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Method for Multiple Tunnel Management for Seamless Mobility Disclosure Number: IPCOM000011627D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Mar-10
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Mar-10

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Gregory W. Cox


Providing efficient and seamless mobility for a group of users on a mobile network is a technically challenging problem. One means for addressing this problem is to enhance the IETF standard Mobile IP to create multiple parallel tunnels between the home agent and the mobile router. This is sometimes called bicasting in the literature. In this approach, during a handoff the home agent duplicates packets and sends them via an old tunnel (Mobile IP Tunnel 1 in Figure 1) and a new tunnel (Mobile IP Tunnel 2 in Figure 1). This greatly reduces the probability of dropping packets during handoffs. However, it also introduces the problem of duplicate packets being received by the mobile network’s clients. The duplicate packets can adversely affect the performance of the mobile network’s clients while wasting the mobile network’s bandwidth. The present method detects and eliminates these duplicate packets and determines when one of the parallel tunnels should be shut down, ending the handoff.