$DayJob we make use of Dell S4048-ON Switches for 10G Top-of-Rack (ToR) switching and also
sometimes 10G Aggregation/Core for smaller deployments. They’re fairly flexible devices with a high number of
10G ports, some 40Gs and they can do L3 ports and L2 ports. You can also run them either Stacked or in VLT mode
for redundancy purposes.
In addition these things use ONIE (Open Network Install Environment) and can run different firmware images - though we almost exclusively run these with DNOS 9 which is the Force10 FTOS code that Dell acquired some time ago rather than DNOS 10.
One evening, I was tasked with an “emergency” build request. We had some kit being shipped to a remote PoP the following day and the intended routers were delayed, so we needed to get something quickly and temporarily in place to take a BGP Transit Feed and deliver VRRP to the rest of the kit. A spare S4048 we had lying around would do the job sufficiently for the time period needed. I figured it wouldn’t take too long to get the base config needed and get it ready to be shipped with the rest of the kit.
So I got the Datacenter to rack/cable/console it so that I could begin configuration then set aside some time in the evening to do the work.
As I was watching the switch boot up I noticed something odd. Turns out the last engineer who had used this device had chosen to install the OpenSwitch OPX ONIE firmware on it instead of the usual DNOS9 firmware. So much for my quick and easy config.
At this point, I could have just reloaded the device into the ONIE installer environment and installed DNOS9 and been done with it all. But, I had a fairly open evening, and I’d not yet really played about much with any of the alternative ONIE OSes, so armed with my Yak Sheers, I thought I’d have a look around.
(After all this, I then re-imaged the device onto our standard deployment image of DNOS9 and completed the required config work that I was supposed to be doing.)