High Availability (HA) is an essential requirement for any enterprise network. To achieve this, Cisco developed Hot Standby Router Protocol (HSRP), which enables automatic failover between two or more routers. HSRP works by allowing one device to act as the primary or active router, while the other device remains in a standby or backup state.
One of the critical factors in achieving redundancy and failover with HSRP is configuring the priority of the routers. In this article, we’ll provide a technical guide on how to configure HSRP priority on Cisco devices.
Understanding HSRP Priority on Cisco Devices
HSRP priority is a numeric value assigned to each router participating in the HSRP group. The router with the highest priority value becomes the active router, while the router with the second-highest priority value becomes the standby router.
The priority value can range from 0 to 255, with 100 as the default value. Administrators can adjust the priority value manually to achieve specific redundancy and failover scenarios.
The Role of Priority in Achieving Redundancy and Failover
The primary role of HSRP priority is to determine which router becomes the active router. When multiple routers are participating in an HSRP group, the router with the highest priority value becomes the active router, while the other routers become standby routers.
If the active router fails, the router with the next highest priority takes over as the active router. The active router maintains the virtual IP address, which is the address used by clients to access the network.
The standby router monitors the active router and takes over if it fails. The standby router will become the active router if the priority value is higher than the other standby routers.
How to Set the Priority for High Availability
To configure HSRP priority on Cisco devices, follow these steps:
- Enter global configuration mode:
Router# configure terminal
- Enter the interface VLAN configuration mode:
Router(config)# interface vlan
- Set the HSRP priority:
Router(config-if)# standby priority
For example, to set the priority to 150, enter the following command:
Router(config-if)# standby priority 150
- Save the configuration:
Router# copy running-config startup-config
Configuring HSRP priority on Cisco devices is essential for achieving high availability and redundancy in enterprise networks. By setting the priority value, administrators can determine which router becomes the active router and which router becomes the standby router.
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