A Comparison of MPLS Traffic Engineering Initiatives

The momentum toward voice and data convergence, each with their own unique set of requirements, is driving the Internet to cope with new realities. Historically, the Internet infrastructure and protocols were intended solely and optimized for data. Traditional routing paradigms incorporating Internet Gateway Protocols or IGPs, (such as RIP and OSPF) and Exterior Gateway Protocols or EGPs, (such as BGP4), no longer represent the optimal solution. On top of traditional data traffic, the addition of Hyper-Text Transfer Protocol (HTTP), voice, store and forward messaging, multimedia traffic and real-time e-commerce applications to the infrastructure are pushing toward ever-higher bandwidth requirements, as well as the ability to guarantee that bandwidth. This new reality is promulgating the development of new models to ensure guaranteed delivery of services such as voice, on par with the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) regardless of unexpected interruptions in the network infrastructure. To the network, voice is just considered additional data, with very specific Quality of Service (QoS) and Class of Service (CoS) requirements.

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