[TUHS] Research Datakit notes

Noel Chiappa jnc at mercury.lcs.mit.edu
Tue Jun 28 07:40:23 AEST 2022

    > From: Paul Ruizendaal

    > Will read those RFC's, though -- thank you for pointing them out.

Oh, I wouldn't bother - unless you are really into routing (i.e. path

RFC-1992 in particular; it's got my name on it, but it was mostly written by
Martha and Isidro, and I'm not entirely happy with it. E.g. CSC mode and CSS
mode (roughly, strict source route and loose source route); I wasn't really
sold on them, but I was too tired to argue about it. Nimrod was complicated
enough without adding extra bells and whistles - and indeed, LSR and SSR are
basically unused to this day in the Internet (at least, at the internet
layer; MPLS does provide the ability to specify paths, which I gather is used
to some degree). I guess it's an OK overview of the architecture, though.

RFC-1753 is not the best overview, but it has interesting bits. E.g. 2.2
Packet Format Fields, Option 2: "The packet contains a stack of flow-ids,
with the current one on the top." If this reminds you of MPLS, it should!
(One can think of MPLS as Nimrod's packet-carrying subsystem, in some ways.)

I guess I should mention that Nimrod covers more stuff - a lot more - than
just path selection. That's because I felt that the architecture embodied in
IPv4 was missing lots of things which one would need to do the internet layer
'right' in a global-scale Internet (e.g. variable length 'addresses' - for
which we were forced to invent the term 'locator' because many nitwits in the
IETF couldn't wrap their minds around 'addresses' which weren't in every
packet header). And separation of location and identity; and the introduction
of traffic aggregates as first-class objects at the internet layer. Etc, etc,

Nimrod's main focus was really on i) providing a path-selection system which
allowed things like letting users have more input to selecting the path their
traffic took (just as when one gets into a car, one gets to pick the path
one's going to use), and ii) controlling the overhead of the routing.

Of course, on the latter point, in the real world, people just threw
resources (memory, computing power, bandwidth) at the problem. I'm kind of
blown away< that there are almost 1 million routes in the DFZ these days.
Boiling frogs...


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