Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Routing Information Protocol (RIP)

Routing Information Protocol (RIP) at one time was one of the most commonly used routing protocols on small, internal network. With the availability of other routing protocol such as IGRP, EIGRP, OSPF, IS-IS, BGP... plus the lack of support for large network the usage of RIP has been decreased and it is considered obsolete. For this reason, it's often referred to as "Rest In Peace" protocol.

Nonetheless, Cisco and other networking vendors are still making RIP & RIPv2 available today in their IOS models. I like RIP for the fact that it's very simple and easy to setup. You can get a small network running RIP up in just a few minutes. RIP is also a very good choice of protocol to get one familiarized with routing protocols.

Besides its infamous Pros and Cons, one lesser known fact about RIP is that you can also use it to load balance your network. However, beware of the fact that RIP does not take bandwidth into consideration when it installs learned routes into the routing table.

So let's say you have two ways to send a packet from A to B and the first path is going through a 128k line while the second goes through a T1 line; RIP will treat both paths equally as if they have the same bandwidth.

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