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Routing v/s Routed Protocols in Computer Network

The Network Layer of the OSI Model is responsible for providing logical addressing, which routers use to select best path for routing packets. There are two types of packets used at this layer :

  1. Data Packets – The user data is transferred in the inter-network by these data packets. Routed protocols are those protocols which support such data traffic. Examples of routed protocols are IPv4, IPv6 and AppleTalk.
  2. Route Update Packets – The information about the networks connected to all the routers is updated to the neighbouring routers through route update packets. Routing protocols are the ones that are responsible for sending them. Examples of routing protocols are RIP(Routing Information Protocol), EIGRP(Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol) and OSPF(Open Shortest Path First).

Now let’s take an real-life analogy to better understand the difference between routed and routing protocols. Suppose you want to go to your home after your semester examinations. You book a cab or take a bus to your home. In the path of your journey, you encounter several sign boards which help you take proper or best path, or in case of a cab, Google Maps will help you in choosing the best route. In this analogy, consider yourself as the DATA, the bus or cab as the ROUTED PROTOCOL and the sign boards or the GPS installed in your driver’s phone as the ROUTING PROTOCOL. Similarly, in a network routers use routing protocols to determine the best path for a packet to travel through the inter-network more efficiently. Routed protocols are assigned to an interface and determine the method of delivering the packet. Now, lets move on to the different types of routing protocols. Abbreviations – IGP – Interior Gateway Protocol EGP – Exterior Gateway Protocol RIP – Routing Information Protocol IGRP – Interior Gateway Routing Protocol OSPF – Open Shortest Path First ISIS – Intermediate System to Intermediate System EIGRP – Enhanced Interior Gateway Routing Protocol BGP – Border Gateway Protocol References – Todd Lammle e-book Wikipedia

Types of routing protocols :

The main uses of routing protocols are:


Types of routed protocols :

The main uses of routed protocols are:

Advantages of Routing Protocols:

  1. Efficient Network Utilization: Routing protocols help in the efficient utilization of network resources by selecting the best path for data transmission based on factors such as network congestion, bandwidth, and latency.
  2. Scalability: Routing protocols can scale to accommodate large and complex networks. They can dynamically adapt to network changes such as new devices, link failures, and changes in network topology.
  3. Robustness: Routing protocols can provide robustness to the network by automatically rerouting data in case of link failures, congestion or other network issues.
  4. Flexibility: Routing protocols are flexible and can accommodate a variety of network topologies, including hub-and-spoke, mesh, and hybrid.

Advantages of Routed Protocols:

  1. End-to-End Communication: Routed protocols enable end-to-end communication between devices on a network, irrespective of the underlying network topology.
  2. Interoperability: Routed protocols facilitate interoperability between devices and network types, allowing communication between devices running different network protocols.
  3. Addressing: Routed protocols provide addressing schemes that allow devices to identify and communicate with each other across the network.
  4. Reliability: Routed protocols ensure reliable delivery of data by providing error checking and correction mechanisms, ensuring that data is transmitted without errors.

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