A few things must be done before adding a Cisco Catalyst 2960X switch to a Cisco Catalyst 2960S switch stack. I assume you know your way around Cisco IOS, and already have the necessary hardware components.

  1. On the existing stack:
    1. If necessary, upgrade the stack to the latest version of Cisco IOS. Remember to copy the image to the flash disks on each member.
    2. Copy flashX:/config.text to flashX:/config.text.backup as a precaution. E.g.:
      copy flash1:/config.text flash1:/config.text.backup
      copy flash2:/config.text flash2:/config.text.backup
    3. Set the stack priorities of the existing members unless already done. E.g.:
      switch 1 priority 15
      switch 2 priority 14
    4. Provision the arriving stack member.
      switch 3 provision ws-c2960x-48fpd-l
    5. Find out which version of Cisco IOS the stack is running.
      show version
  2. On the arriving switch:
    1. Set the stack module to 10 Gbit/s.
      switch stack port-speed 10
    2. Download to the arriving switch the same version of Cisco IOS as used by the running stack. All switches must use the same stack protocol version. Ensure you download the correct file. c2960s-universalk9-mz.152-2.E7.bin is for 2960S, whereas c2960x-universalk9-mz.152-2.E7.bin is for 2960X.
    3. Set the correct boot path. E.g.:
      boot system switch all flash:/c2960x-universalk9-mz.152-2.E7.bin;flash:/c2960x-universalk9-mz.152-7.E2.bin;flash:/c2960x-universalk9-mz.152-7.E1.bin

      Don’t bother about saving running-config as startup-config. All configuration done so far is stored elsewhere.

    4. Power off the arriving switch.
  3. Prepare the stack cables.
    1. Connect the top switch’s stack port 2 to the next switch’s stack port 1.
    2. Connect the remaining switches in the same fashion as above, stack port 2 to stack port 1.
    3. Connect the bottom switch’s stack port 2 to the top switch’s stack port 1.
    4. If any of the existing members reloaded while you were juggling the stack cables, wait until all existing members are up & running.
  4. Power on the arriving switch.
    1. Observe the magic through the console of the master switch. E.g.:
      show switch detail
      show platform stack manager all
    2. Set the stack priority of the new member. E.g.:
      switch 3 priority 13
  5. Should your 2960X switch ever leave the stack to go work as a standalone switch or go work among other 2960X switches:
    1. Power off the switch.
    2. Disconnect the switch from the stack
    3. Connect to the console port on the switch.
    4. Power on the switch.
    5. Set the stack module to full speed. E.g.:
      no switch stack port-speed 10
    6. Specify a newer Cisco IOS to boot. E.g.:
      boot system switch all flash:/c2960x-universalk9-mz.152-7.E2.bin;flash:/c2960x-universalk9-mz.152-7.E1.bin
    7. Delete existing config.text and vlan.dat. E.g.:
      delete flash:/config.text
      delete flash:/vlan.dat
    8. Power off or reload the switch.

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