Cisco Nexus 7000 Series Switches

Nexus 7000 F2 Module ELAM Procedure

Document ID: 116647

Updated: Oct 22, 2013

Contributed by Andrew Gossett, Cisco TAC Engineer.



This document describes the steps used in order to perform an ELAM on a Cisco Nexus 7000 (N7K) F2 module, explains the most relevant outputs, and describes how to interpret the results.

Tip: Refer to the ELAM Overview document for an overview on ELAM.


In this example, a host on VLAN 10 ( with MAC address 0050.56a1.1a01), port Eth6/4 sends an Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) request to a host that is also on VLAN 10 ( with MAC address 0050.56a1.1aef), port Eth6/3. ELAM is used in order to capture this single frame from to It is important to remember that ELAM allows you to capture only a single frame.

In order to perform an ELAM on the N7K, you must first connect to the appropriate module (this requires the network-admin privilege):

N7K# attach module 6
Attaching to module 6 ...
To exit type 'exit', to abort type '$.'

Determine the Ingress Forwarding Engine

Traffic is expected to ingress the switch on port Eth6/4. When you check the modules in the system, you see that Module 6 is an F2 module. It is important to remember that the N7K is fully-distributed, and that the modules, not the supervisor, make the forwarding decisions for dataplane traffic.

N7K# show module 6
Mod  Ports  Module-Type                 Model              Status
---  -----  --------------------------- ------------------ -------
6    48     1/10 Gbps Ethernet Module   N7K-F248XP-25E     ok

For F2 modules, perform the ELAM on the Layer 2 (L2) Forwarding Engine (FE) with internal codename Clipper. Note that the L2 FE Data Bus (DBUS) contains the original header information before the L2 and Layer 3 (L3) lookups, and the Result Bus (RBUS) contains the results after both L3 and L2 lookups.

The N7K F2 has 12 FEs per module, so you must determine the Clipper ASIC that is used for the FE on port Eth6/4. Enter this command in order to verify:

module-6# show hardware internal dev-port-map 
CARD_TYPE:         48 port 10G
>Front Panel ports:48
Device name             Dev role              Abbr num_inst:
> Clipper FWD            DEV_LAYER_2_LOOKUP     L2LKP 12
+----------------+++FRONT PANEL PORT TO ASIC INSTANCE MAP+++------------+
   3       0       0       0       0       0       0      
   4       0       0       0       0       0       0  

In the output, you can see that port Eth6/4 is on Clipper (L2LKP) instance 0

module-6# elam asic clipper instance 0
module-6(clipper-elam)# layer2

Configure the Trigger

The Clipper ASIC supports ELAM triggers for multiple frame types. The ELAM trigger must align with the frame type. If the frame is an IPv4 frame, then the trigger must also be IPv4. An IPv4 frame is not captured with an other trigger. The same logic applies to IPv6. 

The Clipper ASIC supports these frame types:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# trigger dbus ?
  arp    ARP Frame Format
  fc     Fc hdr Frame Format
  ipv4   IPV4 Frame Format
  ipv6   IPV6 Frame Format
  other  L2 hdr Frame Format
  pup    PUP Frame Format
  rarp   Rarp hdr Frame Format
  valid  On valid packet

With Nexus Operating Systems (NX-OS), you can use the question mark character in order to separate the ELAM trigger. There are several options available for ELAM on the F2 module:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# trigger dbus ipv4 ingress if ?
  destination-ipv4-address         destination ipv4 address
  destination-mac-address          Inner destination mac address
  source-index                     Source index
  source-ipv4-address              source ipv4 address
  source-mac-address               Inner source mac address
  vlan                             Vlan

For this example, the frame is captured based on the source and destination IPv4 addresses, so only those values are specified.

Clipper requires that triggers are set for the DBUS and the RBUS. This differs from M-Series modules, because there is no requirement that you must specify a Packet Buffer (PB) instance. This simplifies the RBUS trigger.

Here is the DBUS trigger:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# trigger dbus ipv4 ingress if source-ipv4-address destination-ipv4-address

Here is the RBUS trigger:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# trigger rbus ingress if trig 

Start the Capture

Now that the ingress FE is selected and you configured the trigger, you can start the capture:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# start

In order to check the status of the ELAM, enter the status command:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# status
ELAM instance 0: L2 DBUS Configuration: trigger dbus ipv4 ingress if
  source-ipv4-address destination-ipv4-address

L2 DBUS Armed
ELAM instance 0: L2 RBUS Configuration: trigger rbus ingress if trig
L2 RBUS Armed

Once the frame that matches the trigger is received by the FE, the ELAM status shows as Triggered:

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# status
ELAM instance 0: L2 DBUS Configuration: trigger dbus ipv4 ingress if
  source-ipv4-address destination-ipv4-address

L2 DBUS Triggered
ELAM instance 0: L2 RBUS Configuration: trigger rbus ingress if trig
L2 RBUS Triggered

Interpret the Results

In order to display the ELAM results, enter the show dbus and show rbus commands. Here is the excerpt from the ELAM data that is most relevant to this example (some output is omitted):

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)# show dbus
                       L2 DBUS CONTENT - IPV4 PACKET                
vlan                : 0xa             destination-index   : 0x0          
source-index        : 0x3             bundle-port         : 0x0  
sequence-number     : 0x3f            vl                  : 0x0
destination-mac-address: 0050.56a1.1aef
source-mac-address: 0050.56a1.1a01

module-6(clipper-l2-elam)#  show rbus
                       L2 RBUS INGRESS CONTENT                             
l2-rbus-trigger     : 0x1             sequence-number     : 0x3f          
di-ltl-index        : 0x2             l3-multicast-di     : 0x0          
source-index        : 0x3             vlan-id             : 0xa

With the DBUS data, you can verify that the frame is received on VLAN 10 (vlan: 0xa) with a source MAC address of 0050.56a1.1a01 and a destination MAC address of 0050.56a1.1aef. You can also see that this is an IPv4 frame that is sourced from, and is destined to

Tip: There are several other useful fields that are not included in this output, such as Type of Service (TOS) value, IP flags, IP length, and L2 frame length.

In order to verify on which port the frame is received, enter the SRC_INDEX command (the source Local Target Logic (LTL)). Enter this command in order to map an LTL to a port or group of ports for the N7K:

N7K# show system internal pixm info ltl 0x3
Type            LTL
PHY_PORT       Eth6/4

The output shows that a source-index of 0x3 maps to port Eth6/4. This confirms that the frame is received on port Eth6/4.

With the RBUS data, you can verify that the frame is switched on VLAN 10 (vlan-id: 0xa). Additionally, you can confirm the egress port from the di-ltl-index (destination LTL):

N7K# show system internal pixm info ltl 0x2
Type            LTL
PHY_PORT       Eth6/3

The output shows that a di-ltl-index of 0x2 maps to port Eth6/3. This confirms that the frame is switched from port Eth6/3.

Additional Verification

In order to verify how the switch allocates the LTL pool, enter the show system internal pixm info ltl-region command. The output from this command is useful in order to understand the purpose of an LTL if it is not matched to a physical port. A good example of this is a Drop LTL:

N7K# show system internal pixm info ltl 0x11a0
0x11a0 is not configured

N7K# show system internal pixm info ltl-region
LTL POOL TYPE                          SIZE        RANGE
DCE/FC Pool                            1024       0x0000 to 0x03ff
SUP Inband LTL                           32       0x0400 to 0x041f
MD Flood LTL                              1       0x0420
Central R/W                               1       0x0421
UCAST Pool                             1536       0x0422 to 0x0a21
PC Pool                                1720       0x0a22 to 0x10d9
LC CPU Pool                              32       0x1152 to 0x1171
EARL Pool                                72       0x10da to 0x1121
SPAN Pool                                48       0x1122 to 0x1151
UCAST VDC Use Pool                       16       0x1172 to 0x1181
UCAST Generic Pool                       30       0x1182 to 0x119f
LISP Pool                                 4       0x1198 to 0x119b
Invalid SI                                1       0x119c to 0x119c
ESPAN SI                                  1       0x119d to 0x119d
Recirc SI                                 1       0x119e to 0x119e
Drop DI                                   2       0x119f to 0x11a0
UCAST (L3_SVI_SI) Region                 31       0x11a1 to 0x11bf
UCAST (Fex/GPC/SVI-ES)       3648       0x11c0 to 0x1fff
UCAST Reserved for Future Use Region   2048       0x2000 to 0x27ff
======================> UCAST MCAST BOUNDARY <======================
VDC OMF Pool                             32       0x2800 to 0x281f
Updated: Oct 22, 2013
Document ID: 116647