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Configure Trunking Between Cisco Catalyst 2960 Switches

This tutorial also applies to other Cisco switches. The Cisco Catalyst 2960 is a layer 2 switch, perhaps one of the most commonly used switches I see in the field. Trunking is a solution for connecting two switches at layer 2, trunking even allows for VLANs in both switches to communicate.

2960 Topology

For this tutorial I will create a trunk between two Cisco Catalyst 2960 switches. My Catalyst 2960 come with two gigabit uplink ports, I will use one port on each switch to establish the trunk. By default all VLANs will be able to traverse the trunk(this includes VLAN 1).

SWITCH-A Trunk Configuration

SWITCH-A# configure terminal
SWITCH-A(config)# interface gigabitEthernet 1/1
SWITCH-A(config-if)# description trunk link
SWITCH-A(config-if)# switchport mode trunk
SWITCH-A(config-if)# switchport nonegotiate

Command explanation:

  • switchport mode trunk – Configure interface for trunking mode
  • switchport nonegotiate – Since the interface was manually configure for trunking there is no need to negotiate

SWITCH-B Trunk Configuration

SWITCH-B configuration steps are identical to SWITCH-A.

SWITCH-B# configure terminal
SWITCH-B(config)# interface gigabitEthernet 1/1
SWITCH-B(config-if)# description trunk link
SWITCH-B(config-if)# switchport mode trunk
SWITCH-B(config-if)# switchport nonegotiate


By trunking two switches together the amount of available ports can be increased. The interfaces linking the two switches may be come bottle necks if the switches send more traffic than either the Fast Ethernet or Gigabit Ethernet port used for the trunk can handle, to increase bandwidth between the switches consider adding EtherChannel to the trunk link.

Feel free to leave a comment below, who knows I maybe able to provide some extra assistance.


  1. Commented on
    Comment by michaelwink

    This can also be handy to avoid contant error messages about flapping when doing load balancing across multiple switches

  2. Commented on
    Comment by q8

    thanks for your explanation, but can this be done without using VLAN?

    I mean I want to increase the ports of the network by adding another switch, if I use this, will it add extra ports to my network?

    1. Commented on
      Comment by luis ventura

      Yes, by default the configuration should allow all traffic between the switches and yes it will add extra ports to your network.

  3. Commented on
    Comment by Nebojsa Mijatovic

    hello, I have tried trunk between Cisco 2950 and Cisco 2960, but there is no command “switchport nonegotiate” on 2950, so could you please help me, thanks in advance

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