On 7/12/10, Chan Chung Hang Christopher <christopher.chan at bradbury.edu.hk> wrote: > You only really need STP when you have switches that are connected > together in such a way as to have multiple paths. For the setup you > first posted, you could just have two physically separate networks. That > does leave the question of what solution to use to get the boxes to use > the other switch if the primary one goes down. So if you connect both > networks to make say a big 'circular' network, then you need STP. I think I must had made a mistake in my setup example because the multipath thing seems to be what I had in mind. i.e. all machines have at least 2 paths to the others so as long as one switch is alive, functionality remains. A more complete network diagram WAN Managed Switch/Router -> connects to Internet, for external connectivity Internal (for networked storage) Switch 1 (primary, 1Gbps dumb switch) -> connects to WAN Switch -> connects to Machine 1,2,3...X eth0 Switch 2 (backup, 100Mbps dumb switch) -> connects to WAN Switch -> connects to Machine 1,2,3...X eth1 Possibly a Switch 3 in the future if more data nodes are added than the primary have ports. Idea being that the dumb switches are used solely for local data transfer between up to X number of App servers and storage nodes. The managed switch then handles only external communications as well as any firewalling. Would connect bond0 to both switches still work without STP in this kind of a setup, or is this when STP comes in? Or is there a better network topology, given that I don't have the budget for awsome HP ProCurves ;) Reusing existing router/switch (DLink DFL-800) and dumb Gb switches.