Cisco IOS – “configuration not allowed when device is not the primary server for vlan database.”

KB ID 0001127 


I was trying to delete a VLAN from a client switch, and this was happening;

Core-3560#conf t
Enter configuration commands, one per line.  End with CNTL/Z.
Core-3560(config)#no vlan 30
VTP VLAN configuration not allowed when device is not the primary server for vlan database.


Now as far as I was aware there was only one switch, (certainly on this LAN segment anyway). What you need to do is change the VTP mode to transparent, then you can make your changes. Afterwards I changed the mode back because a. Never assume you know everything, b. They are at the other end of the country, and c. Its never cause a problem before.

Core-3560-S(config)#vtp mode transparent
Setting device to VTP Transparent mode for VLANS.


Core-3560(config)#no vlan 30
Core-3560(config)#vlan 120
Core-3560(config-vlan)#name Voice-VLAN
Core-3560(config)#no vtp mode transparent
Resetting device to VTP SERVER mode.

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Author: PeteLong

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  1. awesome to know that and how it done…..Thanks

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  2. This device ran VTP 3. That’s not the default, so someone configured it that way
    and chances are, he/she had good reasons for that. In a VTP Domain, changes to
    the vlan database (removing, adding, changing names) are to be done on the vtp
    server. In VTP 3 there is only one primary server and changes could be done
    only on this box. The right way to achieve your objective would have been, to
    find the VTP3 Server, make it a primary server and then apply your change.

    What you did was: remove the box from the vtp domain, apply your changes and
    bring it back to the vtp domain (which essentially rolled back your change).

    Explaining the whole thing would blow up this comment, i therefore highly
    recommend a brief look at ciscos fine documentation about VTP.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi You are correct, however, as I stared above, I knew this to be the only switch the client had. 🙂


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