Spanning tree melt down ?

Stephen J. Wilcox steve at
Wed Nov 27 16:06:13 UTC 2002

Sure, which is why

"Within a few hours, Cisco Systems, the hospital's network provider, was loading
thousands of pounds of network equipment onto an airplane in California, bound "

seems somewhat excessive! :)


"The crisis began on a Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 13, and lasted nearly four

sounds like an opportunity for any consultants on nanog who have half a clue
about how to setup a LAN!


On Wed, 27 Nov 2002, Joe Abley wrote:

> On Wednesday, Nov 27, 2002, at 10:25 Canada/Eastern, Stephen J. Wilcox 
> wrote:
> > Hmm, well until the comment about STP it sounded like the guy did 
> > something
> > stupid on a program/database on a mainframe..
> >
> > I cant see how STP could do this or require that level of DR. Perhaps 
> > its just
> > the scapegoat for the Doc's mistake which he didnt want to admit!
> If it's anything like any other layer-2 IT network meltdown I've seen, 
> it'll be some combination of:
>   + no documentation on what the network looks like, apart from a large
>     yellow autocad diagram which was stapled to the wall in the basement
>     wiring closet in 1988
>   + a scarcity of diagnostic tools, and no knowledge of how to use the
>     ones that do exist
>   + complete ignorance of what traffic flows when the network is not
>     broken
>   + a cable management standard that was first broken in 1988 and has
>     only been used since to pad out RFPs
>   + consideration to network design which does not extend beyond the
>     reassuring knowledge that the sales guy who sold you the hardware
>     is a good guy, and will look after you
>   + random unauthorised insertion of hubs and switches into the fabric
>     by users who got fed up of waiting eight months to get another
>     ethernet port installed in their lab
>   + customers who have been trained by its vendors to believe that
>     certification is more important than experience
>   + customers who believe in the cost benefit of a large distributed
>     layer-2 network over a large distributed (largely self-documenting)
>     layer-3 network.
> Just another day at the office.
> Joe

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