businessmakeshiftNetworking and Communications

Oct 29, 2013 (3 years and 9 months ago)



Tremendous growth of Internet usage worldwide and recent developments in the field of
ommunication made ease of reach
ability between individuals
, b
usiness professionals,
educational Institutions, government and non
government organizations
access, share and
communicate information.

Routing in the Internet technically means receive, store and transmit the information
using the best possible path. Routing table stores the information of all possible path

to successfully transfer

the data to the next router in the mesh. After successful establishment of
path between source and destination router

packets are transferred via multiple hopes.

Routing protocols are policies and procedures used to transfer packets within the
One of the main routing protocols in this era is Border Gateway Routing Protocol
(BGP) [
]. The increasing popularity of BGP depicts its broad ability to distribute reachability
information by selecting the best route to each destination according to poli
cies specified by
network administrator.

BGP is a critical component of the exponentially growing network of routers that
constitutes Internet. Carrier networks, as well as most large enterprise organizations with
multiple links to one or more service pro
viders use BGP.

Figure 1: Active BGP Entries (FIB) [

The Interior Gateway Protocol (IGP) like OSPF, EIGRP or RIP is used to exchange
routing information within AS. Exterior
Routing Protocol (EGP) like BGP is used for
sharing routing informati
on between ASs. The Information, exchanged using routing protocols,
is about all reachable networks. Every router in the Internet must have the information about all
networks in its routing table to achieve global connectivity. BGP facilitates communicatio
between routers in different autonomous systems. An autonomous system (AS) is a network or
group of networks under a shared technical administration and with common routing policies.
There are two types of Network traffic either local or transit. Local t
raffic either comes from or
terminates in that AS, whereas any other traffic traversing that AS constitutes transit traffic. A
major goal of BGP usage in the Internet is to reduce transit traffic.

Internal and External BGP:

BGP carries path information a
ssociated with a given destination between autonomous
systems; it enables loop
free inter
domain routing. BGP supports Intra
AS routing as well as
As routing in former case it is called Internal BGP (I
BGP), and in later case it is termed as

BGP). BGP router can communicate with other BGP routers in its own AS or
in other ASs. Both the I
BGP and E
BGP implement the BGP protocol with a few different rules.
All I
speaking routers within the same AS must peer with each other in a full
y connected
mesh. Figure 2 shows routers R1, R2, and R3 using I
BGP to exchange routing information
within the same AS, and router pairs R4
R2, R3
R5, and R4
R5 using EBGP to exchange routing
information between ASs.

Figure 2: Internal and External BGP

BGP advertises routes to carry data to the address space indicated by the IP prefix of the
announced route. Route advertisements in BGP use the AS
Path attribute to announce current
routing to neighbor BGP speakers, which includes a list of all transit AS
s that must be used to
reach the target network.

BGP Functionality and Operation:

Routers that run a BGP routing process are often referred to as BGP speakers. Pair of
speaking routers that form a TCP connection to exchange routing information
them are called BGP neighbors or peers. Each BGP session takes place exactly between two
nodes, where two routers exchange routing information dynamically, over TCP port 179


There are four possible message types used with BGP, all consisting
of a standard header plus
specific packet
type contents:


First message to open a BGP session, transmitted when a link to a BGP
neighbor comes up. It contains AS number (ASN) and IP address of the
router who has sent the message.


Message c
ontaining routing information, including path attributes. It
contains Network Layer Reachability Information (NLRI), listing IP
addresses of new usable routes as well as old inactive routes.


Final message transmitted on a link to a BGP nei
ghbor before
disconnecting. It usually describes a

typical conditions prior to terminating
the TCP connection, and provides a mechanism to gracefully close a
connection between BGP peers.


Periodic message between BGP peers to inform neighbor
that the
connection is still viable by guaranteeing that the transmitter is still alive.

BGP States:

BGP process running on router moves through different states during its execution.

Idle State

When the router is not configured for BGP, BGP process o
n this router is in Idle state waiting for
start event which is the manual peer configuration of BGP.

Connect State

In connect state BGP process waits for establishment of TCP connection after which Open
message will be sent for peer negotiation and BGP
process moves to OpenSent state.

Active State

In Active state, the router is actively trying to establish TCP session with peer after which Open
message is sent and router transits to OpenSent state.

OpenSent State

OpenSent state means router has sent a
n Open message containing its BGP parameters and
waiting for the corresponding Open message from peer to negotiate and establish BGP peer

OpenConfirm State

OpenConfirm state means BGP peering relationship has been established between the pe
ers and
they have started exchanging Keepalive messages.

Established State

Established state is the final state where routing information is exchanged among peers.

BGP Route Announcement and Withdrawal:

After establishing a TCP connection, two
adjacent BGP speakers exchange full routing
information. Based on the described paths, the router filters them and selects only one as the best
path, puts it in its IP routing table, and propagates the path to its neighbors. When a BGP speaker
determines t
hat a route has changed or that a new path for the same prefix is chosen, it advertises
the replacement route without requiring a route withdrawal

. A BGP router sends one route
per destination to its BGP peers.

BGP Path Selection:

BGP uses a
vector (PV) algorithm, described in RFC 1322 that itemizes the
complete path to a destination

. The PV routing algorithm supplements the advertisement of
reachable destinations with information that describes various properties of the paths to the
destinations. A path is the recorded sequence of ASNs through which the rea
information traverses
. Each AS is considered equal

independent of its size. BGP uses the
shortest AS
Path routing criterion by default.

Classless Interdomain Rou
ting (CIDR):

In the Classful scheme, the IP address range is divided into different classes known as A,
B and C. Each class identifies the fixed number of bits belonging to network and host part in the
bit IP address. With the global expansion of Inte
rnet it becomes difficult for routers to
maintain entries for two millions class C networks due to memory and processing power
limitations. CIDR

is a new enhanced, classless addressing and routing scheme. With CIDR for
example many contiguous Classful
networks may be combined in one larger classless network
represented by a single prefix. The prefix will be associated with prefix length corresponding to
the number of bits in subnet mask. The prefix of a supernet will have less number of bits in the
et mask than the original combined Classful networks. In this way CIDR scheme reduces
entries in routing tables of the nationa
l ISP routers.