The Data Centre move happened last weekend – all went well and we did it (a team of 11) in 24 hours. I had to look after the firewalls, ACEs, proxy, WAAS as a priority and chipped in whereever else when required. For a business that does several hundred million dollars of business through its web site (as one example) – It was a great effort to have the business back online 2 days prior to expectation. Some of the guys I work with really showed their expertise and planning skills.
One thing I learned was that if unsure, always bring up the standby FWSM or ACE when :
A. The primary unit is online and functional and is active.
B. The underlying network (vlans, switch configs etc) are up and stable.
I had a few dramas where the failover states of the FWSM or ACE seemed ok, but because a few things were changed during the move things started to go awry. In some cases both FWSMs or ACEs were up, but because of some underlying changes to the network they would both think they are active and the network can get turned into a banana. (eg. failover vlan removed!)
In hindsight, I should have left the secondary modules out until all other network work was completed. Just because you think the modules are working at one point in time doesn’t mean they will be behaving as expected at a later point if there are changes being made to the network.