Routing Algorithms & Protocols

By Utkarsh Hathi

Routing
• A process of selecting paths in a network to decide where to send the network traffic. • In most subnets, packets require multiple hops to make the journey. • Even in broadcast networks, routing is an issue if source and destination are not on the same network.

Routing Algorithm
• Routing Algorithm is that part of the network layer software responsible for deciding which output line an incoming packet should be transmitted on. • Overall performance of your network depends on the routing algorithms

Continued…
• Routing Algorithm cant be changed, only protocols can be changed and as different protocols use different algorithms; changing it will change the algorithm as well. • Now, we will have a look at the different routing protocols by the algorithms they support.

Routing Metric
• A property of a route, consisting of a value used by algorithms to decide which route will perform better • Different algorithms and protocols use different metrics and that can help us to decide which protocol to use by the type of services we want.

IGP and EGP
• IGP – Interior Gateway Protocol, also known as intra domain routing algorithm
– Works within an autonomous system

• Can be divided into three categories
– Distance vector routing protocols – Link state routing protocols – Balanced Hybrid routing protocol

Autonomous system (IGP)

Distance Vector Routing Protocol
• Requires that a router informs it’s neighbors of changes in topology periodically; can be also a triggered update if there is an instant change • Each node maintains a table of minimum distances to every node. • Examples: RIP V1 ,V2 and IGRP

Routing Information Protocol (V1)
• As a distance vector routing protocol, it uses hop count as a metric. • Limitation of 15 hops for a packet to travel to avoid the routing loops. Thus it limits the size of network it can support. • Initially used to send update every 30 seconds but as networks became large it became difficult.

Continued…
• RIP is not preferred choice for routing as its convergence time and scalability are poor compared to EIGRP, OSPF or IS-IS. • RIP V1 doesn’t support subnet while RIP V2 does thus supporting Classless Inter-domain routing.

IGRP
• Interior gateway routing protocol (IGRP), another distance vector routing protocol invented by CISCO and increases the hop limit to 255 from 15 of RIP. • Supports multiple metrics such as bandwidth, delay, load, MTU and reliability.

IGRP metric count

Link state routing protocol
• Every node constructs the map of the connectivity to the network, in the form of a graph showing which nodes are connected to other nodes • Then each node calculates the best logical path from it to every possible destination.

• Each node independently runs an algorithm over the map to determine the shortest path from itself to every other node in the network • Uses link as the metric and will choose the path from where the packet will reach the fastest

Example:

Open Shortest Path First (OSPF)
• The most widely-used interior gateway protocol (IGP) in large enterprise networks • Support variable length Subnet masking supporting Classless Inter domain routing. • Detects changes in the topology, such as link failures, very quickly and converges on a new loop-free routing structure within seconds

Continued…

OSPF Areas
• Allows an AS to be split into different areas for ease of management and the routing information transmitted between areas is summarized to reduce network bandwidth consumption. • Special area called the backbone

OSPF Computation
• OSPF route computation • OSPF route computation is described as follows: • 1. Based on the network topology around itself, each router generates Link State Advertisements (LSA) and sends them to other routers in update packets. • 2. Each OSPF router collects LSAs from other routers to compose a LSDB (Link State Database). An LSA describes the network topology around a router, so the LSDB describes the entire network topology of the AS. • 3. Each router transforms the LSDB to a weighted directed graph, which actually reflects the topology architecture of the entire network. All the routers have the same graph. • 4. Each router uses the SPF algorithm to compute a Shortest Path Tree that shows the routes to the nodes in the autonomous system. The router itself is the root of the tree.

Border Gateway Protocol
• Was created to replace Exterior gateway protocol, that is used for interconnecting different autonomous systems. • Most Internet service providers must use BGP to establish routing between one another

BGP between different AS

• The exchange of the routing information between two routers using BGP takes place in a session. • For that BGP uses the services of TCP; when a TCP connection is created for BGP it lasts for long.

Types of BGP messages

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