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Managing Oracle Solaris 11.1 Network Performance     Oracle Solaris 11.1 Information Library
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Document Information


1.  Introduction to Network Performance Management

2.  Using Link Aggregations

3.  Working With VLANs

4.  Administering Bridged Networks (Tasks)

5.  Introduction to IPMP

6.  Administering IPMP (Tasks)

7.  Exchanging Network Connectivity Information With LLDP

8.  Working With Data Center Bridging Features in Oracle Solaris

9.  Edge Virtual Bridging in Oracle Solaris

10.  Integrated Load Balancer (Overview)

11.  Configuring Integrated Load Balancer

12.  Managing Integrated Load Balancer

13.  Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol (Overview)

A.  Link Aggregation Types: Feature Comparison

B.  Link Aggregations and IPMP: Feature Comparison


Appendix B

Link Aggregations and IPMP: Feature Comparison

IPMP and link aggregation are different technologies that achieve improved network performance as well as maintain network availability.

The following table presents a general comparison between link aggregation and IPMP.

Link Aggregation
Network technology type
Layer 3 (IP layer)
Layer 2 (link layer)
Configuration tool
Link-based failure detection
Probe-based failure detection
ICMP-based, targeting any defined system in the same IP subnet as test addresses, across multiple levels of intervening Layer 2 switches
Based on LACP, targeting the immediate peer host or switch

Not supported in DLMP aggregations.

Use of standby interfaces
Not supported in trunk aggregations

Supported in DLMP aggregations

Span multiple switches
Not supported in trunk aggregations. Some vendors provide proprietary and non-interoperable solutions to span multiple switches.

Supported in DLMP aggregations

Hardware support
Not required
Required for trunk aggregations. For example, a trunk aggregation on an Oracle Solaris system requires that corresponding ports on the switches also be aggregated.

Not required in DLMP aggregations

Link layer requirements
Driver framework requirements
Must use GLDv3 framework
Load-spreading support
Supported, controlled by the kernel. Inbound load spreading is indirectly affected by source address selection.
Supported in trunk aggregations only, and controlled by the administrator by using the dladm command. Inbound load spreading is supported.

Load spreading by individual interfaces over the aggregation is not supported in DLMP aggregations.

Level of support when integrating with VNICs
Poor support
Excellent support
User defined flows for resource management
Not supported
Link protection
Not supported
Protocol requirements

In link aggregations, incoming traffic is spread over the multiple links that comprise the aggregation in standard mode. Thus, networking performance is enhanced as more NICs are installed to add links to the aggregation.

DLMP aggregations span multiple switches. As a Layer 2 technology, aggregations integrate well with other Oracle Solaris virtualization technologies.

IPMP's traffic uses the IPMP interface's data addresses as they are bound to the available active interfaces. If, for example, all the data traffic is flowing between only two IP addresses but not necessarily over the same connection, then adding more NICs will not improve performance with IPMP because only two IP addresses remain usable.

Trunk aggregations and IPMP can complement each other and can be deployed together to provide the combined benefits of network performance and availability.