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Smart ZPHA does not pass traffic

    • Updated:
    • 26 Sep 2017
    • Product/Version:
    • TippingPoint IPS N-series All
    • Platform:
Summary

Symptoms:

When a new sZPHA is first unpacked and inserted into it's parent device and connected to a pair of link partners, the sZPHA may not pass traffic from one device to the other until it is properly initialized.

Details
Public

Resolution:

To initialize the sZPHA, install it in its parent device, power on and boot the parent device. Once the parent device has booted fully, the sZPHA module should perform as expected when set to normal or bypass mode.

Explanation:

The sZPHA Module is an electromechanical module that has sensitive optical latching components to open and close the light prisms based on whether the module is in bypass or normal mode.  There is a Super Capacitor (CAP) that sits within this module, that when fully charged, provides enough power to reposition the prisms for bypass operation when external power loss occurs.  The Super CAP contains approximately 4 days of charge when shipped from TippingPoint. 

If fully discharged (which can happen due to long international logistics shipping and handling times) and there is any normal expected shock or vibration of components during shipment and handling, the latching mechanism can be dislodged which causes prism misalignment and subsequent failure/dropped traffic. 

To mitigate the risk of this occurring, all Core Controllers and N-Platform IPSs should first be powered on with the sZPHA Modules installed.  This will properly re-charge the Super CAPs and move the latching components back to their respective proper starting positions.  If this is not done, there is a 50% chance that units first tested in a power-off position will exhibit failure (packet dropping) behavior.

Premium
Internal
Rating:
Category:
Troubleshoot; Deploy
Solution Id:
TP000090869
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