Switch port Analyzer (SPAN) is an efficient, high performance traffic monitoring system. It duplicated network traffic to one or more monitor interfaces as it transverse the switch. SPAN is used for troubleshooting connectivity issues and calculating network utilization and performance, among many others. There are three types of SPANs supported on Cisco products, which are illustrated in below diagram.
Types of SPAN
Local SPAN: Mirrors traffic from one or more interface on the switch to one or more interfaces on the same switch.
Remote SPAN (RSPAN): An extension of SPAN called remote SPAN or RSPAN. RSPAN allows you to monitor traffic from source ports distributed over multiple switches, which means that you can centralize your network capture devices. RSPAN works by mirroring the traffic from the source ports of an RSPAN session onto a VLAN that is dedicated for the RSPAN session. This VLAN is then trunked to other switches, allowing the RSPAN session traffic to be transported across multiple switches. On the switch that contains the destination port for the session, traffic from the RSPAN session VLAN is simply mirrored out the destination port.
Encapsulated remote SPAN (ERSPAN): encapsulated Remote SPAN (ERSPAN), as the name says, brings generic routing encapsulation (GRE) for all captured traffic and allows it to be extended across Layer 3 domains.
ERSPAN is a Cisco proprietary feature and is available only to Catalyst 6500, 7600, Nexus, and ASR 1000 platforms to date. The ASR 1000 supports ERSPAN source (monitoring) only on Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, and port-channel interfaces.
Configuring Local SPAN: Local SPAN configures using “monitor session”command specifying source and destination on the same switch.
(to be continued)