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Chapter 9: Forwarding IP Packets > ROUTER ARCHITECTURES

ROUTER ARCHITECTURES

There are three main steps that a router must follow to process and forward a packet to the next hop. Processing a packet means to check an incoming packet for errors and other parameters, looking up the destination address in a forwarding table to determine the proper output port for the packet, and then sending the packet out on that port.

But how are the input ports connected to the output ports? In smaller routers, which can even be implemented on PC or laptop computers with two or more interfaces, software simply examines the packet headers and forwards the packets where they need to go. Windows PCs can do this, and often do on home networks. In Linux, there is a command to allow the “host” to forward packets without processing the content of the packet more fully.


  

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