How to connect ingress and egress ports
Connections must be made between (ingress) network ports and (egress) tool ports before rules can take effect.
There are no dedicated ingress and egress ports in the Matrix; all physical ports can assume either one of these roles. You, an administrator, can designate a physical port as either a (ingress) network port or (egress) tool port by using the web interface (dashboard) or command line interface (CLI).
How to connect a network port to a tool port
Connecting one network port to one tool port establishes a network path between the two. Packets entering the network port are forwarded to the tool port and any devices connected to it.
To connect a network port to a tool port:
1. Starting in the dashboard, click Ports.
The layout designer appears, where connections between network and tool ports can be created.
2. Use a drag-and-drop operation to connect a network port to a tool port.
Successful connections are represented by lines between the ports and the appearance of an empty rule. The empty rule is a placeholder for introducing options such as filtering.
 
You successfully connected a network port to a tool port. In this basic configuration, assuming the empty rule is unmodified, every packet entering the network port is forwarded to the tool port unchanged. And because the connection exists, you can now introduce packet processing in the form of rules—changing both how and what packets are forwarded to the tool port.
 
How to connect many ports to the same rule
Multiple network ports and tool ports can be connected to the same instance of a rule. For example, doing so determines if aggregation or replication (or both) are used in a layout configuration.
More than just for aggregation and replication of traffic, connecting multiple ports to the same rule creates additional benefits:
Ability to use load balancing
Ability to apply the same filtering across several network links
Ability to append packet trailers to packets arriving from various network links
Ability to resize ingress packets from multiple network links before forwarding (packet trimming)
Note: To edit the active layout (the layout currently in use), perform edits directly from the Ports page. Edits to the active layout take effect in real time.
To connect multiple network ports or tool ports to the same rule:
1. Starting in the dashboard, click Ports.
The layout designer appears, where connections between network and tool ports can be created.
2. In the Layout list, select a layout.
3. Click the Actions list.
The Actions list is located near the top-right corner of the layout designer.
4. Click Edit.
5. Use a drag-and-drop operation to connect a network port to a tool port.
Successful connections are represented by lines between the ports and the appearance of an empty rule. The empty rule is a placeholder for introducing options such as filtering.
6. Use a drag-and-drop operation to connect additional network ports or tool ports to the same rule.
 
Depending on how many network ports or tool ports you connected to the rule, the results are different:
By connecting multiple network ports to the rule, you are aggregating those network links.
By connecting multiple tool ports to the rule, you are replicating traffic (if load balancing is disabled).