Hi. I try to understand the L3 switching issues on the Catalyst range switches. As I already know MLS was the mechanism of the L3 switching on the older sort of Catalysts (5000/6500MSFC1). But the MLS has evolved to the CEF switching. I know CEF from the routers point of view, but what about L3 switches? How to relate CEF switching to the MSFC, PFC and SUP? What about to MLS and CEF working the same time on e.g. 6500? Are they mutually exclusive or they work together in some manner? In what manner? Could someone explain the issue?

Thx, Aleksander, CNNA.

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I am not fully up to speed on all platforms now and this is quite frankly mostly guesswork however how else can it be?

On 4500 SE IV (and others) it does L3 routing with hardware CEF (I call it). If you understand the router's CEF then you are there. It is just faster, i.e. zillions of packets per second. Whether it is CEF or not is irrelevant, it just routes.

For someone who has been around since a 7500 did at most 250k pps. The numbers now are just rediculous, only 10 years ago a 7000 did only a few 10's of K pps.

New 6500's will be like this too I imaging but the old ones "with MSFC" did MLS.

It is all very confusing and I don't supopse that this will help much.

There are some quite good articles on CCO.

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