Network Chatter

Discussion in 'Cisco' started by Stuart Cianos, Dec 7, 2003.

  1. Greetings -

    Hopefully this is not a stupid question... I'm a programmer by profession -
    not a networking engineer!

    We have a network with approx. 4500 Windows NT & 2000 terminals operating
    off a combination of Novell, Windows and Unix servers where I work. We have
    noticed that there is a significant amount of "chatter" on the network in
    the form of broadcasts (ARP traffic, etc.)

    Is there anything we should be implementing on the switches to help mitigate
    this at the site level -- and are there any recommendations for WAN traffic?
    When sniffing out the network, we show that a good 10-15% of the traffic is
    broadcast chatter from the workstations.

    We run Cisco catalyst switches on the backbone - we also run Cisco in the
    wiring closets out at the buildings, but am unsure what model.

    Thank you in advance!

    - Stu
    Stuart Cianos, Dec 7, 2003
    #1
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  2. On Sun, 7 Dec 2003 14:04:04 -0800, Stuart Cianos spoketh

    >Greetings -
    >
    >Hopefully this is not a stupid question... I'm a programmer by profession -
    >not a networking engineer!
    >
    >We have a network with approx. 4500 Windows NT & 2000 terminals operating
    >off a combination of Novell, Windows and Unix servers where I work. We have
    >noticed that there is a significant amount of "chatter" on the network in
    >the form of broadcasts (ARP traffic, etc.)
    >
    >Is there anything we should be implementing on the switches to help mitigate
    >this at the site level -- and are there any recommendations for WAN traffic?
    >When sniffing out the network, we show that a good 10-15% of the traffic is
    >broadcast chatter from the workstations.
    >
    >We run Cisco catalyst switches on the backbone - we also run Cisco in the
    >wiring closets out at the buildings, but am unsure what model.
    >
    >Thank you in advance!
    >
    >- Stu
    >


    Not so much on the switches, other than perhaps using VLANs to contain
    broadcasts in smaller domains.

    If you haven't done so already, consider setting the NetBIOS nodetype to
    Peer-to-Peer, and use WINS servers for NetBIOS name resolutions. That'll
    cut the chatter dramatically. You can set that either on the DHCP server
    or via the registry. If you're running a Windows DHCP server, then it
    would be option "046 WINS/NBT Node Type". Set the value to "2" (P-node),
    but only *after* all Windows clients have been given at least one WINS
    server address.

    Lars M. Hansen
    http://www.hansenonline.net
    (replace 'badnews' with 'news' in e-mail address)
    Lars M. Hansen, Dec 7, 2003
    #2
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  3. Darn it ... The corresponding registry key is
    HKLM\System\CurrentControlset\Services\Netbt\Parameters

    The value name is "nodetype", it's a DWORD, and the value should be set
    to "2".

    See MSKB 160117

    Lars M. Hansen
    http://www.hansenonline.net
    (replace 'badnews' with 'news' in e-mail address)
    Lars M. Hansen, Dec 7, 2003
    #3
  4. Stuart Cianos

    dmcknigh Guest

    Lars M. Hansen <> wrote in message news:<>...
    > Darn it ... The corresponding registry key is
    > HKLM\System\CurrentControlset\Services\Netbt\Parameters
    >
    > The value name is "nodetype", it's a DWORD, and the value should be set
    > to "2".
    >
    > See MSKB 160117
    >
    > Lars M. Hansen
    > http://www.hansenonline.net
    > (replace 'badnews' with 'news' in e-mail address)


    If you haven't already done so, you may also want to consolidate
    Novell IPX to
    using a single frame type (typically 802.2) and disable the "SAP
    Agent" on NT machines where possible (I believe SAP Agent isn't
    installed on 2000 by default). This would significantly reduce
    broadcast utilization due to Service Advertising Protocol (SAP)traffic
    being sent redundantly and containing SAP entries for every NT
    workstation. Hopefully this helps.
    -dmcknigh-
    dmcknigh, Dec 8, 2003
    #4
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