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An unexpected memory consumption in the CEF IPC Background process in a Catalyst 3750 switch stack


Core issue

This problem is observed in these conditions:

  • When switches are stacked
  • When IP routing is disabled
  • When the master switch is changed
    This can be due to a master failure, a change in master priority, or a reload.

This slow, constant memory leak happens in the Cisco Express Forwarding (CEF) IPC Background in function fib_memory_alloc_named_internal. This happens only if IP routing is disabled.


The workaround for this problem is to enable IP routing with the use of the ip routing global configuration command, and to reload the switch stack.

This issue is documented in Cisco bug ID CSCsc59027.

This issue is resolved in these Cisco IOS  software releases, which can be downloaded from Cisco Downloads. Upgrade to any of these releases for a permanent workaround:

  • Cisco IOS Software Release 12.2(35)SE
  • Cisco IOS Software Release 12.2(37.2)S
  • Cisco IOS Software Release 12.2(25)SEE02
  • Cisco IOS Software Release 12.2(32.08.19)SRB
  • Cisco IOS Software Release 12.2(25)SEG01
  • Cisco IOS Software Release 12.2(32.08.11)SX28

Refer to Troubleshooting Memory Problems for more information.