Technical Documentation

Example: Configuring Proxy ARP on an EX Series Switch

You can configure proxy Address Resolution Protocol (ARP) on your EX Series switch to enable the switch to respond to ARP queries for network addresses by offering its own MAC address. With proxy ARP enabled, the switch captures and routes traffic to the intended destination.

This example shows how to configure proxy ARP on an access switch:


This example uses the following hardware and software components:

  • JUNOS Release 10.0 or later for EX Series switches
  • One EX Series switch

Overview and Topology

This example shows the configuration of proxy ARP on an interface of an EX Series switch using restricted mode. In restricted mode, the switch does not proxy for hosts on the same subnet.

The topology for this example consists of one EX Series switch. When a host wants to communicate with a host that is not already in its ARP table, it broadcasts an ARP request for the MAC address of the destination host:

  • When proxy ARP is not enabled, a host that shares the same IP address replies directly to the ARP request, providing its MAC address, and future transmissions are sent directly to the destination host MAC address.
  • When proxy ARP is enabled, the switch responds to ARP requests, providing the switch’s MAC address—even when the destination IP address is the same as the source IP address. Thus, communications must be sent through the switch and then routed through the switch to the appropriate destination.


To configure proxy ARP, perform the following tasks:

CLI Quick Configuration

To quickly configure proxy ARP on an interface, copy the following command and paste it into the switch terminal window:

set interfaces ge-0/0/3 unit 0 proxy-arp restricted

Step-by-Step Procedure

You configure proxy ARP on individual interfaces.

  1. To configure proxy ARP on an interface:

    [edit interfaces]
    user@switch# set ge-0/0/3 unit 0 proxy-arp restricted

    Best Practice: We recommend that you configure proxy ARP in restricted mode. In restricted mode, the switch does not act as proxy if the source and target IP addresses are on the same subnet. If you use unrestricted mode, disable gratuitous ARP requests on the interface to avoid the situation of the switch’s response to a gratuitous ARP request appearing to the host to be an indication of an IP conflict:

    [edit interfaces]
    user@switch# set ge-0/0/3 no-gratuitous-arp-request


Display the results of the configuration:

user@switch> show configuration interfaces {ge-0/0/3 {unit 0 {proxy-arp restricted;family ethernet-switching;}}


To verify that the switch is sending proxy ARP messages, perform these tasks:

Verifying That the Switch Is Sending Proxy ARP Messages


Verify that the switch is sending proxy ARP messages.


List the system statistics for ARP messages:

        198319 datagrams received
        45 ARP requests received
        12 ARP replies received
        2 resolution requests received
        2 unrestricted proxy requests
        0 restricted proxy requests
        0 received proxy requests
        0 proxy requests not proxied
        0 restricted-proxy requests not proxied
        0 with bogus interface
        0 with incorrect length
        0 for non-IP protocol
        0 with unsupported op code
        0 with bad protocol address length
        0 with bad hardware address length
        0 with multicast source address
        0 with multicast target address
        0 with my own hardware address
        168705 for an address not on the interface
        0 with a broadcast source address
        0 with source address duplicate to mine
        29555 which were not for me
        0 packets discarded waiting for resolution
        4 packets sent after waiting for resolution
        27 ARP requests sent
        47 ARP replies sent
        0 requests for memory denied
        0 requests dropped on entry
        0 requests dropped during retry
        0 requests dropped due to interface deletion
        0 requests on unnumbered interfaces
        0 new requests on unnumbered interfaces
        0 replies for from unnumbered interfaces
        0 requests on unnumbered interface with non-subnetted donor
        0 replies from unnumbered interface with non-subnetted donor


The statistics show that two proxy ARP requests were received, and the proxy requests not proxied field indicates that all the unproxied ARP requests received have been proxied by the switch.

Published: 2010-08-19

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