Multiprotocol Label Switching

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Multiprotocol Label Switching

(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]
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (
References in periodicals archive ?
*2: GMPLS: generalized multiprotocol label switching: A technology that extends MPLS onto all layers of the network: TDM (Time Division Multiplexing), switching (SONET/SDH), wavelength switching (Lambda), and physical port switching (Fiber).
CenturyLink said that it now offers several IP-based services delivered over fibre in Houston, including multiprotocol label switching (MPLS), optical wave service, Ethernet and VoIP.
STC has signed a bilateral partnership agreement with Etisalat Group for Interconnection Networks multiprotocol label switching (MPLS), which allows to provide communications and information technology services for clients in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
MANAMA: VIVA Bahrain has launched the multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) virtual private network (VPN) service over its 4G network.
The fibre infrastructure included hundreds of kms of cable linking customers and plots with multi 10-gigabit core network in an MPLS (Multiprotocol Label Switching) service provider model, it added.
He discusses network operations, characterizing quality of service, transport protocols, and implementing operation quality before examining resource and fault management in turn for Internet Protocol (IP), Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), and Ethernet technology.
"We are very excited about our new partnership with Appia Communications, and their enhanced product offering that includes Hosted Video Conferencing, Hosted Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Hosted Exchange email, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), and Session Initiation Protocol Trunking (SIP) that we will be able to offer our clients," says Tom Hill, Vice President of Sales & Marketing for TMS.
AT&T' said its Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS)-enabled VPN solution lays out a path to migrate from the legacy data networks that Winn-Dixie now employs, and permits the grocer to expand Internet Protocol (IP)-based infrastructure.
Ghein, an escalation engineer for Cisco in EMEA, explains the principles and theory behind the multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) networking technology that uses labels attached to packets to forward them through a network.
The company said that under the terms of the three-year contract AT&T Indiana will deliver a Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) private network transport (PNT) solution to Republic Airways' headquarters and 25 remote sites.
The Cisco 7600 Series introduces a new system processor, Supervisor Engine 720-3BXL, support for additional Layer 2 and Layer 3 Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) Virtual Private Network (VPN) and Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) services, greater scalability, and an Enhanced FlexWAN module that doubles the service performance while using existing Cisco 7200 and Cisco 7500 port adapters.
Ericsson will build the multiprotocol label switching (MPLS)-based VPN onto GMCC's existing provincial backbone network using equipment developed by its US-based partner Juniper Networks.

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