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Local Area High Speed Networks by Dr. Sidnie Feit

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Locally Administered MAC Addresses

When universally administered addresses are used on a LAN, the MAC addresses look like random jumbles of hex characters. Some LAN administrators prefer to reconfigure each adapter at installation time and assign addresses that have a local interpretation. For example, each address could be split into fields that identify the building, floor, wiring closet, and specific office in which the system has been installed. Knowing the location of a malfunctioning card is helpful when troubleshooting LAN problems.

The IEEE numbering architecture takes this preference into account. A bit in the first address byte is equal to 0 in all universally administered addresses and must be 1 for locally administered addresses. ...

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