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Link Aggregation Control Protocol

Link Aggregation Control Protocol

(also LACP)

Link Aggregation Control Protocol definition

Link Aggregation Control Protocol (LACP) is a technique to bundle several physical network links together. The main goal is to increase speed and provide backup if one link fails.

See also: WAN aggregation, Spanning Tree Protocol

Benefits of Link Aggregation Control Protocol

  • Increased bandwidth. By combining several links, LACP increases the overall bandwidth between two connected devices.
  • Redundancy. If one link fails, LACP ensures that its traffic moves to the remaining operational links within the bundle.
  • Automatic configuration. LACP can establish combined links between devices automatically, reducing manual setup.
  • Load balancing. It distributes network traffic across all the available paths, optimizing resource use.
  • Interoperability. Part of the IEEE 802.3ad standard, LACP is compatible with different brands of network hardware.

Use cases of Link Aggregation Control Protocol

  • Data centers. Data centers have huge data transfer requirements. LACP helps them combine links, increasing the bandwidth between switches, routers, and servers.
  • High-availability environments. Downtime is costly in critical sectors like healthcare or banking. LACP ensures data is always available, even if a connection fails.
  • Large enterprise networks. For businesses with large data traffic, like media companies, LACP helps balance the load across links. That ensures smooth data flow.
  • Server connections. Servers with many network interface cards (NICs) use LACP to bundle the connections for better performance.
  • Storage area networks (SANs). LACP increases bandwidth and redundancy between storage devices and the network. That ensures fast, continuous access to stored data.

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