IEEE Computer and Communication Societies and GBC/ACM

7:00 PM, Thursday, February 19, 2009

Verizon Labs, 117 West Street, Waltham, MA

Making Bridged Ethernet Plug-and-Play More Efficient and Robust: Layer 2 Forwarding Using Link State Routing with RBridges/TRILL

Donald Eastlake

DonaldEastlakeKoala.jpg photo Bridged Ethernets are very convenient because devices can be moved around in a plug-and-play fashion without worrying about renumbering or reconfiguration. Since the early 1980s, Ethernet bridging has been based on the spanning tree protocol, which works by blocking ports. Blocking ports results in congestion and inefficiency. To improve this situation, the Internet Engineering Task Force has chartered the TRILL (TRansparent Interconnection of Lots of Links) Working Group. It's goal is to design a solution for shortest-path frame routing in multi-hop IEEE 802.1 compliant Ethernets with arbitrary topologies by using an exiting link-state routing protocol.

RBridges are devices that implement the IETF TRILL protocol, which uses the IS-IS routing protocol. RBridges provide optimal pair-wise forwarding with zero configuration, safe forwarding even during periods of temporary loops, and support for multipathing of both unicast and multicast traffic to increase network throughput. RBridges are compatible with previous IEEE 802.1 customer bridges, as well as IPv4 and IPv6 routers and end nodes, and support VLANs.

Donald Eastlake 3rd is co-chair of the IETF TRILL Working Group and editor of the RBridge base protocol specification. He is the Chief Technology Officer for Stellar Switches and an author of books on XML Security and the Internet Open Trading Protocol. Donald is the author of 48 IETF RFCs, including the only IETF RFC with the word 'sex' in its title, and an inventor on five issued patents and seven published patent filings still being pursued.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. and the presentation soon after at the Verizon Labs, 117 West Street, Waltham. Directions to Verizon Labs, 117 West Street, Waltham, MA 02451 (the Sylvan Road entrance is now closed): Take Exit 27B on I95/128, heading west on Winter Street. Stay all the way to the right. Verizon Labs is 1/2 mile ahead. At the second traffic light, turn left onto WEST ST. and then take the first right (at the Verizon sign) which leads into the Verizon campus. The building and entrance for the meeting are on your right. After parking come into the building and follow the IEEE signs into the IEEE meeting area.

We will be taking the speaker to dinner at the Green Papaya on Winter St in Waltham at 5:30 PM just before the talk.

For more information contact Peter Mager (p.mager at

Updated: Jan 3, 2009.