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Cornell University

Server Farm Networks

This article applies to: Managed Servers

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The Server Farm's collection of networks spans both Rhodes Hall and the CCC data center annex and uses one router.

Each Server Farm network uses the Rhodes Hall router to connect to:

  • Server Farm networks
  • Other campus networks
  • The Internet

Internet Connections

Server Farm networks have redundant router paths to the campus backbone. The campus backbone network also has redundant connections to the Internet. This means that if one Internet connection goes down, traffic is automatically directed off campus through the other connection.

Network Switches

The Server Farm has three tiers of network switches:

  • Tier 1 and Tier 2: Virtually identical, except for maintenance schedules. Tiers 1 and 2 are used for normal networking among servers, the campus, or the Internet. Tier 1 is the default. Almost all servers are connected to it. Some networks span Tier 1 and Tier 2 switches. From the network protocol view, those networks are identical.
  • Tier 3: Used for networking between server clusters within the Server Farm or for other special networking needs. Tier 3 switches are not connected to the campus or the outside world.

Switch Maintenance

During switch maintenance, tiers are worked on one by one. As the work is completed on a tier, service is restored against that tier before the work on the next tier is begun.

Network Routers

The Server Farm has redundant router capabilities. If a router fails, network engineers will restore connectivity as soon as possible. If necessary, networks will be redirected through the other router.

Network Router Maintenance

Currently, when maintenance is required, the router will be unavailable. In this case, network connectivity to the entire server farm is lost until the router is available again.


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