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SIMPLIFIED MPLS TRAFFIC ENGINEERING AND TRANSPORT PROFILE FOR SOFTWARE DEFINED NETWORKS USING UNIQUE LSP LABELS

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000234846D
Publication Date: 2014-Feb-10

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Related People

Rakesh Gandhi: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

A solution is presented herein for simplified MPLS Traffic Engineering (TE) and Transport Profile (TP) for a Software Defined Network (SDN) application that computes Label Switched Paths (LSPs) and assigns unique path identifier labels. The forwarding plane on each node of the LSP is programmed using simple APIs by the SDN-TE application with the unique path identifier label to forward packets. The path identifier label carried by the packets is encoded to achieve LSP identification, load-balancing among other forwarding functions. In addition, a novel 1:1 Fast Reroute technique is presented herein which eliminates the need for label stacking after a fast reroute event and handles simultaneous failures on both primary and backup LSPs.

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SIMPLIFIED MPLS TRAFFIC ENGINEERING AND TRANSPORT PROFILE FOR SOFTWARE DEFINED NETWORKS USING UNIQUE LSP LABELS

AUTHORS:

Rakesh Gandhi

Siva Sivabalan Tarek Saad

CISCO SYSTEMS, INC.

ABSTRACT

    A solution is presented herein for simplified MPLS Traffic Engineering (TE) and Transport Profile (TP) for a Software Defined Network (SDN) application that computes Label Switched Paths (LSPs) and assigns unique path identifier labels. The forwarding plane on each node of the LSP is programmed using simple APIs by the SDN-TE application with the unique path identifier label to forward packets. The path identifier label carried by the packets is encoded to achieve LSP identification, load-balancing among other forwarding functions. In addition, a novel 1:1 Fast Reroute technique is presented herein which eliminates the need for label stacking after a fast reroute event and handles simultaneous failures on both primary and backup LSPs.

BACKGROUND

    MPLS (Multi-Protocol Label Switching) Traffic Engineering (TE) has been developed to meet data networking requirements such as guaranteed bandwidth service and fast restoration from a failure. End-to-end circuits in the form of Label Switched Paths (LSP) are setup through an IP network using Resource Reservation Protocol (RSVP) and are generally referred to as MPLS Traffic Engineering LSPs. Protocols for setting up the MPLS TE LSPs have been defined in [RFC3209] and fast reroute procedures in [RFC4090].

    Point-to-Multipoint (P2MP) TE may include the use of RSVP signaling to set up Label Switched Paths for data traffic replication (e.g. video distribution). Protocols for setting up the P2MP-TE LSPs have been defined in [RFC4875]. Copyright 2014 Cisco Systems, Inc.

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    The MPLS Transport Profile (TP) solution is defined using static end-to-end provisioning of the Label Switched Path. However, MPLS TP solution does not support dynamic MPLS TE functionality such as re-optimization of the LSP path.

    There is an increasing demand for simplified data networks that is enabled by off- the-box Software Defined Network (SDN) applications. Requirements for such solutions are to reduce the cost of the hardware that does packet forwarding and employ centralized SDN applications (on an inexpensive server) that can provide enhanced programmability. Thus, there is a need for a low cost ASIC-based hardware platform that can provide MPLS TE functionality. Furthermore, a centralized SDN TE application can help optimize network resources (e.g. available bandwidth) globally in the network.

    Path computation Element (PCE) (running on off-the-box server) that computes paths for TE Label Switched Paths (LSP) can be stateful or stateless. Stateful PCE maintains the TE LSP state database. Stateful PCE may request an ingress node to create a tunnel interface dynamically and signal the LSP using RSVP signaling protocol in the network. Once tunnel is successfully setup, the ingress node can then use the tunnel to steer tr...