Overview of Segment Routing
- Go to node N using the shortest path
Go to node N over the shortest path to node M and then follow links Layer 1, Layer 2, and Layer 3
Apply service S
With segment routing, the network no longer needs to maintain a per-application and per-flow state. Instead, it obeys the forwarding instructions provided in the packet.
Segment Routing relies on a small number of extensions to Cisco Intermediate System-to-Intermediate System (IS-IS) and Open Shortest Path First (OSPF) protocols. It can operate with an MPLS (Multiprotocol Label Switching) or an IPv6 data plane, and it integrates with the rich multi service capabilities of MPLS, including Layer 3 VPN (L3VPN), Virtual Private Wire Service (VPWS), Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS), and Ethernet VPN (EVPN).
Segment routing can be directly applied to the Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) architecture with no change in the forwarding plane. Segment routing utilizes the network bandwidth more effectively than traditional MPLS networks and offers lower latency. A segment is encoded as an MPLS label. An ordered list of segments is encoded as a stack of labels. The segment to process is on the top of the stack. The related label is popped from the stack, after the completion of a segment.
Segment routing can be applied to the IPv6 architecture with a new type of routing extension header. A segment is encoded as an IPv6 address. An ordered list of segments is encoded as an ordered list of IPv6 addresses in the routing extension header. The segment to process is indicated by a pointer in the routing extension header. The pointer is incremented, after the completion of a segment.
Segment Routing provides automatic traffic protection without any topological restrictions. The network protects traffic against link and node failures without requiring additional signaling in the network. Existing IP fast re-route (FRR) technology, in combination with the explicit routing capabilities in Segment Routing guarantees full protection coverage with optimum backup paths. Traffic protection does not impose any additional signaling requirements.