Multiprotocol Label Switching

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Multiprotocol Label Switching

(networking)
(MPLS) A packet switching protocol developed by the IETF. Initially developed to improve switching speed, other benefits are now seen as being more important.

MPLS adds a 32-bit label to each packet to improve network efficiency and to enable routers to direct packets along predefined routes in accordance with the required quality of service. The label is added when the packet enters the MPLS network, and is based on an analysis of the packet header. The label contains information on the route along which the packet may travel, and the forwarding equivalence class (FEC) of the packet. Packets with the same FEC are routed through the network in the same way.

Routers make forwarding decisions based purely on the contents of the label. This simplifies the work done by the router, leading to an increase in speed. At each router, the label is replaced with a new label, which tells the next router how to forward the packet. The label is removed when the packet leaves the MPLS network.

Modern ASIC-based routers can look up routes fast enough to make the speed increase less important. However, MPLS still has some benefits. The use of FECs allows QoS levels to be guaranteed, and MPLS allows IP tunnels to be created through a network, so that VPNs can be implemented without encryption.

MPLS Resource Center.

[RFC 3031]
References in periodicals archive ?
Contract notice: Provision of of a Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) Connectivity Service.
Tokyo, Japan, Sept 6, 2006 - (JCN) - The National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) will conduct a feasibility test of Generalized Multi-Protocol Label Switching (GMPLS) between the U.
Cisco also enables integration with Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS), which allows service providers to offer IPv6 access to their customers with minimal upgrades to their existing infrastructure.
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During the independent test event, Sycamore SN 16000 intelligent optical switches successfully demonstrated multi-vendor IP/Optical control plane interworking using standards-based Generalized Multi-Protocol Label Switching (GMPLS).
The Company enables these customers to expand their product/service offerings by providing VoIP's nationwide Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) and other services such as voice termination/origination, e911 emergency call service for VoIP, CALEA, Broadband Voice, IP Centrex and other advanced communications services and technologies.
Caspian, the leading provider of multimedia traffic control solutions for IP and multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) networks, announced today that National Taiwan University (NTU), the most prestigious institution of higher learning in Taiwan, has selected Caspian Media Controllers for ensuring quality in its network backbone.
New Edge Networks plans to introduce class-of-service support for its Multi-protocol Label Switching network services, aiming to expand its offerings to also attract customers with larger bandwidth and performance needs.
ACS will connect domestic datacenters to the Qwest multi-protocol label switching (MPLS)-based network using iQ Networking's wide-area network platform.
Caspian, the leading provider of multimedia traffic management solutions for IP and multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) networks, today announced that China Unicom, the world's third largest mobile telephone operator, is deploying Caspian's Media Controllers with OC-48 trunks across its country's backbone to manage multimedia network traffic by allocating bandwidth more efficiently and fairly.
Remi Communications' network supports a variety of connectivity options for business customers including Metro Ethernet, Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS) and Layer-2/Layer-3 Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) services.

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