Can UbiSwitch support “dynamic VLAN” where a “VMPS server” creates VLAN’s based on a MAC tables?

– Copied from customer email –

Can UbiSwitch support “dynamic VLAN” where a “VMPS server” creates VLAN’s based on a MAC tables?

Yes and no. Based on my understanding, the way this would work is that when a new device is connected to a port on the switch, the switch extracts the MAC address and sends that to the port that is connected to the VMPS server. The VMPS server then checks its database and configures the switch to put that new device on a specific VLAN.

The way an enterprise/data-centre switch would do this is that they probably have inband processor inside the switch that receives a copy of all data coming in. It would filter for new devices connected, extract the MAC address, and then send that through the switch to the VMPS connected port. Of course, if you had, say, 5 x 1Gbps external facing ports on your switch, then that means the inband processor connection to the switch would need to be faster than that (probably around 10Gbps) so it is not overwhelmed by traffic.

UbiSwitch does not have a processor inband with the actual flow of data (data plane). It has a processor that is connected to a serial port and the management plane of the switch chip. However I believe it can still be achieved in the following way.

  1. Connect one of your VMPS server ports to one of the 10G ports (eg Port 0) on UbiSwitch

  2. Connect the VMPS server to the serial port of UbiSwitch (likely through a serial to ethernet converter)

  3. Configure UbiSwitch to make a port mirror of all traffic on the 1G ports, and send this to Port 0.

  4. Configure the VMPS to monitor that 10G port for any new connection requests, then configure the VMPS to extract the MAC address manually.

  5. VMPS server can then check its MAC/VLAN table as in standard dynamic VLAN configurations.

  6. VMPS server will then need to configure UbiSwitch to update its VLAN table based on the new device connector.

So, it’s possible but it’s probably more work than its worth. To do this the “proper” way, you need an UbiSwitch that has a processor in the data plane of the data. We are planning such a product because it would add more functionality and open up the ability to route traffic (layer 3) too, but I think we’re at least 8-9 months off having that project complete.