Fault-tolerant Reconfigurable Ethernet-based IP Network Proxy

J. Baranski, M. Crocker, and G. Lazarou (USA)


Fault-tolerance, Ethernet, IP Network, Proxy, Reconfigura bility


Using commonly available hardware and software, we present a proxy scheme for IP over Ethernet networks that provides a fault-tolerant solution without the need for mod ification of existing networking equipment. This type of fault-tolerant reconfigurable Ethernet-based proxy (FREP) is transparent to current applications and provides full re dundancy with minimal packet loss and fast reconfigura tion times. A prototype implementation yielded a recon figuration time of 1.55 sec. Routing delays from the OSPF dynamic routing protocol, however, increased the apparent interruption of service to an average of 10.2 sec when tested in a three-subnet/three-router testbed network. An almost instantaneous recovery time of < 0.02 sec was observed in all cases. The proposed proxy scheme can be deployed in any network based on a topology that allows two con nections between a subnet and the backbone. The solution relies on a dynamic routing protocol to provide backbone level routing around the malfunctioning inter-network link.

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