MPLS Architecture

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MPLS Network Model
Internet

LER LSR LSR LER

IP

MPLS

LSR

LSR LER

MPLS IP

LSR = Label Switched Router LER = Label Edge Router

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MPLS Benefits Comparing MPLS with existing IP core and IP/ATM technologies. MPLS has many advantages and benefits: ‡ The performance characteristics of layer 2 networks ‡ The connectivity and network services of layer 3 networks ‡ Improves the price/performance of network layer routing ‡ Improved scalability 3 .

MPLS Benefits (cont·d) ‡ Improves the possibilities for traffic engineering ‡ Supports the delivery of services with QoS guarantees ‡ Avoids need for coordination of IP and ATM address allocation and routing information 4 .

used when hosts don·t support MPLS ‡ For Scaling ² Forward on a finer granularity than the labels can provide 5 . including the IP header ‡ For forwarding at the initial router .Necessity of L3 Forwarding ‡ For security ² To allow packet filtering at firewalls ² Requires examination of packet contents.

MPLS Architecture ‡ Down stream label assignment for unicast traffic ² On demand ² Unsolicited ‡ Path selection ² Hop by hop ² Explicit ‡ Ordered vs. independent control ‡ Loop detection and prevention mechanisms 6 .

Label Distribution Protocol (LDP) ‡ Set of procedures used by LSRs to establish LSPs ‡ Mapping between network-layer routing information directly to data-link layer switched paths ‡ LDP peers: ² Two LSRs which use LDP to exchange label/stream mapping ² Information exchange known as ´LDP Sessionµ 7 .

change. maintain and terminate sessions between LDP peers ‡ Advertisement messages ² Used to create. and delete label mappings ‡ Notification messages ² Used to provide advisory information and to signal error information 8 .LDP Messages ‡ Discovery messages ² Used to announce and maintain the presence of an LSR ‡ Session/Adjacency messages ² Used to establish.

Forwarding Equivalence Class (FEC) ‡ Introduced to denote packet forwarding classes ‡ Comprises traffic ² To a particular destination ² To destination with distinct service requirements 9 .

LSP .FEC Mapping ‡ FEC specified as a set of two elements ² IP Address Prefix .32 bit IP address ‡ A given packet matches a particular LSP if and only if IP Address Prefix FEC element matches packet·s IP destination address 10 .any length from 0 ² 32 ² Host Address .

Label Spaces ‡ Useful for assignment and distribution of labels ‡ Two types of label spaces ² Per interface label space: Interface-specific labels used for interfaces that use interface resources for labels ² Per platform label space: Platform-wide incoming labels used for interfaces that can share the same label space 11 .

LDP Discovery ‡ A mechanism that enables an LSR to discover potential LDP peers ‡ Avoids unnecessary explicit configuration of LSR label switching peers ‡ Two variants of the discovery mechanism ² Basic discovery mechanism: used to discover LSR neighbors that are directly connected at the link level ² Extended discovery mechanism: used to locate LSRs that are not directly connected at the link level 12 .

LDP Discovery (Cont·d) ‡ Basic discovery mechanism ² To engage .send LDP Hellos periodically ² LDP Hellos sent as UDP packets for all routers on that subnet ‡ Extended discovery mechanism ² To engage .send LDP targeted Hellos periodically ² Targeted Hellos are sent to a specific address ² Targeted LSR decides whether to respond or to ignore the targeted Hello 13 .

Session Establishment ‡ Exchange of LDP discovery Hellos triggers session establishment ‡ Two step process ² Transport connection establishment ‡ If LSR1 does not already have a LDP session for the exchange of label spaces LSR1:a and LSR2:b. it attempts to open a TCP connection with LSR2 ‡ LSR1 determines the transport addresses at its end (A1) and LSR2·s end (A2) of the TCP connection ‡ If A1>A2. otherwise it is passive ² Session initialization ‡ Negotiate session parameters by exchanging LDP initialization messages 14 . LSR1 plays the active role.

however. each LSR must be aware of the distribution method used by its peer 15 .Label Distribution and Management ‡ Two label distribution techniques ² Downstream on demand label distribution: An LSR can distribute a FEC label binding in response to an explicit request ² Downstream Unsolicited label distribution: Allows an LSR to distribute label bindings to LSRs that have not explicitly requested them ‡ Both can be used in the same network at the same time.

LSR advertises label mapping for a FEC whenever it is prepared ² Consequence: upstream label can be advertised before a downstream label is received 16 .Label Distribution Control Mode ‡ Independent Label Distribution Control ² Each LSR may advertise label mappings to its neighbors at any time ² Independent Downstream on Demand mode .LSR answers without waiting for a label mapping from next hop ² Independent Downstream Unsolicited mode .

if ‡ Next hop router for FEC is outside of label switching network ‡ FEC elements are reachable by crossing a domain boundary 17 . the LSR waits till it gets a label from downstream LSR ² LSR acts as an egress for a particular FEC.Distribution Control Mode (cont·d) ‡ Ordered Label Distribution Control ² Initiates transmission of label mapping for a FEC only if it has next FEC next hop or is the egress ² If not.

Label Retention Mode ‡ Conservative Label Retention Mode ² Advertised label mappings are retained only if they are used for forwarding packets ² Downstream on Demand Mode typically used with Conservative Label Retention Mode ² Advantage: only labels required are maintained ² Disadvantage: a change in routing causes delay ‡ Liberal Retention Mode ² All label mappings are retained regardless of whether LSR is next hop or not ² Faster reaction to routing changes 18 .

label) pair ‡ When next hop changes for a FEC. LSR will retrieve the label for the new next hop from the LIB 19 .Label Information Base ‡ LSR maintains learned labels in Label Information Base (LIB) ‡ Each entry of LIB associates an FEC with an (LDP Identifier.

4.Talk BGP ‡Internal Routers 1.Talk OSPF C Domain #2 1 2 3 4 5 6 D A B E 20 F Domain #1 Domain #3 Note: Internal routers in domains 1 and 3 not shown .6 .E.B.Hierarchical Routing in MPLS ‡External Routers A.5.F .C.2.3.D.

Hierarchical Routing (cont·d) ‡ When IP packet traverses domain #2. it will contain two labels. which is encapsulated inside a lower level label used within Domain #2 ‡ Operation at C ² C needs to swap BGP label to put label that D expects ² C also needs to add an OSPF label that 1 expects ² C therefore pushes down the BGP label and adds a lower level label 21 . encoded as a ´label stackµ ‡ Higher level label used between routers C and D.

and not with each packet ² MPLS makes explicit routing practical 22 .Explicit Routing in MPLS ‡ Two options for route selection: ² Hop by hop routing ² Explicit routing ‡ Explicit Routing (Source Routing) is a very powerful technique ² With pure datagram routing. overhead of carrying complete explicit route is prohibitive ² MPLS allows explicit route to be carried only at the time the LSP is setup.

. by an operator or by a centralized server) 23 .Explicit Routing (Cont·d) ‡ In an explicitly routed LSP ² LSP next hop is not chosen by the local node ² Selected by a single node.g. usually the ingress ‡ The sequence of LSRs may be chosen by ² Configuration (e.

Loops and Loop Handling ‡ Routing protocols used in conjunction with MPLS are based on distributed computation which may contain loops ‡ Loops handling .3 categories ² Loop Mitigation/Survival ² Loop Detection ² Loop Prevention 24 .

Loop Mitigation ‡ Minimizes the impact of loops by limiting the amount of resources consumed by the loop ‡ Method ² Based on use of TTL field which is decremented at each hop ² Use of dynamic routing protocol converging rapidly to non-looping paths 25 .

Loop Detection ‡ Loops may be setup but they are subsequently detected ‡ The detected loop is then broken by dropping label relationship ‡ Broken loops now necessitates packets to be forwarded using L3 forwarding 26 .

Loop Detection (Cont·d) ‡ Method is based on transmitting a Loop Detection Control Packet (LDCP) whenever a route changes ‡ LDCP is forwarded towards the destination until ² Last MPLS node along the path is reached ² TTL of the LDCP expires ² It returns to the node which originated it 27 .

Loop Prevention ‡ Ensures that loops are never set up ‡ Labels are not used until it is sure to be loop free ‡ Methods ² Labels are propagated starting at the egress switch ² Use source routing to set up label bindings from the egress switch to each ingress switch 28 .

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