Patent Number: 8,576,853

Title: Two-layer switch apparatus avoiding first layer inter-switch traffic in steering packets through the apparatus

Abstract: Link-level data communications implemented in switching apparatus comprising modular switches disposed within a modular computer cabinet that includes modular computer systems; the switching apparatus configured as two layers of switches, the first layer switches coupled to one another for communications by inter-switch links, each second layer switch coupled for communications to the modular computer systems; all the switches stacked by a stacking protocol that shares administrative configuration information among the switches through the inter-switch links and presents all the switches as a single logical switch; the switching apparatus including ports coupling the apparatus to networks and to service applications and terminating applications on the modular computer systems; and sending the packet from network to modular computer system to which the packet is directed, or from modular computer system to network to which the packet is directed, the packet traversing none of the inter-switch links among the first layer switches.

Inventors: Belanger; Matthew T. (Holly Springs, NC), Shippy; Gary R (Cary, NC)

Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation

International Classification: H04L 12/28 (20060101)

Expiration Date: 1/05/12017