Calls: Send in your ideas. Deadline December 1st, 2021.

Last update: 2004-03-31

Atom-Based Routing

[Improving global internet routing — concluded in 2003]

Routing protocols such as BGP operate on individual prefixes. Each update, table entry, and computation is based on a single prefix as the basic element. Although several prefixes may be stored or transmitted at a time by BGP, the prefix remains the basic element of the protocol. For example, an update message may carry a route containing several prefixes, but the receiving BGP router will still need to consider each prefix in the message separately in its computations.

A routing protocol based on atoms will treat a number of prefixes as equivalent and amortise overhead of the protocol over the equivalent prefixes. Such a routing protocol is the goal of this project.

The effects of atom-based routing are similar to CIDR in that both are able to summarise prefixes (as aggregates and atoms respectively) and treat the summary as a unit. An important difference is that CIDR aggregation can be performed independently by each router; however by definition the computation of an atom requires cooperation between many routers.

200207-plan/index.html More details about the benefits of Atom-based Routing can be found in the project plan.