Cisco internetwork design by Matthew H Birkner

By Matthew H Birkner

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When using tunneling, pay attention to the media over which virtual tunnel traffic passes and the metrics used by each protocol. If a network has sites that use protocol-based packet filters as part of a firewall security scheme, be aware that because tunnels encapsulate unchecked passenger protocols, you must establish filtering on the firewall router so that only authorized tunnels are allowed to pass. If tunnels are accepted from unsecured networks, it is a good idea to establish filtering at the tunnel destination or to place the tunnel destination outside the secure area of your network so that the current firewall scheme will remain secure.

Layer 2 switching does not look inside a packet for network-layer information as does Layer 3 switching. Layer 2 switching is performed by looking at a destination MAC address within a frame. It looks at the frame's destination address and sends it to the appropriate interface if it knows the destination address location. Layer 2 switching builds and maintains a switching table that keeps track of which MAC addresses belong to each port or interface. If the Layer 2 switch does not know where to send the frame, it broadcasts the frame out all its ports to the network to learn the correct destination.

The distribution layer can be summarized as the layer that provides policy-based connectivity. Function of the Access Layer The access layer is the point at which local end users are allowed into the network. This layer may also use access lists or filters to further optimize the needs of a particular set of users. In the campus environment, access-layer functions can include the following: ● Shared bandwidth ● Switched bandwidth ● MAC layer filtering ● Microsegmentation In the non-campus environment, the access layer can give remote sites access to the corporate network via some wide-area technology, such as Frame Relay, ISDN, or leased lines.

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