How to configure a MAC-Based VLAN?

Zyxel_Kay Posts: 616  Zyxel Employee
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What is MAC-Based VLAN?

MAC-based VLAN is a feature that allows the assignment of incoming untagged packets to specific VLANs based on the source MAC address of the packet. This classification of traffic enables efficient network segmentation and management.

How does MAC-Based VLAN work?

When untagged packets reach the switch, the switch references a MAC-to-VLAN mapping table. If the source MAC address of the packet matches an entry in this table, the corresponding VLAN ID is assigned to the packet. The VLAN ID is then verified against the VLAN table. If valid, ingress processing on the packet proceeds; otherwise, the packet is dropped.


Consider a network setup where a smart managed switch interfaces with an unmanaged switch, which in turn connects to end devices.

Router — Smart managed switch — Unmanaged switch — End devices

The end devices require segmentation into different VLANs, but lack support for VLAN recognition. In such a scenario, deploying MAC-based VLANs proves advantageous.


In this scenario, there are two end devices PC_A and PC_B connected to the unmanaged switch, and this unmanaged switch is connect to a smart managed switch. To ensure the PC_A has a VLAN10 IP , PC_B has a VLAN 20 IP, we may configure the MAC-based VLAN to achieve this.

Below are the step-by-step instructions to configure the MAC-based VLAN:

  1. At the Static VLAN interface set the VLAN 10 and VLAN 20 as following:
    • VLAN10:
      • Fixed: Port 1 and Port 2
      • Tagged: Port 1
    • VLAN20:
      • Fixed Port 1 and Port 2
      • Tagged: Port 1
  2. Configure the MAC-based VLAN, please navigate to SWITCHING > VLAN > MAC Based VLAN Setup, Add an entry for your device. In this interface configure your device name, MAC address and the VLAN ID for this device.