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Cisco ASA 5515X & Cisco Nexus 3K Switch

Nathan Brock
Level 1
Level 1



I am working on configuring a topography with 1 Cisco ASA 5516X Firewall configured with a Nexus 3K Switch (Core Switch). 

I am looking for a recommend best practices topographical design. 


Things I need to consider:


1) We have another integrated services router that handles are Cisco Unity Services for VOIP. This is a different gateway and network then our data network.

2) We will have multiple vlans / Point to Point connections to multiple branch offices. Some of these connections are layer 2 with AT&T and others are Site-To-Site IPSec. 

3) Should the ASA be configured in routed and transparent mode.

4) Are there any pairing commands for the ASA and Nexus to share a routing table or arp table?

5) We also have a 5508 WLC with 25 APs. 


I am hoping to enable the Nexus to the majority of all routing and inter-vlan routing with access policies. 


What would everyone recommend.







1 Reply 1

Hello Nate,


a few thoughts: the ASA in transparent mode does not terminate VPN tunnels, so for your site to site IPSec connections alone, you would need routed mode.

For your inter-Vlan routing, the Nexus 3K is probably the much better choice in terms of throughput.

I would use the ASA just for Internet-bound traffic, and the N3K for 'local' traffic.

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