NSFNet Routers


art@acc.arpa
21 Apr 88 10:07:00 PST


> I found the Data Comm article intriguing. I haven't heard
>anything on usenet or the internet regarding the new NSFnet router
>architecture. Could someone point me toward a journal article, trade
>rag article, or other source where I could learn something about how
>these new RTs route?

There is a document from MERIT titled "Management and Operation of the
NSFNET Backbone Network" that describes the new NSFNet backbone.

> If there is nothing in print, I would like to invite someone
>from MERIT or other knowledgable developer to post something about how
>these RTs work compared to some plain vanilla (:-) router like a
>cisco, a proteon, a fuzzball, or homegrown router.

There was a presentation by IBM at the last IETF mtng, and I'll try to
summarize from memory.

The NSFNet Router nodes will consist of a cluster of IBM PC/RTs running
a BSD 4.3 derivitive. The RTs will be interconnected via token ring.
Most of the RTs will be Packet Switching Processors (PSP) and will
typically be connected to the high speed serial backbone trunks or to
Ethernets of the regional networks. Each of the PSPs will route using
it's local kernel routing table. A couple of the RTs will be running
an SPF based routing protocol derived from the DEC routing protocol that
ANSI is submitting to ISO. These Routing Control Processors (RCP) will
pass the current routing information to each of the PSPs for updating
of their local routing tables. I believe that the backbone will talk EGP
to the regionals. (somebody correct me if I'm wrong)

                                        Art Berggreen
                                        art@acc.arpa

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