Brocade SAN switch CLI Commands for troubleshooting minor issues

We have already discussed about, Brocade SAN switch Zoning steps Via CLI and CISCO MDS Zoning steps via CLI

This write-up, focuses on the basic trouble shooting commands used in Brocade SAN switch. For better understanding of the commands, let us first understand the day to day operational challenges faced in the SAN fabric. Listed below are few of the operational error codes/prompts:

  1. Alias/port went offline
  2. Bottlenecks
  3. Port error
  4. Hanging zones
  5. Rx Tx Voltage/Power Issue

let’s read in brief about, how to identify the errors and how to troubleshoot them. Read more

Alias/port went offline

This error is recorded due to the following reasons:

  1. Reboot/ Shutdown of the host
  2. Faulty cable
  3. Issue in the HBA card.

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Thus, when ‘WWN/ Alias went offline’ is recorded, use the below mentioned commands to identify, when the port went offline and which port went offline.

#fabriclog -s                                                                              States the ports which went offline recently.

#fabriclog -s |grep -E “Port Index |GMT”                               This command states the ports which went offline before. Note: This command will fail in case the FOS upgrade or Switch reboot activity was performed. As both the activities clear the fabriclog.

In order to know the zoning details through the WWN of the device, use below mentioned command:  

#alishow |grep wwn -b2                                                              This lists the alias.

then use below command

#zoneshow –alias Alias_Name                                                    This lists the zone name and component aliases.

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There are many kinds of bottlenecks. But, the once prominent in SAN fabric are Latency bottleneck and congestion bottleneck.

Latency bottleneck occurs when a slow drain device is connected to the port. Even initiator or target ports can report latency, no matter what kind of port it is, if a slow drain device is attached, there will be bottleneck in that port. A

Slow drain devices, is a device which either has all or any one of the bellow mentioned issues:

  1. Unsupported firmware.
  2. Hardware issues.
  3. SFP which has a voltage or power issue.

Whereas, Congestion bottleneck occurs due to high rate of data transfer in the port. In the next write-up we will discuss in detail, about the causes of a congestion bottleneck.

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The commands used to identify latency as well as congestion bottleneck are:


#mapsdb –show

If there is latency or congestion bottleneck, it should to be fixed by logging a support case with Server/Storage hardware vendor.

Port errors

There are many kinds of port errors. Most of the time, its due to bottleneck issue/ physical layer issue. Bottleneck issue we have already addressed above. Physical layer issue is, either Cable issue or SFP issue.

Below are the commands to identify the port errors:

#porterrshow                                                       This will list all ports in error state.

#porterrshow port_number                       

#porterrorshow -i Port_Index                              Both these commands will list the errors in a particular port.

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In case an error is listed, before troubleshooting clear the status using below commands and observe it again.



#portstatsclear port_number

Apart from this, there are other commands to display the current data transfer rate of a port or all ports, such as:


#portperfshow port_number

Hanging Zone

Hanging zones are the purposeless zones residing in the zoning configuration. The zone in which all initiators or all targets are inactive are considered as hanging zone.

There is no specific command to list out hanging zones in the fabric, we have to use SAN health to identify the hanging zone. To check if all the aliases of a zone are active or not use the command mentioned below:

#zonevalidate “zonename

In the result of the above command, there will be have a ‘*’ mark at the end of each active alias in the zone.

Rx Tx Voltage/Power Issue

The Rx & Tx Voltage and power of an SFP can be validated only if, there is connectivity in the SFP with its port in online state.

The command below will display the voltage, power and all the details related to the SFP.

#sfpshow port_number -f


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