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DRSTP: A Simple Technique for Preventing Count-to-Infinity in RSTP Controlled Switched Ethernet Networks
Syed Muhammad Atif
Pages - 278 - 296     |    Revised - 31-01-2011     |    Published - 08-02-2011
Volume - 2   Issue - 6    |    Publication Date - January / February  Table of Contents
Network reliability, Count-to-Infinity, Network Convergence, RSTP
Ethernet is a dominant local area network (LAN) technology from last three decades. Today most LANs are switched Ethernet networks. Spanning tree protocol is a vital protocol for smooth operation of switched Ethernet networks. However the current standard of spanning tree protocol for Ethernet – commonly known as Rapid Spanning Tree Protocol or in short RSTP – is highly susceptible to classical count-to-infinity problem. This problem adversely effects the network convergence time, depending upon how long count-to-infinity situation persists in the network, and thus leads to network congestion and packet loss. In the worst case, even forwarding loops may be induced that further enhances the network congestion. Thus, the dependability of RSTP controlled Ethernet networks are highly questionable due to its vulnerability against the count-to-infinity problem. This paper first discusses the count-to-infinity problem in spanning tree controlled Ethernet networks, in general and in RSTP controlled Ethernet networks, in particular. Then this paper proposes a simple solution to overwhelm this problem efficiently.
CITED BY (2)  
1 Lopes, J., Sargento, S., & Zúquete, A. (2013). A Dependable Alternative to the Spanning Tree Protocol. In Dependable Computing (pp. 148-164). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
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Mr. Syed Muhammad Atif
PIMSAT - Pakistan