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The RHEL 5 documentation is good about bonding pairs of ports in various ways.

The Oracle team where I work want to get more complex than that. They want an active bonded pair, with a third interface ready as a passive backup.

Has anyone tried bonding at this level of complexity?

I thought about trying to layer bonding configurations. Could I configure bondeth0 as an active pair combining eth0 and eth2, and then create a bondeth1 with bondeth0 as active and eth1 as passive?


  • eth0 + eth2 = bondeth0, configured as an active pair.
  • bondeth0 + eth1 = bondeth1, configured for active/passive.

Has anyone ever tried that?

EDIT: Here's a more comprehensive description. These are two hosts in an Oracle 11g RAC/RDBMS cluster. eth0 is the unrouted management connection between the two hosts. eth1 and eth3 go from each host to its corresponding switch. eth2 goes from the host to the opposite host's switch. This way, no single networking failure takes down a host. Here's a rough drawing:

 __________ eth1           ____________
 | Host 1 |================| Switch 1 |
 |________| eth3           |__________|
eth2 |   |                      |
     |   |                      |
     |    \-eth0--------eth0-   |
     |                       \  |
     |                       |  | eth2
 ____________         eth3 __|_______
 | Switch 2 |==============| Host 2 |
 |__________|         eth1 |________|

I don't need to worry about eth0; it's working just fine. The RHEL Documentation covers the basics of bonding well. Many examples of bonding are available. I've even found a great description of the six bonding modes.

What I need to know is how to combine two modes across three ports.

Thanks! dafydd

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You appear to be configuring this for enterprise purposes, this question is probably more appropriate for ServerFault. You seem to be doing your research and are capable of describing your problem well, so you'd be more than welcome over there. –  suprjami Nov 17 at 22:14

1 Answer 1

You cannot do this, as you cannot bond bonds.

What you should do is configure a Mode 4 bond to each switch, and use ad_select=bandwidth or ad_select=count bonding option.

Each bond will negotiate a separate Aggregator ID, and only one Aggregator can be used at a time, so all traffic to and from a given Linux system will go via one switch.

If one slave goes down, traffic moves to the other switch.

If one switch goes down, traffic moves to the other switch.

If both switches go down, you have bigger problems than your Oracle cluster.

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