Manual Chapter : Platform Overview

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Manual Chapter

Platform Overview

About the platform

The
VELOS
CX Series
platform is a chassis and blade form factor, designed to meet the needs of large enterprise networking environments that requires the ability to process a large volume of application workloads. The hot-swappable blades provide you with the ability to add, remove, or change the platform's configuration to best fit your network. Many other components are available for you to add, remove, or change including the system controllers, power supply controller, fan tray, LCD bezel, and more. This configuration allows for an extremely robust and flexible system that can manage large amounts of application traffic, and remain operational even if one of its components goes offline.
The
VELOS
chassis supports either AC or DC power as a pre-installed factory option. The power supply units (PSUs) are hot swappable, but you can use only AC
/HVDC
PSUs in an AC-powered chassis and DC PSUs in a DC-powered chassis. You cannot mix AC
/HVDC
and DC PSU types in a chassis.
The chassis and blades ship in separate boxes. The system controllers ship inside the chassis. The blades are not designed to be shipped inside a chassis.

VELOS hardware components

VELOS platforms include three main types of hardware components:
  • Chassis, which houses the blades, system controllers, and other components.
  • System controllers, which provide a unified point for external management and connectivity to the platform and applications running in the chassis. The system controllers also provide a command-line interface (CLI), a webUI, and a REST API.
  • Blades, which handle traffic management capabilities, including disaggregation, packet classification, traffic-steering, and more.

VELOS software components

VELOS platforms include a new platform layer known as F5OS, which is a combination of the system controllers and chassis partitions.
For more information about installing and upgrading F5OS on your VELOS system, see
VELOS Systems: Software Installation and Upgrade
at support.f5.com/csp/knowledge-center/software/F5OS. For more information about administering and configuring your VELOS system, see
VELOS Systems: Administration and Configuration
at support.f5.com/csp/knowledge-center/software/F5OS.

About the chassis

The chassis is the housing unit that contains all of the components necessary for the
VELOS
CX Series
platform to operate effectively.
The
VELOS
CX410 chassis and BX110 Series blades are available in DC-powered Network Equipment-Building System (NEBS) compliant versions. For a system to be completely NEBS-compliant, you must use all NEBS-compliant blades.
Front view of a VELOS CX410 chassis with removable LCD bezel attached
  1. LCD module LEDs (Status and Alarm)
  2. LCD touchscreen
  3. Blades (or Blanks) 1-4
  4. System controller 1
  5. System controller 2
  6. Blades (or Blanks) 4-8
The back of the AC-powered chassis includes four AC power receptacles.
Back view of the AC chassis
  1. Power supply controller 1
  2. Power supply controller 2
  3. Power supply receptacles (1-4)
  4. Chassis ground terminals
  5. Fan tray
The back of the DC-powered chassis includes four DC power block terminals.
Back view of the DC chassis
  1. Power supply controller 1
  2. Power supply controller 2
  3. DC power block terminals (1-4)
  4. Chassis ground terminals
  5. Fan tray

About the system controller

The system controllers provide a high bandwidth interconnect between blades, as well as external management connectivity.
A system controller must be installed in each system controller slot to provide maximum system bandwidth and to provide redundancy.
You can use only SX410 Series system controllers in a
VELOS
CX410 Series
chassis.
A jack screw, a type of captive screw, is used to secure the system controller in to the chassis and remove it from the chassis.
Front view of the SX410 Series system controller
  1. System controller indicator LEDs
  2. Management port
  3. Console port
  4. USB port
  5. Jack screw

About the blades

A blade is the primary component that handles the traffic management within the
VELOS
platform. During initial setup of the chassis, an administrator can group blades into chassis partitions (this is different from TMOS admin partitions). Chassis partitions are a grouping of blades that are completely isolated from other blades/chassis partitions in the system. A blade can belong only to one chassis partition at a time.
For the
VELOS
CX410 Series
chassis, a chassis partition can contain up to eight
BX110 Series
blades.
The system comes preconfigured so that all blades are assigned to a default chassis partition.
The chassis includes blanks in the slots where blades are not installed. Blanks must be installed in all unused slots, as they help ensure proper airflow within the chassis and EMI compliance of the unit.
Front view of the BX110 Series blade
  1. Latch release
  2. Ejector handle
  3. Blade indicator LEDs
  4. USB port (disabled by default)
  5. QSFP28 ports (2)

About the chassis terminal service

With VELOS chassis, blades do not have physical console ports. Each system controller has a physical console port. The system controllers in the chassis provide a terminal service that enables authorized users to access blade consoles over SSH using the chassis floating address.
At a high level, these user roles have terminal service access:
Admin
Users with this role can access any terminals in the chassis.
Terminal server admin
Operator
Users with this role can access any terminals in the chassis.
Partition
Users with this role are not given access to any terminals in the chassis.
Since the chassis terminal service uses SSHD, clients can connect using SSH. The terminal service uses a range of network port numbers to differentiate between connections being requested to the various consoles in the chassis.
You can also access any blade console by selecting the desired blade using the Always-On Management (AOM) Command Menu after you connect a serial cable to either of the system controllers' console ports. For more information about AOM, see the section entitled
About Always-On Management
in the platform guide for your VELOS chassis
.

Console port numbers

The
VELOS
chassis terminal service uses a range of network port numbers to differentiate between connections being requested to either the blade or system controller consoles in a chassis.
Console
Port number
System controller 1
7100
System controller 2
7200
Blade <1...x>
700x

Connect to a blade or system controller using the chassis terminal service

If you are an authorized user, you can connect to a blade or system controller using the chassis terminal service.
  1. Connect using SSH to the blade or system controller that you want to access.
    ssh <blade_or_sys_controller_ip_address> -l admin -p <port_number>
    This example opens an SSH session as an admin user to the blade in slot 1:
    ssh 192.0.2.10 -1 admin -p 7001
    This example opens an SSH session as an admin user to the system controller in slot 2:
    ssh 192.0.2.10 -1 admin -p 7200
    If there is not already an active terminal session attached to the specified console, you are connected immediately. If there is already an active terminal session attached, you can choose to terminate the existing terminal session and replace it.
When you complete your terminal session to a blade or a system controller, you can terminate your session by typing the
Enter ~ .
(tilde period) command sequence.

About LCD menus

The LCD touchscreen includes a Health menu, which enables you to run LCD tests.

Health menu

You can use the Health menu to run LCD tests.
Option
Description
Run LCD Tests
Performs tests for the logo ball test and system LEDs.

About platform LEDs

The behavior of the various LEDs on the platform indicate the status of the system or component.

System controller Status LED

The Status LED indicates the operating state of the system controller.
State
Description
off/none
System controller is powered down.
green solid
System is running in normal mode.
yellow/amber solid
Host is not functional.
yellow/amber blinking
AOM is not functional.

System controller Alarm LED

The Alarm LED indicates the current alert status for a system controller.
There are five levels of messages.
State
Description
off/none
No active alarms.
yellow/amber solid
Warning. System may not be operating properly, but the condition is not severe or potentially damaging.
yellow/amber blinking
Error. System is not operating properly, but the condition is not severe or potentially damaging.
red solid
Critical. System is not operating properly, and the condition is potentially damaging.
red blinking
Emergency. System is not operating, and the condition is potentially damaging.

System controller Active LED

The Active LED indicates the activity state of the system controller.
State
Description
off/none
The system controller is unpowered, has failed, or is not active.
green solid
The system controller is active and primary.

Blade Status LED

The Status LED indicates the operating state of a blade.
State
Description
off/none
Blade is not powered.
green solid
Blade is fully functional.
yellow/amber solid
Host CPU is not functional.
yellow/amber blinking
AOM is not functional.
blue blinking
Blade locator function is enabled.

Blade Alarm LED

The Alarm LED indicates the current alert status for a blade.
There are five levels of messages.
State
Description
off/none
No active alarms.
yellow/amber solid
Warning. System may not be operating properly, but the condition is not severe or potentially damaging.
yellow/amber blinking
Error. System is not operating properly, but the condition is not severe or potentially damaging.
red solid
Critical. System is not operating properly, and the condition is potentially damaging.
red blinking
Emergency. System is not operating, and the condition is potentially damaging.

LCD module Status LED

The Status LED indicates the operating state of the chassis infrastructure.
State
Description
off/none
The chassis is completely unpowered, or the LCD module has failed.
green solid
LCD module is operational, and no chassis infrastructure faults are present.
yellow/amber solid
LCD module is in the process of booting its application code and is not yet operational or a chassis infrastructure fault is present. Examples of chassis infrastructure components include: system controller, PSU, fan tray, etc.
yellow/amber blinking
LCD module has lost communication to the platform for more than one minute.

LCD Module Alarm LED

The Alarm LED indicates the current alert status for the system. There are five levels of messages.
State
Description
off/none
No active alarms, the platform is completely unpowered, or the LCD module has failed.
yellow/amber solid
Warning. System may not be operating properly, but the condition is not severe or potentially damaging.
yellow/amber blinking
Error. System is not operating properly, but the condition is not severe or potentially damaging.
red solid
Critical. System is not operating properly, and the condition is potentially damaging.
red blinking
Emergency. System is not operating, and the condition is potentially damaging.

Logo ball LED

The F5 logo ball LED indicates whether the system is powered on and if the chassis locator function is enabled.
There are three status levels.
State
Description
on
System is powered on.
blinking
Chassis locator function is enabled.
Off
System is completely powered off.

Fan Controller Status LED

The Status LED indicates the operating state of the fan tray.
State
Description
off/none
The system is not powered, or a system fault prevents the fan controller status LED from being driven properly.
yellow/amber solid
Fan controller is in initial power up, or the fan controller is not reachable.
yellow/amber blinking
Fan controller is in bootloader mode.
green solid
Fan controller is initialized and functioning properly.

Power supply unit (PSU) controller LEDs

The LEDs on the power supply unit (PSU) controller indicate the status of the controller..
LED behavior
PSU controller status
off/none
System is not powered or a system fault prevents the PSU controller status LED from being driven properly.
yellow/amber solid
PSU controller is in initial power up or the PSU controller is not reachable.
yellow/amber blinking
PSU controller is in bootloader mode.
green solid
PSU controller is initialized and functioning properly.

AC
/HVDC
power supply unit LEDs

The LEDs located on the AC
/HVDC
power supply units (PSUs) indicate the operating state of the supplies.
Input LED
Output LED
Condition
green solid
green solid
Normal operation
off
off
Fault: Input UV, Input OV, VSB SC
off
yellow/amber solid
Not valid
green solid
yellow/amber solid
Warning: VSB OC
Fault: Fan, OTP, OC, VOUT OV/UV
green solid
yellow/amber blinking
Warning: FAN, OTP, OC, VOUT OV/UV
green blinking
yellow/amber solid
Fault: Input OV
green blinking
yellow/amber blinking
Warning: Input OV, Input UV
green blinking
off
Not valid
green solid
green blinking
PS_ON_L is high
green solid
off
PS_KILL PSU not inserted
OV - Over Voltage; OTP - Over Temperature Protection; UV - Under Voltage; OC - Over Current; VSB - Standby Voltage

DC power supply LEDs

The LEDs located on the DC power supplies indicate the operating state of the power supplies
Input LED
Output/Fault LED
Condition (PUB-0342-01 and later)
green solid
green solid
Normal operation
off
off
Fault: Input UV
off
yellow/amber solid
Not valid
green solid
yellow/amber solid
Fault: Fan, OTP, OC, VOUT OV/UV, VSB OV/UV
green solid
yellow/amber blinking
Warning: FAN, OTP, OC, VOUT OV/UV, VSB OV/UV
green blinking
yellow/amber solid
Fault: Input OV
green blinking
yellow/amber blinking
Warning: Input OV/UV
green blinking
off
Not valid
green solid
green blinking
PS_ON_L is high
green solid
off
PS_KILL PSU not inserted
OV - Over Voltage; OTP - Over Temperature Protection; UV - Under Voltage; OC - Over Current; VSB - Standby Voltage

About platform interfaces

VELOS
Series platforms include multiple interfaces on the system controllers and the blades. You can enable or disable front panel management interfaces on the system controllers. You can also configure settings or properties on 100GbE interfaces on blades, such as enabling or disabling the interface, configuring port speed, Ethernet flow control, and more.

About the system controller front panel management port

VELOS
system controllers include a 10GbE front panel management port. You refer to the front panel management port using the name <
slot_number
>/mgmt0 where <
slot_number
> is the designated slot number of the system controller within the chassis. The front panel management ports are enabled by default.
Both system controller management ports are capable of functioning in either Redundant or Aggregated mode:
Redundant Mode
Only the Active system controller's management port forwards traffic. The management port on the standby will show an Admin state and operational state of UP, but will not forward management traffic; it remains a standby. Redundant Mode is the default.
Aggregated Mode
The management ports of both system controllers function as a single 802.3ad aggregated port. The system controller supports two modes of aggregation: STATIC and LACP.
You should use LACP aggregation whenever possible, as LACP aggregation management is superior to STATIC aggregation management.

System controller management port settings

These command sequences define configurable settings for a system controller front panel management port. To access the command line interface (CLI), connect using SSH to the system controller floating management IP address. When you log in to the system, you are in user mode, so you must first change to config mode by typing
config
. You can type a question mark (
?
) or press the Tab key to see possible command completions in the CLI.
Be sure to commit all changes.
Task
Command
Result
Enable management port
interfaces interface <
system_controller_slot
>/mgmt0 config enable
The system controller management port shows an operational state of UP.
Disable management port
interfaces interface <
system_controller_slot
>/mgmt0 config disable
The system controller management port shows an operational state of DOWN.
Create management port aggregation
interfaces interface <
aggregation_name
> config type ieee8023adLag name <
aggregation_name
>
Both system controller management ports operate in aggregated mode, acting as a single 20Gbps 802.3ad aggregated port. The system controller supports two aggregation modes: STATIC and LACP. Use of LACP is recommended. For more information, see the admin guide.
You can define only one management port aggregation.
Remove an aggregation interface
no interfaces interface <
aggregation_name
>
This removes the specified aggregation interface.
Add management ports to a specified aggregation
interfaces interface 1/<
aggregation_name
> ethernet config aggregate-id mgmt0
interfaces interface 2/<
aggregation_name
> ethernet config aggregate-id mgmt0
These commands add the system controller management ports to the specified aggregation. You must add both management ports to the management port aggregation interface.
You cannot add ports other than the system controller management ports to the management port aggregation.
Disable management port aggregation in STATIC mode
no interfaces interface 1/mgmt0 ethernet config aggregate-id
no interfaces interface 2/mgmt0 ethernet config aggregate-id
These commands remove the system controller management ports from an aggregation.
Enable management port aggregation in STATIC mode
interfaces interface <
aggregation_name
> aggregation config lag-type STATIC
This configures a specified aggregation with STATIC as the aggregation type.
Enable management port aggregation in LACP mode
interfaces interface <
aggregation_name
> aggregation config lag-type LACP
This configures a specified aggregation with STATIC as the aggregation type.

About 100GbE interfaces

On platforms that include 100GbE interface ports, you can use only F5-branded 100GbE QSFP28 transceiver modules in those ports.
When a 100GbE interface operates at either 40GbE and 100GbE speeds, it is considered to be
bundled
.
The 100GbE ports (1.0-4.0) default to 100GbE. The cable that you use when operating at 100GbE with 100GBASE-SR4 transceiver modules is an industry-standard OM4 qualified multi-mode fiber optic cable with female MPO/MTP connectors at both ends. The cable that you use with 100GBASE-LR4 transceiver modules is an industry-standard SMF fiber optic cable with LC duplex connectors and a reach of up to 10km. You must provide your own cable and F5-branded QSFP28 transceiver modules for 100GbE operation.
If you are using a breakout cable for 10GbE connectivity, you should use the supported distance as detailed in the
Specifications for fiber QSFP+ modules
section and not the
Specifications for fiber SFP+ modules
section of the
F5® Platforms: Accessories
guide at
techdocs.f5.com/en-us/hw-platforms/f5-plat-accessories.html
.

100GbE interface port settings

These command sequences define configurable settings for the 100GbE interface ports on VELOS BX Series blades. To access the command line interface (CLI), connect using SSH to the chassis partition IP address. When you log in to the system, you are in user mode. Before you can complete configuration tasks, you must first change to config mode by typing
config
. You can type a question mark (
?
) or press the Tab key to see possible command completions in the CLI.
Be sure to commit all changes.
Task
Command
Example
Show the status of a specified interface
show interfaces interface <
blade_number
/
interface_number
>
Possible completions:
aggregation ethernet state
show interfaces interface 1/1.1
Show the state of all interfaces
show interfaces interface
state
Possible completions:
counters disabled enabled ifindex name oper-status type forward-error-correction mtu
show interfaces interface state forward-error-correction
Show the state of a specified interface
show interfaces interface <
blade_number
/
interface_number
>
state
show interfaces interface 1/1.1 state
Show the interface statistics for all interfaces
show interfaces interface
state
counters
Possible completions:
in-broadcast-pkts in-discards in-errors in-fcs-errors in-multicast-pkts in-octets in-unicast-pkts out-broadcast-pkts out-discards out-errors out-multicast-pkts out-octets out-unicast-pkts
show interfaces interface state counters
Show the current running configuration for all interfaces
show running-config interfaces interface
show running-config interfaces interface
Show the current running configuration of VLAN interface members
show running-config interfaces interface
ethernet
switched-vlan
show interfaces interface ethernet switched-vlan
Reset counters for specified interfaces
reset counters interfaces [ <
blade_number
/
interface_number
> ]
reset counters interfaces 1/1.0 1/2.0
Reset counters for all interfaces
reset counters [
all
|
interfaces
]
reset counters all
Create a LAG interface
interfaces interface <
lag_name
> config
Possible completions:
aggregation config hold-time
interfaces interface new_lag config type ieee802adLag
Create a LAG interface with a specified type
aggregation config lag-type
Possible completions:
LACP static
aggregation config lag-type STATIC
Show the current running configuration of LAG interfaces
show running-config interface <
lag_name
> aggregation
show running-config interface new_lag aggregation
Associate a specified interface with a specified LAG
interfaces interface <
blade_number
/
interface_number
> ethernet config aggregate-id <
lag_name
>
interfaces interface 1/1.0 ethernet config aggregate-id new_lag

About network interface LED behavior

The appearance and behavior of the network interface LEDs on the platform indicate network traffic activity, interface speed, and interface duplexity.

QSFP28 port LED behavior

The appearance and behavior of the QSFP28 port LEDs indicate network traffic activity, interface speed, and interface duplexity.
State
Module
Description
off (not lit)
QSFP+ or QSFP28
No link.
blue solid
QSFP28
Linked at 100GbE (with all four LEDs operating in unison).
blue blinking
QSFP28
Link is actively transmitting or receiving data at 100GbE (with all four LEDs operating in unison).
green solid
QSFP+
Linked at 40GbE when operating as a single 40GbE port (with all four LEDs operating in unison).
green blinking
QSFP+
Link is actively transmitting or receiving data at 40GbE (with all four LEDs operating in unison).
yellow/amber solid
QSFP+
Linked at 10GbE when operating as four 10 GbE ports.
yellow/amber blinking
QSFP+
Link is actively transmitting or receiving data at 10GbE.

About Always-On Management

The Always-On Management (AOM) subsystem on the system controller enables you to manage the system remotely using the serial console, even if a blade is powered down. The AOM Command Menu operates independently of the VELOS host operating system.
When you run the AOM Command Menu, the serial connection to the blade CPU is interrupted for the duration of time that the Command Menu is active.
You can use the command menu to reset the unit if the host has locked up or get access to a blade directly, so that you can configure it from the command-line interface (CLI).
When you access the AOM Command Menu, it displays the
Active console
, which blade's console is currently connected, and the
Physically connected console
, which is how you are physically connected to the system (for example, serial port/console or the management port of one of the system controllers).
In this example, you are connected to the console of the blade in slot 1 and are connected to the serial port of the system controller in slot 1.
Active console : blade 1 Physically connected console : system controller 1 serial port AOM Command Menu: D --- Disconnect blade console I --- Display blade information P --- Power on/off blade R --- Reset blade CPU U --- Front panel USB port Q --- Quit menu and return to console Enter Command:

Access the AOM Command Menu from the serial console

You can access the AOM Command Menu after connecting to the system controller using the front panel serial console.
  1. Connect to the system using the serial console.
  2. Open the AOM Command Menu.
    Esc (
    The AOM Command Menu displays the
    Active Console
    and
    Physically connected console
    .

AOM Command Menu options

The AOM Command Menu provides the AOM options for the platform. You can access the AOM Command Menu using either a serial console or SSH via the chassis terminal service.
The availability of menu options varies depending on the platform type.
Letter
Option
Description
D
Disconnect blade console
Disconnects a previously-established serial console redirection to a blade. This returns the user console to the originating connection—either the system controller AOM if you are connected to the front panel serial port or the system controller's terminal service (if you connected through the system controller's management interface).
I
Display blade information
Displays information about the blade, including:
  • AOM firmware version
  • AOM bootloader version
  • CPLD version
  • Serial number
  • Power status
  • Status LED status
  • Alarm LED status
  • Power on self test status
  • Runtime status
P
Power on/off blade
Powers the blade on or off. Depending on whether there is sufficient power in the chassis to power on the blade, the AOM may be unable to power up the blade.
You can choose to forcibly power on the blade and will have to confirm that you want to power on the blade in this condition. F5 strongly recommends, however, that you install or apply power to additional power supply units (PSUs) in the chassis. Forcibly powering on a blade in this condition might cause a full chassis outage.
R
Reset blade CPU
Resets the blade's CPU.
F5 does not recommend using this option under normal circumstances. It does not allow for graceful shutdown of the system.
U
Front panel USB port
Enables or disables the front panel USB port on a blade.
The front panel USB port on blades are disabled by default.
Q
Quit menu and return to console
Exits the AOM Command Menu and returns to the blade's CPU console.