully that it will mature and HP will address it's shortcomings.

    With respect to optical networking… here in the states you'll find that a lot of organizations are now running their own dark fiber (really leasing dark fiber because you generally can't run it yourself) between their facilities, so long as the facilities are within 50kM or each other although I believe longer distances might be possible with repeaters.

    Question for your world class experts, "What have they done recently with data center extensions?"

    There are a lot of different options out there but I'm curious what experience (good/bad/fail) has anyone had with either Cisco or Avaya/Nortel. The old role of an active/standby Data Center is really no longer an option for a lot of enterprises (especially health care). We're now being challenged to provide active/active Data Centers that are geographically disperse. Granted there will always be applications that just don't work in a geographically disperse configuration but as more and more applications fall into a VM environment it becomes much easier to provide active/active Data Centers given the network/SAN availability.

    Thanks as always for the podcast!