Best practices for Cloud Interconnect

Use the following best practices when planning for and configuring Cloud Interconnect.

Working with Google Cloud projects

If your network architecture supports it, configure your Cloud Interconnect projects as recommended in this section.

Provision physical Interconnect connections in a separate project

Provision physical Interconnect connections (ports) for Cloud Interconnect in one project, but provision VLAN attachments in other projects. The other projects must be in the same Google Cloud organization as the project that contains the physical connections.

VLAN attachments that connect a physical connection to a region through a Cloud Router don't have to be in the same project as the physical connection. For more information, see Using Dedicated Interconnect connections in other projects.

This practice makes the following configuration steps easier:

  • You can associate a separate internal billing account with the project that contains the physical connections.
  • You can configure Identity and Access Management (IAM) roles and permissions in the project that contains the physical connections.
  • If you want to delete or update a resource that is not a physical connection, you can do so without affecting the physical connections.

Configure VLAN attachments in the Shared VPC host project

In a Shared VPC network, configure all VLAN attachments, not physical Interconnect connections (ports), in the host project. For more information about connecting attachments to Shared VPC networks, see Enabling multiple VPC networks to access the same VLAN attachment.

Creating redundant Interconnect connections with sufficient capacity

This section describes best practices for creating redundant Interconnect connections that have sufficient capacity in a failover scenario. Following these practices ensures that events such as planned maintenance or hardware failures do not cause downtime.

You can create Interconnect connections according to either of these recommended topologies:

When creating Interconnect connections according to these topologies, you create pairs of connections in one or more metropolitan areas. Within a single metropolitan area, you place Interconnect connections in different edge availability domains.

Ensure sufficient capacity in each edge availability domain

If there is downtime or maintenance in one of the edge availability domains in a metropolitan area, traffic fails over to the other edge availability domain.

To avoid packet loss if a single edge availability domain fails, follow this guidance:

Type of capacity Guidance
Interconnect connection capacity Ensure that each edge availability domain has enough connection capacity to carry all your production traffic.
VLAN attachment capacity

Ensure that each edge availability domain has enough VLAN attachment capacity to carry all the production traffic for the target VPC network.

VPC traffic on Interconnect connections is carried over VLAN attachments, which link the Interconnect connection to VPC networks. Even if each edge availability domain has enough connection capacity, it must also have enough VLAN attachment capacity.

VLAN attachment capacity and multiple VPC networks

If you are using your Interconnect connections to access more than one Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) network, create VLAN attachments from each VPC network to each Interconnect connection. For each VPC network, ensure that there is enough VLAN attachment capacity to carry all the production traffic for that VPC network if a failover occurs.

Consider an example in which you have the following VPC networks and workloads:

  • vpc-1 receives 2 Gbps of total traffic from your on-premises network.
  • vpc-2 also receives 2 Gbps of total traffic from your on-premises network.

The following table describes the minimum amount of attachment capacity that you need in each edge availability domain for each VPC network:

Edge availability domain Connection capacity Attachment capacity
sea-zone1-86 1 x 10 Gbps 2 x 1 Gbps to vpc-1
2 x 1 Gbps to vpc-2
sea-zone2-86 1 x 10 Gbps 2 x 1 Gbps to vpc-1
2 x 1 Gbps to vpc-2

When you add VLAN attachments over an Interconnect connection, your configured attachment capacity might exceed the total capacity of the connection. Although this configuration is valid, your actual traffic cannot exceed the total capacity of the connection. Ensure that your workload does not generate more traffic than the capacity of the connection.

Use active/active VLAN attachments

There are two ways to configure redundant VLAN attachments:

  • An active/active configuration that splits traffic between the VLAN attachments.
  • An active/passive configuration that uses only one VLAN attachment at a time.

Google recommends that you use an active/active configuration because it makes it easy to determine whether all VLAN attachments are working correctly during normal operation. When using an active/active configuration, monitor your usage patterns to ensure that you have sufficient capacity if a failure occurs.

In an active/passive configuration, VLAN attachments might be configured incorrectly without your realizing it. If you do use this configuration, ensure that you test failover before adding production traffic.

Understand failover between regions

Network traffic leaving a region prefers to use the path with the lowest metric, as described in Effects of dynamic routing mode in the Cloud Router overview. In typical usage, this means that egress traffic leaves through the closest Google Cloud region that has any live VLAN attachments, with the local region being the closest.

Consider an example in which you build the topology for production-level applications, and you have a VPC network with the following:

  • VLAN attachments in two regions
  • Global dynamic routing enabled

Traffic prefers to egress the VLAN attachments in the local region, even if the attachments in that region are overloaded. The traffic only flows to the other region if all the VLAN attachments in the local region are down. This means that each of the four Interconnect connections in the topology must have enough VLAN attachment capacity to carry all your production traffic.

Scenarios

This section describes scenarios in which you configure Cloud Interconnect resources. It also describes how each configuration handles your workload during normal operation and failover. Each scenario includes a recommendation related to the best practices for redundancy and capacity.

Scenario 1: Sufficient capacity

In this scenario, you provision two Dedicated Interconnect connections in two different edge availability domains as shown in the following table:

Edge availability domain Connection capacity Attachment capacity Attachment region
sea-zone1-86 1 x 10 Gbps 1 x 10 Gbps us-west1
sea-zone2-86 1 x 10 Gbps 1 x 10 Gbps us-west1

The following table describes how this configuration handles your workload during normal operation and failover:

Resource Description
Size of your workload 10 Gbps of total traffic between us-west1 and your on-premises network.
Capacity during normal operation

Sufficient capacity

20 Gbps of capacity from us-west1 to your on-premises network. Your 10-Gbps workload runs successfully.

Capacity during failover

Sufficient capacity if either Interconnect connection goes down.

For example, if the connection in sea-zone1-86 fails, your available capacity is the connection in sea-zone2-86. This single Interconnect connection has 10 Gbps of capacity. The 10 Gbps of attachment capacity that you created on it is enough to carry your production workload.

If your workload increases to more than 10 Gbps of traffic, it exceeds the capacity of your attachment, and you might experience packet loss.

Recommendation Provision your Interconnect connection and VLAN attachment capacity such that each edge availability domain has enough capacity for all your production workload.

Scenario 2: Insufficient capacity during failover

In this scenario, you provision two Dedicated Interconnect connections in two different edge availability domains as shown in the following table:

Edge availability domain Connection capacity Attachment capacity Attachment region
sea-zone1-86 1 x 100 Gbps 100 Gbps (2 x 50 Gbps) us-west1
sea-zone2-86 1 x 100 Gbps 100 Gbps (2 x 50 Gbps) us-west1

The following table describes how this configuration handles your workload during normal operation and failover:

Resource Description
Size of your workload 150 Gbps of total traffic between us-west1 and your on-premises network.
Capacity during normal operation

Sufficient capacity

200 Gbps of capacity from us-west1 to your on-premises network. Your 150-Gbps workload runs successfully.

Capacity during failover

Insufficient capacity if either Interconnect connection goes down.

If one of your Interconnect connections goes down for maintenance, your entire 150-Gbps workload attempts to fail over to a single 100-Gbps connection. This is more than the capacity of the connection, so you experience congestion and packet loss.

Recommendation To ensure full availability during a failure event, make sure that the combined traffic over each connection doesn't exceed the total capacity of a single edge availability domain. In this scenario, you need at least 200 Gbps of connection capacity and 3 x 50 Gbps of attachment capacity in each edge availability domain to have sufficient capacity during failover.

Scenario 3: Imbalanced VLAN attachments

In this scenario, you provision two Dedicated Interconnect connections in two different edge availability domains as shown in the following table. You initially provision 1 x 10 Gbps of attachment capacity in sea-zone1-86. Later, you realize that your workload has grown to 20 Gbps, so you update only the attachment capacity in sea-zone1-86 to 2 x 10 Gbps.

Edge availability domain Connection capacity Attachment capacity Attachment region
sea-zone1-86 1 x 100 Gbps 1 x 10 Gbps (initially provisioned)
2 x 10 Gbps (updated later)
us-west1
sea-zone2-86 1 x 100 Gbps 1 x 10 Gbps us-west1

The following table describes how this configuration handles your workload during normal operation and failover:

Resource Description
Size of workload 20 Gbps of total traffic between us-west1 and your on-premises network.
Capacity during normal operation

Sufficient capacity

30 Gbps of capacity from us-west1 to your on-premises network. Your 20-Gbps workload runs successfully.

Capacity during failover

Sufficient capacity if the Interconnect connection in sea-zone2-86 goes down.
Insufficient capacity if the Interconnect connection in sea-zone1-86 goes down.

If your Interconnect connection in sea-zone2-86 goes down, there is still 20 Gbps of attachment capacity from the remaining connection, and your workload runs successfully.

However, if your Interconnect connection in sea-zone1-86 goes down, there is only 10 Gbps of attachment capacity from the remaining connection, and you experience congestion and packet loss.

Recommendation Make sure that you have equal capacity to both edge availability domains in a metropolitan area; this applies to both Interconnect connections and VLAN attachments. In this scenario, you need at least 2 x 10 Gbps of attachment capacity in each edge availability domain to ensure sufficient capacity if either Interconnect connection goes down.

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