Archive for February, 2011

ASA 8.4 – first look

February 4, 2011 3 comments

Just under a year since the last major ASA version, Cisco released a new version: 8.4(x)

While this version came earlier than I would expect, there are some exciting new features, some of them definitely worth upgrading for. I have no intention telling the full story (or chewing the release notes for you ;)) but I do want to go over some of the features and the new commands they bring to the world:

EtherChannel support – up to 48 802.3ad EtherChannels of eight active interfaces each
new commands: channel-group, lacp port-priority, interface port-channel, lacp max-bundle, port-channel min-bundle, port-channel load-balance, lacp system-priority, clear lacp counters, show lacp, show port-channel.

Show Top CPU Processes – You can now monitor the processes that run on the CPU to obtain information related to the percentage of the CPU used by any given process.
new command: show process cpu-usage sorted

TCP Ping Enhancement – you can specify a source IP address and a port and source interface to send pings to a hostname or an IPv4 address
new command: command: ping tcp

Stateful Failover with Dynamic Routing Protocols – Routes that are learned through dynamic routing protocols (such as OSPF and EIGRP) on the active unit are now maintained in a Routing Information Base (RIB) table on the standby unit.
modified command: show failover, show route, show route failover.

Host Scan Package Support – support for the ASA to install or upgrade a Host Scan package and enable or disable Host Scan
new command: csd hostscan image path

These are only few changes that I find exciting and they show Cisco’s commitment to this product. If you’re running ASA (or even an old PIX) in your environment I highly recommend spending the time and reading the release notes. even if you’re not going to upgrade any time soon, it is always good to know what are the available options – you never know when you’ll need it.
If you already upgrade your ASA to 8.4 or even better – upgraded and used one of the new features, we want to hear about it!