Cisco Mds Switch Simulator
I am new to cisco nexus switches, learning the Cisco Nexus SAN part for the storage configuration. Just want to know is there any simulator available for Cisco Nexus or MDS switches related to SAN for learning purpose. Please suggest.
Cisco Mds Switch Simulator
The fibre channel switches share the FLOGI database information with each other using FCNS, the Fibre Channel Name Service. Each switch in the network learns where each WWPN is, what its FCID is, and how to route traffic there.
The show FLOGI database command on Cisco switches will only work on the switch where the clients are directly plugged into. The switches share that local information with each other through FCNS. If we do a show FCNS database on a Cisco switch, we will see the FCID and the WWPN of all of the hosts that are in our network. Because the FCID is derived from the Domain ID, which is how we identify our switches, the switches now know how to route traffic to any host in the network.
After the FLOGI Fabric Login process is complete, the initiator will send a Port Login (PLOGI). Based on the zoning configuration on the switch, the host will learn its available target WWPNs on its storage.
In the example below, Server 1 sent a FLOGI and was assigned its FCID. When that process is complete, it will send a PLOGI to its locally attached switch. The switch will check its zoning configuration and allow the server to talk to its storage.
Whether you've been advised by a coworker, supervisor, or a thread on Reddit, everyone has their favorite simulator or emulator. Someone who primarily uses GNS3 will always claim that it's superior to VIRL, and vice-versa.
These are the most popular software for gaining hands-on Cisco lab experience for the routing and switching track certifications. Many of these tools can also be used to test networking technologies for deployment in the real world. However, we will focus as much as possible on the certification exam use case.
A simulator is a piece of software that, as the name implies, simulates a network topology composed of one or more network devices. The network devices being simulated are not real network devices, and are not capable of passing live network traffic the same way that a real network device could. Instead, each network device is a piece of software pretending to be a real network device to the best of its ability.
As a result, network devices within a simulator are limited to the commands and features programmed into the simulation. For this reason, many advanced features (such as DMVPN, Policy Based Routing, and so on) that real network devices are capable of are not present in simulated counterparts.
The key benefit of simulators is that they tend to be extremely lightweight. Simulator software can run on just about any modern computer without worrying about processor, memory, or storage requirements.
Packet Tracer is Cisco's visual simulation tool that simulates network topologies comprised of Cisco routers, switches, firewalls, and more. Packet Tracer was originally designed as an educational aid for Cisco's Networking Academy (better known as NetAcad) but is an excellent simulator for anyone pursuing an entry-level Cisco certification, such as the CCENT or CCNA R&S.
Making a Realistic Lab. Packet Tracer offers different methods to connect and configure devices. Most of the time, you'll probably left-click on each device in the simulator and configure it through the CLI tab. However, you can also simulate how network engineers would provision devices in the real world. You can accomplish this by connecting a computer to each device via console cable and then configuring the network device through the PC's terminal. You can even use this to configure remote management of the network device through Telnet or SSH, then connect the PC to a management network and configure each device remotely.
Bugs. All software has bugs, and Packet Tracer is no exception. Packet Tracer's bugs tend to be more prominent than other simulators or emulators, perhaps due to its popularity and widespread use through Cisco's NetAcad courses. A quick Google search shows users repeatedly report odd bugs where the configuration of a device is correct, but the behavior of the device is unexpected. These bugs are typically fixed by saving the simulation file, then reloading Packet Tracer, after which the device is behaving as expected. This is a problem because you may spend precious time troubleshooting rather than labbing.
Cisco's Packet Tracer remains the gold standard in virtual network simulators. For free software, it offers a feature-rich sandbox environment for experimenting with a large number of network device types, platforms, and connections. Furthermore, Packet Tracer's simulation of Cisco's IOS software exhibits the closest behavior to actual network devices, and its built-in terminal client is very similar to the real thing.
Boson is an IT training organization well-known for their high-quality Cisco certification exam coursework and challenging practice exams. Another key product of Boson's is NetSim, an application that simulates Cisco network routers and switches.
Less clicking than Packet Tracer. The "Recent Devices" feature in NetSim is much more intuitive and user-friendly than Packet Tracer's equivalent. In Packet Tracer, you must place a device in your network topology, manually power off the device by clicking on the power switch, drag the desired network module to the desired slot, then manually power on the device by clicking on the power switch. Furthermore, this process needs to be repeated for each device that needs its physical configuration modified. If you need to test a topology in Packet Tracer with eight routers using serial interfaces, modifying each device results in a lot of clicking.
Lack of Topology Customization. Unlike most other network simulators and emulators, NetSim does not have a way to add colorized shapes to a network topology. Aside from network devices and connections, you can only add text-based notes and labels to the topology. This is a fairly minor point, but is important when rehearsing some exam topics, such as multiarea OSPF, where colored shapes illustrating the different areas comes in very useful.
Cannot Modify Active Topology. Once a network topology is running, you can't modify it until you stop the topology, which shuts down the simulated network devices. If you need to add a new network device or a new connection to your network topology, you must stop the entire topology, modify it as needed, then start the topology once more. This behavior is very similar to current versions of Cisco's VIRL. This is a minor point, as the topology itself starts and stops very quickly, but the less time you spend managing simulator, the better!
The software's weakness is in the creation, manipulation, and interaction of network topologies in the sandbox environment. It is more difficult to create aesthetically-pleasing network topologies in NetSim compared to other network simulators and emulators. An active network topology does not provide very much visual feedback regarding the status of devices, links, and transmission of data. NetSim's simulated Cisco IOS software has small quirks not exhibited by actual Cisco IOS software, particularly when using context-sensitive help or executing non-existent commands, which is a common mistake that many networking novices make.
An emulator is a piece of software that runs and connects virtual network devices together. Emulators virtualize real network devices, and virtual network devices tend to offer a more advanced feature set compared to network devices present in simulators. The behavior exhibited by virtual network devices is more representative of how real physical network devices would behave in the real world.
However, there are tradeoffs between simulators and emulators. Emulators tend to be limited in the types of virtual network devices that they support, as well as how those virtual devices can connect to each other. Furthermore, depending upon the specific software used, you will need to locate a binary image file of the virtual network device that you would like to emulate, as well as the appropriate licensing. These resources are typically acquired through a support contract with a networking vendor.
Finally, because emulators are virtualizing real network devices, their system requirements demand much more processing power, memory, and storage space compared to network simulators. In fact, some network emulators require a separate server (virtualized or otherwise) to be deployed in order to function!
If Cisco's Packet Tracer is the gold standard in virtual network simulators, then GNS3 is the gold standard in virtual network emulators. GNS3's mature, open-source community has created a feature-rich, well-documented piece of software that is completely free. Despite following a traditional server/client application model, the server component is easy to deploy, configure, and maintain.
EVE-NG (Emulated Virtual Environment Next Generation) is a multi-vendor virtual network simulator that, similar to VIRL Personal Edition, was developed for individuals and smaller businesses. They offer a free Community Edition as well as a Professional Edition for $110.75 per year.
The Cisco MDS 9000 family, resold by IBM, is designed to provide amultiprotocol-capable, one to two Gbps Fibre Channel SAN infrastructurewith performance and advanced intelligence to help address demands forthe security, performance, and manageability features required toconsolidate geographically dispersed SANs. Designed to be fullyinteroperable with other