Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol BOF (vrrp)

Minutes of the Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol BOF

Reported by: Bob Hinden


I. Introduction

II. Requirements for a Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol

III. Review of current Internet drafts of VRRP

IV. Discuss the need for a Standard

V. Intellectual Property Issues

VI. Review Draft Charter

VII. Assess consensus for creating VRRP Working Group

I. Introduction

Bob Hinden welcomed people to the BOF. He gave a brief intro to VRRP. He also announced that co-chair Peter Kline was not able to attend the BOF.

The purpose of this working group is to define and develop a standard virtual router redundancy protocol for IPv4 and IPv6. The BOF is to determine if there is interest in forming a VRRP Working Group.

Ninety-one people attended the Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol BOF.

II. Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol Overview

Presented charts showing examples about how VRRP worked.

A virtual router redundancy protocol is a protocol that allows several routers on a multi-access link to utilize the same virtual IP address. One router will be elected as a master with the other routers acting as backups in case of the failure of the master router. The primary motivation to using a virtual router redundancy protocol is that host systems may be configured (manually or via DHCP) with a single default gateway, rather than running an active routing protocol. The protocol should also support the ability to load share traffic when both routers are up.

III. Current Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol Drafts

<draft-whipple-vrrp-00.txt>, November 1996

Original VRRP Draft

<draft-hinden-vrrp-00.txt>, March 1997

Run VRRP directly under IP (instead of directly over wire).

VRRP messages sent to an IP Multicast address (instead of to Multicast MAC).

Use Unicast MAC address as the Virtual MAC (instead of multicasting all host -> router traffic).

Simplified the protocol to sue one message type and fewer states in finite state machine.

Fully specified all state transitions and actions.

Added capability for IPSEC authentication.

IV. Issues

· Use New or Original Draft?

· Use IPSEC or add MD5 Authentication?

· Control over when switch back happens?

· Separate Protocol or ICMP

· Approach for IPv6?

· Other changes?

General agreement to use new internet draft.

Discussion about need for VRRP for IPv6. IPv6 neighbor unreachability detection (NUD) function might suffice.

V. Need for Standard

Users need fast switch over to backup router

Existing Host implementations work slowly or not at all

Web Farms are important application for VRRP

Useful any time servers are co-located

Question was raised that VRRP should not be a standard because it was really a hack because hosts do not implement router discovery correctly. Ross Callon noted that it was actually considerably more efficient to have a protocol like VRRP were the control traffic is between the routers instead of every hosts on a link sending lots of messages to each router determining if the router was still up. Router discovery (or IPv6 neighbor unreachably detection) was not intended to be used for this kind of quick switch over.

VI. IPR Issues

Cisco has proprietary protocol called HSRP

Cisco may have IPR relating to VRRP redundancy mechanisms

Issue could be resolved by:

· Cisco making IPR available to IETF

· Licensing IPR to organizations implementing VRRP IETF standard.

Jeff Burgan (Internet AD) announced that Cisco had sent a letter to the IESG stating that they believed that VRRP infringed with the patent they hold. It said that cisco would be willing license the technology for a one time fee in a non-discriminatory manner. They also said that they would submit an internet draft to the VRRP group by the end of April.

VII. Goals for Charter

Define and develop a standard virtual router redundancy protocol for IPv4 and IPv6.

Develop VRRP MIB(s).

Separate specifications will be developed for IPv4 and IPv6.

The internet draft "Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol" <draft-whipple-vrrp-00.txt> and <draft-hinden-vrrp-00.txt> will be used as the basis of virtual router redundancy protocol.

Intellectual property issues regarding the technology to develop a virtual router redundancy protocol will be identified and addressed.

VIII. Schedule

April 97 Hold BOF to determine if working group should be formed.

April 97 Charter Working Group

May 97 Issue new Internet Drafts for IPv4/IPv6 versions of the protocol.

July 97 Resolve any intellectual property issues regarding protocol.

August 97 Finalize Internet Drafts and submit to the IESG for proposed standard status.Need to add a MIB to schedule.IX. Create a Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol Working Group?

There was a discussion about need for a standard and if a formal working group is required. The impact of intellectual property made this more complicated and increases the need for a working group and a standard.

The chair took a poll of the attendees and there was a consensus that a working group should be formed.

The chair will update the charter and submit it to the IESG for approval.