Cisco ONS 15454 Series Multiservice Provisioning Platforms

Field Notice 16351: TCC/TCC+ Invalid MAC Address Issue

January 28, 2002

Products Affected


Top Assembly

Part Number









Problem Description

Each Cisco ONS 15454 node must have a unique, valid Media Access Control (MAC) address for proper circuit creation and routing. In rare instances, the Cisco ONS 15454 TCC/TCC+ card may misread the MAC address from the Auxiliary Interface Protection (AIP) card.

Depending on the software release, you may see one of several different MAC addresses that indicate a MAC read failure has occurred:

Cisco Transport Controller (CTC) versions prior to version 3.1

  • 00-00-00-00-00-00

  • 00-10-cf-ff-ff-ff

  • 31-32-33-34-35-36

CTC version 3.1 and later

  • 00-10-cf-ff-ff-ff

These values indicate that a MAC address read failure may have occurred.

Where this issue has been seen, traffic loss on existing circuits may occur. Losses occur most commonly during software upgrades, TCC/TCC+ and XC/XCVT side-switches, or by incorrect procedures while attempting to correct the incomplete circuit condition.


The TCC/TCC+ card reads the MAC address from an EEPROM on the AIP board on the 15454 chassis, usually during system initialization. Noise comprised of environmental-specific factors as well as noise signatures from the individual chassis and card configuration of the node may cause adverse affects. Excessive noise on the TCC/TCC+ card can cause the read to fail, which in turn can cause the system to use one of the MAC addresses listed above.

Problem Symptoms

By itself, a single node running on an invalid MAC address is not necessarily a traffic affecting problem. However, an invalid MAC address can cause some undesirable issues. The condition should be corrected as soon as possible, and especially prior to performing any circuit modifications, additions, or deletions.

A node running on an invalid MAC address can cause networking problems if the invalid address is a duplicate of another address on the same subnet. Address Resolution Protocol (ARP) storms can create excessive LAN traffic due to duplicate MAC addresses. In addition, ethernet switches can be adversely affected (ports taken out of service) and packets can be incorrectly routed.

In the CTC, an invalid MAC address can cause circuits to show as "INCOMPLETE" even though all nodes along the path are fully visible. The Circuit Source and Destination may be missing from the Circuits tab. Alternatively, the Circuit Source and Destination may have "Unknown" in place of the expected node name. In the tab, the MAC address reports an erroneous value as listed above. Once again, this alone will not necessarily cause traffic loss but extreme care must be exercised while attempting to correct the problem.


Manufacturing has implemented corrective action for the TCC/TCC+ cards that replaces the pull-down resistors to dampen the noise affecting the EEPROM reads. All TCC/TCC+ boards manufactured and shipped after September 6, 2001 (TCC) or March 15, 2001 (TCC+), include this modification and are not affected by this issue. If any of the above symptoms are observed, please contact the Technical Assistance Center as outlined below for troubleshooting and any necessary replacement.

How To Identify Hardware Levels

Verify the current MAC address of the Cisco ONS 15454 node. For software versions 2.1.x, 2.2.x, and 3.x.x, use the following procedure.

  1. Open CTC.

  2. From the Shelf View, select Provisioning > Network.

  3. Verify the MAC address. If the MAC Address is 00-10-cf-ff-ff-ff, 31-32-33-34-35-36 or 00-00-00-00-00-00, contact the Technical Assistance Center to schedule a hardware replacement and on-site Field Service Support.


    For software version 2.0.x, please contact the Technical Assistance Center if you experience any of the Problem Symptoms listed above or prior to any Software Upgrade.

For More Information

If you require further assistance, or if you have any further questions regarding this field notice, please contact the Cisco Systems Technical Assistance Center (TAC) by one of the following methods:

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