Difference between Transparent Bridge and Source Routing Bridge

Bridge is a device that is attached to connect two or more LANs to create continued LAN. A bridge works at data link layer of the OSI reference model.

Transparent Bridge:
Transparent bridge automatically maintains a routing table and update table in response to maintain changing topology. Transparent bridge mechanism consists of three mechanisms:

1. Frame forwarding
2. Address Learning
3. Loop Resolution 

Transparent bridge is easy to use, install the bridge and no software changes are needed in hosts. In all the cases, transparent bridge flooded the broadcast and multicast frames.

Source Routing Bridge:
Source routing bridge decides the route between two hosts. Source routing bridge uses the MAC destination address of a frame to direct it by the source routing algorithm. In source routing, the route over which the frame is to send is Known to every station on the extended LAN. The routing information is stored in the frames.

The difference between Transparent Bridge and Source Routing Bridge are as following:

S.No. Transparent Bridge Source Routing Bridge
1. Transparent bridge service is connectionless. Source Routing Bridge service is connection oriented.
2. In transparent bridge mechanism bridges automatically develop a routing table. In source routing bridge, bridges do not maintain any routing information.
3. Transparent bridge does not support multipath routing. Source routing bridge can make use of multiple path to same destination.
4. The path used by transparent bridge between any two hosts may not be the optimal path. Source route bridge always uses the optimal path.
5. Failures are handled by the transparent bridge on its own. Host handle the failure of bridge on its own.
6. Transparent bridges are fully transparent to the users. Source routing bridges are not visible to the hosts.

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