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RRPP Technology White Paper

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RRPP Technology White Paper
Keywords: RRPP, RRPP domain, RRPP ring, control VLAN, protected VLAN, master node,
transit node, edge node, assistant-edge node, ring group.
Abstract: The Rapid Ring Protection Protocol (RRPP) is a link layer protocol dedicated to
Ethernet rings. This document introduces H3Cs RRPP implementation, characteristics,
and typical networking schemes.
Acronyms:
Acronym Full spelling
RRPP Rapid Ring Protection Protocol
SRPT Sub Ring Packet Tunnel in Major Ring
STP Spanning Tree Protocol
VLAN Virtual Local Area Network



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Table of Contents
1 Overview........................................................................................................................................ 3
1.1 Background........................................................................................................................ 3
1.2 Benefits............................................................................................................................... 3
2 RRPP Implementation.................................................................................................................. 4
2.1 Basic Concepts in RRPP................................................................................................... 4
2.1.1 RRPP Domain......................................................................................................... 4
2.1.2 RRPP Ring............................................................................................................... 5
2.1.3 RRPP Control VLAN............................................................................................... 6
2.1.4 RRPP Protected VLAN........................................................................................... 6
2.1.5 Master Node............................................................................................................ 6
2.1.6 Transit Node............................................................................................................ 7
2.1.7 Edge Node and Assistant-Edge Node................................................................... 8
2.1.8 Primary Port and Secondary Port.......................................................................... 8
2.1.9 Common Port and Edge Port................................................................................. 9
2.2 RRPPDUs........................................................................................................................... 9
2.2.1 RRPPDU Types....................................................................................................... 9
2.2.2 RRPPDU Format................................................................................................... 11
2.3 Single Ring Fundamentals .............................................................................................. 12
2.3.1 Single-Domain Single Ring................................................................................... 12
2.3.2 Multi-Domain Single Ring..................................................................................... 17
2.4 Intersecting Ring Fundamentals..................................................................................... 18
2.4.1 Single-Domain Intersecting Rings........................................................................ 18
2.4.2 Multi-Domain Intersecting Rings.......................................................................... 19
2.4.3 SRPT State Detection Mechanism...................................................................... 20
3 Application Scenarios................................................................................................................. 27
3.1 Single-Domain Single Ring............................................................................................. 27
3.2 Multi-Domain Single Ring................................................................................................ 27
3.3 Tangent Rings.................................................................................................................. 28
3.4 Single-Domain Intersecting RRPP Rings....................................................................... 29
3.5 Multi-Domain Intersecting RRPP Rings ......................................................................... 29
3.6 RRPP in Combination with STP...................................................................................... 30

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1 Overview
1.1 Background
Nowadays, most networks use the ring structure to improve reliability. With ring
networking technologies, network devices are connected to form rings. To avoid
broadcast storms, which are common in a ring network, a loop protection mechanism
must be used.
The IEEE spanning tree protocols have been widely used for loop protection.
However, as STP topology convergence gets slower while network size is growing,
transmission performance can be degraded in a large network.
To remove the negative impact of network size on topology convergence and shorten
topology convergence time, H3C developed RRPP.
1.2 Benefits
RRPP is a link layer protocol dedicated to Ethernet rings. It can prevent broadcast
storms caused by data loops when an Ethernet ring is healthy, and rapidly restore the
communication paths between the nodes after a link is disconnected on the ring by
bringing up the backup link.
Compared with STP, RRPP has the following advantages:
Fast topology convergence within 50 ms.
Convergence time independent of Ethernet ring size.
On intersecting rings, the topology change of an RRPP ring does not cause topology
changes in the other rings, and therefore, data transmission is more stable. In
addition, RRPP supports load sharing in Ethernet rings, which improves physical link
bandwidth utilization.

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2 RRPP Implementation
2.1 Basic Concepts in RRPP
2.1.1 RRPP Domain
An RRPP domain identified by an integral ID defines a topology range calculated and
controlled by the RRPP protocol. It consists of some interconnected devices with the
same domain ID, control VLANs, and protected VLANs. A device can belong to
multiple RRPP domains.
An RRPP domain consists of the following elements:
RRPP rings
RRPP control VLANs
RRPP protected VLANs
Master nodes
Transit nodes
Edge nodes
Assistant-edge nodes
In Figure 1, Domain 1 is an RRPP domain that contains Ring 1 and Ring 2 formed by
devices S1 through S6. Ring 1 is the primary ring, where S1 is the master node and
S2, S3, and S4 are transit nodes. Ring 2 is the subring, where S6 is the master node,
and S5 is a transit node. S3 and S2 are the edge node and the assistant-edge node
respectively. The primary control VLAN and secondary control VLAN of Domain 1 are
VLAN 3 and VLAN 4 respectively.

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S1
3
S2
S3
S4
S5
S6
4
4
3 3
4
3 4
4 4
4
3 4
3 4
4
4 4
4 4 3 3
S
P
P
S
Master
Edge
Assistant
Master
Ring 1 Ring 2
Domain 1
B
B
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
RRPP Domain Outline
Major Ctrl VLAN:3
Sub Ctrl VLAN:4
S

Figure 1 A sample RRPP domain
2.1.2 RRPP Ring
Each RRPP ring corresponds to a ring-shaped Ethernet topology and is identified by
an integral ID. As described in the last section, an RRPP domain consists of a single
RRPP ring or multiple connected RRPP rings. The topology calculation is actually
based on RRPP rings.
Typically, ring topologies fall into these three types: single ring, tangent rings, and
intersecting rings. For each topology type, the RRPP domain configuration is different:
All devices on the single ring are configured to be in the same RRPP domain.
All devices on intersecting rings are also configured to be in the same RRPP
domain.
For two tangent rings, the devices on each ring are configured to be in the same
RRPP domain. That is, two tangent rings need two different RRPP domains,
one for each ring.
In an RRPP domain with intersecting rings, to achieve independent topology
calculation on each ring without affecting other rings and prevent loops, you need to
configure one ring as the primary ring and the others as subrings. The primary ring as
a whole serves as a logical node on the subrings, and protocol packets from the

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subrings are transparently transmitted through the primary ring. In this way, topology
calculation is performed on the intersecting rings as a whole. Protocol packets of the
primary ring are confined within the primary ring. The level of the primary ring is 0 and
that of subrings is 1.
For example, to configure Ring 1 in Figure 1 as the primary ring, you should set its
ring level to 0 and set the level of all the other rings in the domain, Ring 2 in this
example, to 1. By doing this, you can prevent loops in the intersecting ring topology
and ensure the connectivity between nodes.
2.1.3 RRPP Control VLAN
As described earlier, RRPP separates data traffic from RRPPDUs (RRPP packets) by
transmitting RRPPDUs in dedicated VLANs called control VLANs. An RRPP domain
is configured with one primary control VLAN and one secondary control VLAN. After
you specify a VLAN as the primary control VLAN, the VLAN whose ID is one plus the
primary control VLAN ID is configured as the secondary control VLAN automatically.
The primary control VLAN transmits the RRPPDUs of the primary ring and the EDGE-
HELLO messages of the subrings. The secondary control VLAN transmits the
RRPPDUs of the subrings except the EDGE-HELLO messages.
All the ports connecting devices to RRPP rings are assigned to control VLANs, and
only such ports can be assigned to control VLANs. As shown in Figure 1, 3 and/or 4
near a port indicate the VLAN(s) the port is assigned to. RRPP ports on the primary
ring must be assigned to both the primary control VLAN and the secondary control
VLAN; RRPP ports on the subrings can be assigned to only the secondary control
VLAN.
2.1.4 RRPP Protected VLAN
A protected VLAN is a VLAN that transmits data packets. It can contain both RRPP
ports and non-RRPP ports. A protected VLANs forwarding status is controlled by its
RRPP domain. Different RRPP domains on the same RRPP ring are configured with
different protected VLANs, and each RRPP domain controls the forwarding status of
ports in it independently.
2.1.5 Master Node
Each device on an RRPP ring is called an RRPP node. On an RRPP ring, you must

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configure only one as the master node. The master node initiates ring status
detection with the polling mechanism and makes operation decisions upon ring
topology changes. In Figure 1, S1 is the master node on the primary ring, and S6 is
the master node on the subring.
A master node can be in one of the following states:
Complete state
The master node is in the complete state if it can receive at its secondary port the
Hello packets sent out its primary port. In this case, the master node blocks the
secondary port to prevent traffic loops.
Failed state
When a link in the ring fails, the master node is in the failed state. To avoid traffic
interruption in the ring, the master node unblocks the secondary port to forward data
traffic.

Note:
The state of the master node represents the state of the whole RRPP ring. That is,
when the master node is in the complete (failed) state, the RRPP ring is also in the
complete (failed) state.

2.1.6 Transit Node
All the nodes except the master node on a ring are transit nodes. For example, in
Figure 1, S2, S3, and S4 are transit nodes on the primary ring, and S5 is a transit
node on the subring. A transit node transparently transmits Hello packets of the
master node, monitors the state of its directly connected RRPP links, and reports link
state changes (if any) to the master node to decide the actions to be taken.
A transit node can be in one of the following states depending on the states of its
primary and secondary ports:
Link-up state
When both the primary port and secondary port are up, the transit node is in the link-
up state.

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Link-down state
When either the primary port or the secondary port is down, the transit node is in the
link-down state.
Pre-forwarding state
When either the primary port or the secondary port is blocked, the transit node is in
the pre-forwarding state.
2.1.7 Edge Node and Assistant-Edge Node
In an RRPP domain, of the two nodes at which the primary ring and a subring
intersect, one is the edge node and the other is the assistant-edge node. You can
configure either of them as the edge or the assistant-edge but must ensure that the
roles of the two nodes are different. In Figure 1, S3 is the edge node, and S2 is the
assistant-edge node.
These two roles are significant only on subrings.
Edge nodes and assistant-edge nodes are special transit nodes. An edge or edge-
assistant node can be in one of the following three states depending on the state of
its edge port:
Link-up state
When the edge port is up, the node is in the link-up state.
Link-down state
When the edge port is down, the node is in the link-down state.
Pre-forwarding state
When the edge port is blocked, the node is in the pre-forwarding state.
The state transition of an edge or edge-assistant node is the same as that of a transit
node but it is triggered by the link state change of the edge port only.
2.1.8 Primary Port and Secondary Port
Of the ports that connect a node to an RRPP ring, one is the primary port and the
other is the secondary port. You can configure them as needed.
The primary and secondary ports of master nodes are different in functions. A master
node sends HELLO messages out its primary port. If it can receive these HELLO

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messages on its secondary port, the master node considers the RRPP ring as
complete and thus blocks the secondary port to avoid loops. If the master node fails
to receive these HELLO messages within the specified period, it considers the ring as
having failed and unblocks the secondary port to ensure service continuity.
The primary and secondary ports of a transit node are the same in functions.
In an RRPP domain, the primary ring is a logical node of each subring and it transmits
subring RRPPDUs (except the EDGE-HELLO messages) transparently as data traffic.
Therefore, no data packet or subring RRPPDU (except the EDGE-HELLO messages)
can pass through a blocked port on the primary ring.
2.1.9 Common Port and Edge Port
On an edge or assistant-edge node, the port connecting to the subring is called the
edge port while the two ports connecting to the primary ring are called common ports.
The link between the common port on the edge node and that on the assistant-edge
node is called the common link.
As a primary ring is considered as a logical node on its subrings, the common link is
considered as an internal link of the primary ring node. Thus, the common link state
changes are reported only to the master node of the primary ring.
In Figure 1, on the edge node S3, the port connecting to S6 is an edge port, while the
ports connecting to S4 and S2 are common ports. The link directly connecting the
edge node S3 to the assistant-edge node S2 is the common link.
2.2 RRPPDUs
2.2.1 RRPPDU Types
RRPPDU type Description
HELLO
Sent regularly by a master node to check ring
completeness. If the sent HELLO messages can
finally reach the secondary port of the master node
within the predefined period, the ring is considered
complete; if not, the ring is considered open, in
which case a link may have failed on the ring.
LINK-DOWN
Sent by a transit, edge, or edge-assistant node to
report link failure to the master node.

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RRPPDU type Description
COMMON-FLUSH-FDB
Sent by a master node to notify the transit nodes to
update their MAC address tables and ARP/ND
tables when it transitions to the failed state.
The nodes on the primary ring must update their
MAC address table and ARP/ND tables after
receiving COMMON-FLUSH-FDB messages, even if
they are from the master node on a subring.
COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
Sent by a master node to notify the transit nodes to
update their MAC address tables and ARP/ND
tables when it transitions to the complete state. The
transit nodes thus transition to the link-up state,
unblocking the temporarily blocked ports.
For the nodes on the primary ring, if the sending
master node is on a subring, they will update the
MAC address tables and ARP/ND tables, but will not
unblock the blocked ports.
EDGE-HELLO
Sent by the edge node of a subring and received by
the assistant-edge node of the same subring to
check whether the SRPTs of the subring are in good
condition.
The edge node periodically sends EDGE-HELLO
messages out the two common ports to the
assistant-edge node across the primary ring. If the
assistant-edge node receives the messages, the
SRPTs are considered as in good condition; if the
assistant-edge node does not receive the messages
within a specified period of time, the SRPTs are
considered as faulty.
MAJ OR-FAULT
Sent by an assistant-edge node to report SRPT
failure to the edge node. Upon receiving a MAJ OR-
FAULT message, the edge node blocks its edge
port.


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2.2.2 RRPPDU Format
0 7
Destination MAC Address (6 bytes)
15 23 31 39 47
Source MAC Address (6 bytes)
EtherType PRI VLAN ID Frame Length
DSAP/SSAP
0x00bb
CONTROL OUI =0x00e02b
0x99 0x0b RRPP Length
RRPP_VER RRPP Type Ring ID Domain ID
0x0000 SYSTEM_MAC_ADDR (6 bytes)
HELLO_TIMER FAIL_TIMER
0x0000 0x0000 0x00 LEVEL
RESERVED(0x000000000000)
RESERVED(0x000000000000)
RESERVED(0x000000000000)
RESERVED(0x000000000000)
RESERVED(0x000000000000)
RESERVED(0x000000000000)

Figure 2 RRPP RRPPDU format
The following table describes each field in an RRPPDU:
Field Length (in bits) Description
Destination MAC
Address
48
Destination MAC address, in the
range of 0x000FE2078217 to
0x000FE2078416.
Source Mac Address 48
Source MAC address, fixed to
0x000fe203fd75.
EtherType 8
Encapsulation type, fixed to
0x8100 indicating tagged
encapsulation.
PRI 4
Class of service (CoS) priority,
fixed to 0xe0.
VLAN ID 12
ID of the VLAN to which the
packet belongs.
Frame Length 16
Ethernet frame length, fixed to
0x48.
DSAP/SSAP 16
Destination service access
point/source service access
point, fixed to 0xaaaa.
CONTROL 8 Fixed to 0x03.

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Field Length (in bits) Description
OUI 24 Fixed to 0x00e02b.
RRPP Length 16
RRPP protocol data unit length,
fixed to 0x40.
RRPP_VER 16 RRPP version, 0x0001 currently.
RRPP Type 8
RRPPDU type:
5: HELLO
6: COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
7: COMMON-FLUSH-FDB
8: LINK-DOWN
10: EDGE-HELLO
11: MAJ OR-FAULT
Domain ID 16
ID of the RRPP ring to which the
packet belongs.
Ring ID 16
ID of the RRPP ring to which the
packet belongs.
SYSTEM_MAC_ADDR 48
Bridge MAC address of the node
sending the packet.
HELLO_TIMER 16
Hello timer setting (in seconds)
of the sending node.
FAIL_TIMER 16
Fail timer setting (in seconds) of
the sending node.
LEVEL 8
Level of the RRPP ring to which
the packet belongs.

2.3 Single Ring Fundamentals
2.3.1 Single-Domain Single Ring
This section describes how RRPP works and how ring topology converges by
analyzing the Ethernet ring status change from complete to failed, and then back to
complete.
1. Ring status detection and related operations
RRPP uses a polling mechanism to check ring completeness: the master node sends
Hello messages to the ring regularly. These Hello messages pass through each

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transit node on the ring in turn. If they can finally reach the secondary port of the
master node, the ring is considered complete. In this case, to avoid broadcast loops
on the ring, the master node keeps its secondary port blocked. Figure 3 shows a
closed RRPP ring.
Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
Master
HELLO
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
B
Single Ring Complete state
Complete state
S port blocked

Figure 3 A complete RRPP ring
2. Fault detection and related operations
Ring faults can be detected by using one of the following mechanisms:
Polling mechanism
Link down alarm mechanism
1) Polling mechanism
RRPP uses a polling mechanism to check ring faults.
With this mechanism, a master node sends Hello messages to the ring regularly.
These Hello messages pass through each transit node on the ring in turn. If they fail
to reach the secondary port of the master node within a specified period of time, the
ring is considered open, in which case at least one link may have failed on the ring. In
this case, the master node transitions to the failed state, unblocks the secondary port,
and sends COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB messages out its primary and secondary ports
to instruct all the transit nodes to update their MAC address table entries and

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ARP/ND entries.
2) Link down alarm mechanism
A node is always monitoring its own port link status, and takes immediate actions
upon detecting a failed port.
When a master nodes primary port goes down, the master node is able to
sense the link fault by itself. It immediately unblocks its secondary port, and
sends a COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB message out its secondary port to instruct all
the transit nodes to update their MAC address table entries and ARP/ND entries.
When one port on a transit node goes down, the transit node sends a LINK-
DOWN message out the other RRPP port that is still up to notify the master
node, as shown in Figure 4. Upon receiving the message, the master node
unblocks its secondary port and transitions to the failed state. To avoid packet
direction errors due to the topology change, the master node updates its own
MAC address table and ARP/ND entries and sends a COMMON-FLUSH-FDB
message out its primary and secondary ports to instruct all the transit nodes to
update their MAC address table entries and ARP/ND entries. See Figure 5 for
the process of a master node transitioning from the complete state to the failed
state.
Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
Master
LINK-DOWN
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
B
Transit Send LINK-DOWN to Master
Link failure

Figure 4 A transit node sends a LINK-DOWN message to the master node

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Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
Master
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
Master Transfer to Failed State
Transfer to Failed State
Unblock S port
COMMON-FLUSH-FDB

Figure 5 The master node transitions to the failed state
The link-down alarm mechanism provides faster fault protection than the polling
mechanism. However, if LINK-DOWN messages are lost on the way to the master
node, the link faults will be detected later by the master node using the polling
mechanism. If the master node fails to receive on its secondary port the Hello
messages it sends out within a period of time specified by the Fail timer, it considers
the ring topology as faulty, and then takes related actions as described earlier.
3. Fault recovery detection and related operations
When a failed port on a transit node recovers, the master node cannot be notified of
the recovery immediately. Hence, the master ports secondary port is still up. If the
transit node transitions to the Link-Up state at once, a temporary loop will be created
on the ring. Therefore, when a Link-Down transit nodes primary and secondary ports
are both recovered, the transit node blocks them immediately and transitions to the
pre-forwarding state, as shown in Figure 6. At this point, the ring is not recovered yet.
The master node initiates the ring recovery process.

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Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
Master
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
Transit block restored port temporarily
at Failed State
B
B
Transfer to preforwarding
state & block restored port

Figure 6 A transit node blocks its recovered ports and transitions to the pre-forwarding state
When all the links on the ring recover and the master node is able to receive its own
Hello packets again, it blocks the secondary port and transitions back to the complete
state. Because of the ring topology change, the master node needs to update its
MAC address table entries and ARP/ND entries, and sends COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
messages to instruct all the transit nodes to update their MAC address table entries
and ARP/ND entries. When receiving the COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB message from
the master node, the transit nodes in the pre-forwarding state transition to the Link-Up
state. Thus the ring is recovered, as shown in Figure 7.

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Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
Master
COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
B
Master transfer to Complete state
Transfer to Link-Up State
& Unblock port
Transfer to Complete state
& block S port

Figure 7 How a ring recovers
In case the COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB messages fail to reach a transit node, the
transit node in the pre-forwarding state unblocks the blocked port automatically,
updates its MAC address table entries and ARP/ND entries and transits to the link-up
state if it fails to receive any COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB messages from the master
node within the period of time specified by the Fail timer.
2.3.2 Multi-Domain Single Ring
If traffic of multiple VLANs exists on an RRPP ring, you can configure multiple RRPP
domains on the RRPP ring, with each domain transmitting traffic for different VLANs
(protected VLANs). In this way, data traffic of different VLANs is transmitted along
different paths on the ring, thus achieving load sharing.

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Figure 8 Multi-domain single ring
As shown in Figure 8, Ring 1 is configured as the primary ring in both Domain 1 and
Domain 2. Domain 1 and Domain 2 have different protected VLANs. In Domain 1,
Device A is configured as the primary node on Ring 1, while in Domain 2, Device B is
configured as the primary node on Ring 1. Under such configurations, traffic of
different VLANs is transmitted along different paths.
2.4 Intersecting Ring Fundamentals
2.4.1 Single-Domain Intersecting Rings
In a single-domain intersecting rings topology, the implementation of the primary ring
and the fault detection mechanism used by the subrings master nodes are the same
as those used on a single-ring topology. The difference is that the SRPT state
detection mechanism is used on a multi-ring topology to prevent data loops on the
subrings when both SRPTs are disconnected. Before the master node on a subring
unblocks its secondary port, the edge node blocks its edge port, thus preventing
broadcast loops on the subrings. For more information about the SRPT state
detection mechanism, refer to SRPT State Detection Mechanism.
Additionally, when the nodes on the primary ring receive COMMON-FLUSH-FDB or
COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB messages from a subring, they must update their MAC
address table entries and ARP/ND entries. However, the COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
messages from a subring cannot make a transit node on the primary ring to unblock
its temporarily-blocked port.

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Device A Device B
Device C Device D
Device E
Edge node
Master node
Transit node
Assistant edge node
Domain 1
Ring 1
Ring 2
Master node

Figure 9 Single-domain intersecting rings
2.4.2 Multi-Domain Intersecting Rings
If traffic of multiple VLANs exists in an intersecting RRPP rings topology, you can
configure multiple RRPP domains for the intersecting rings, with each domain
transmitting traffic for the specified protected VLANs. Each RRPP domain in the multi-
domain topology works in the same way as a single domain does. In this way, data
traffic of different VLANs is transmitted along different paths on the ring, thus
achieving load sharing.
Device A Device B
Device C Device D
Device E
Ring 1
Ring 2 Domain 1 Domain 2

Figure 10 Multi-domain intersecting rings
As shown in Figure 10, Ring 1 and Ring 2 are respectively configured as the master
ring and subring in both Domain 1 and Domain 2. They have different protected

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VLANs. In Domain 1, Device A is configured as the master node of Ring 1, while in
Domain 2, Device D is configured as the master node of Ring 1. In both Domain 1
and Domain 2, Device E is configured as the master node of Ring 2. However, for
Domain 1 and Domain 2, the primary and secondary ports on Device E are different.
In this way, traffic of different VLANs can be transmitted along different paths in the
primary ring and subrings, thus achieving load sharing on the intersecting rings.
2.4.3 SRPT State Detection Mechanism
1. Introduction to SRPT state detection mechanism
SRPTs are tunnels for subring packets on the primary ring. The primary ring as a
whole serves as a logical node on the subrings, and protocol packets from the
subrings are transparently transmitted through the primary ring. The primary ring
forwards protocol packets (except EDGE-HELLO packets) from the subrings as data
packets.
Each subring has two SRPTs. As shown in Figure 11, the two SRPTs for subrings
Ring 2 and Ring 3 are S3-S2 and S3-S4-S1-S2. When the primary ring is healthy, the
secondary port of its master node is blocked, in which case only the S3-S2 tunnel is
available. When fault occurs on the S3-S4-S1-S2 tunnel, the S3-S2 tunnel is
available; when fault occurs on the S3-S2 tunnel, the S3-S4-S1-S2 tunnel is available.
In other words, of a subrings two SRPTs, only one of them is available at any point of
time, thus preventing data loops on the primary ring for subring protocol packets.
When both the SRPTs of a subring fail, and the subrings master node fails to receive
its own Hello packets within the period of time specified by the Fail timer, the
subrings master node unblocks its secondary port. In this way, the subring can
restore communication to the maximum extent without creating data loops.
This works fine in a common RRPP network topology but not in a dual-homed RRPP
ring topology. As shown in Figure 11, the two subrings Ring 2 and Ring 3 are
interconnected through the edge node and assistant-edge node and form a loop
naturally. Therefore, data loops are unavoidable when the secondary ports on the
master nodes of the subrings are unblocked after the two SRPTs on Ring 1 went
down. The arrows in the figure indicate traffic directions.

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Figure 11 Loops in a dual-homed ring topology without SRPT state detection
To address the problem, the SRPT state detection mechanism is introduced, which is
carried out by the edge and assistant-edge nodes together. When the edge node
detects that both the SRPTs are down, it blocks the edge ports on the edge nodes
before the secondary ports on the master nodes of the subrings are both unblocked.
Thus, loops are avoided. Figure 12 shows how loops are removed with the SRPT
state detection mechanism.

Figure 12 Loop removal in a dual-homed ring topology with SRPT state detection

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2. SRPT state detection process
In the SRPT state detection mechanism, the edge node initiates SRPT state
detection and determines the actions to take; the assistant-edge node monitors SRPT
state and notifies the edge node of SRPT state changes, if any. The following
subsections describe how the mechanism works.
1) Detecting SRPT state
The edge node of a subring periodically sends EDGE-HELLO messages destined for
the assistant-edge node out the two ports connecting the subring to the SRPTs. The
EDGE-HELLO messages travel through each node on the SRPTs, as shown in
Figure 13. If at least one SRPT is normal for transmitting subring protocol packets,
the assistant-edge node can receive these EDGE-HELLO messages within the
specified period of time. If the two SRPTs are both disconnected and the subring
protocol packets cannot travel through the primary ring, the assistant-edge node
cannot receive these EDGE-HELLO messages within the specified period of time.
Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
P
S
Master
Edge
Assistant
Master
Major ring Sub ring
EDGE-HELLO
B
B
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S

Figure 13 The edge node sends EDGE-HELLO messages
2) Blocking the edge port of the edge node when the SRPTs are disconnected
Upon detecting that the two SRPTs are both disconnected, the assistant-edge node
sends MAJ OR-FAULT messages out the edge port to the edge node through the
subring. If the subring is normal, the edge node can receive these MAJ OR-FAULT

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messages. Upon receiving the MAJ OR-FAULT messages, the edge node blocks its
edge port as shown in Figure 14. If the subring fails, the edge port of the edge node
will not be blocked.
MAJ OR-FAULT messages are sent periodically. If the edge node receives them, its
edge port stays blocked; if the edge node fails to receive any MAJ OR-FAULT
message within the specified period of time, its edge port is unblocked automatically.
Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
P
S
Master
Edge
Assistant
Master
Major ring Sub ring
MAJ OR-FAULT
B
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
B

Figure 14 The edge node blocks its edge port upon receiving MAJ OR-FAULT messages
3) Transitioning to the failed state when the subring fails
As the master node on the subring cannot receive the HELLO messages it sent out
due to disconnection of the two SRPTs, it unblocks its secondary port and transitions
to the failed state, as shown in Figure 15.

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Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
P
S
Master
Edge
Assistant
Master
Major ring Sub ring
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
B

Figure 15 The subrings master node transitions to the failed state due to SRPT disconnection
4) SRPT recovery
When the primary ring recovers, the SRPTs also recover. Therefore, the assistant-
edge node stops sending MAJ OR-FAULT messages.
In this case, if the subring is normal, its master node can receive its own Hello
packets again, and thus blocks its secondary port and transitions to the complete
state, as shown in Figure 16.

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Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
P
S
Master
Edge
Assistant
Master
Major ring Sub ring
HELLO
B
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S
B

Figure 16 SRPT recovery
After the subring is recovered, its master node sends COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
messages out the primary port. Upon receiving the COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
messages, the edge node unblocks its edge port if the port is blocked, as shown in
Figure 17. Thus, communication in the entire network is recovered.
Data Packet
Control Packet
S
P
P
S
Master
Edge
Assistant
Master
Major ring Sub ring
COMPLETE-FLUSH-FDB
B
B
P - Primary Port
- Secondary Port
- Blocked Port
S

Figure 17 The edge node of the subring unblocks the edge port

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If a fault is present on the subring when the SRPTs recover, the subring cannot be
recovered. In this case, the master node of the subring does not send COMPLETE-
FLUSH-FDB messages and the blocked edge port of the edge node will be
unblocked only after the Fail timer expires.
3. Ring group
In SRPT state detection, the edge node and assistant-edge node of subrings
respectively sends and receives EDGE-HELLO packets frequently. As shown in 1.
Figure 11 in the multi-ring dual-homed topology, if you configure S2 and S3 as the
edge node and assistant-edge node of both Ring 2 and Ring 3, S2 needs to send
EDGE-HELLO packets for both Ring 2 and Ring 3, while S3 needs to receive EDGE-
HELLO packets for both Ring 2 and Ring 3. The more subrings are configured, the
more EDGE-HELLO packets will occur in the network, thus increasing the CPU load
of the devices.
To reduce Edge-Hello traffic, you can configure a group of subrings on the edge node
or assistant-edge node. A ring group configured on the edge node is called an edge
node ring group, and a ring group configured on an assistant-edge node is called an
assistant-edge node ring group. In an edge node ring group, only an active subring
with the smallest domain ID and ring ID sends EDGE-HELLO packets; in an
assistant-edge node ring group, a random active subring receives the EDGE-HELLO
packets and passes the information to other active subrings. In this way, after subring
groups are configured on the edge node and assistant-edge node, only one subring
in each group sends/receives EDGE-HELLO packets, thus reducing the device CPU
load significantly.
You must configure a device as the edge node of these subrings, and another device
as the assistant-edge node of these subrings. Additionally, these subrings must have
the same SRPTs.

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3 Application Scenarios
3.1 Single-Domain Single Ring
Device A Device B
Device C Device D
Master node
Transit node
Domain 1
Ring 1
Transit node
Transit node

Figure 18 Network diagram for a single-domain single-ring network
A single-domain single-ring network has only one ring. Therefore, you need to define
only one RRPP domain and one RRPP ring.
A single-domain single-ring network features fast response to topology changes and
fast topology convergence.
3.2 Multi-Domain Single Ring

Figure 19 Network diagram for a multi-domain single-ring network

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A multi-domain single-ring network has only one ring, but multiple VLANs for the
purpose of load sharing. Multiple RRPP domains are configured in the network, each
having its own protected VLANs. In addition, an RRPP ring has different master
nodes in different RRPP domains or has the same master node but different
primary/secondary ports in different RRPP domains. Therefore, the protected VLANs
of different RRPP domains have different logical topologies.
3.3 Tangent Rings
Ring 1
Device A
Device B
Device C
Device E
Master node
Domain 1
Transit node
Device D
Transit node
Transit node
Ring 2
Device F
Master node
Transit node
Domain 2

Figure 20 Network diagram for a tangent-ring network
A tangent-ring network contains two or more rings. Every two rings have only one
common node. For each ring, you are required to define an independent RRPP
domain.
The tangent-ring topology is suitable for large-scale networks that require networks at
the same level to be managed as independent domains.

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3.4 Single-Domain Intersecting RRPP Rings
Device A Device B
Device C Device D
Device E
Edge node
Master node
Transit node
Assistant edge node
Domain 1
Ring 1
Ring 2
Master node

Figure 21 Networking diagram for single-domain intersecting rings
A single-domain intersecting-ring network contains two or more rings. Every two rings
have two common nodes. In this case, you can define one RRPP domain. In the
domain, configure a ring as the primary ring and the other rings as subrings.
A typical single-domain intersecting-ring topology is dual-homed rings where the
master node of a subring is dually uplinked to the primary ring through the edge node
and the assistant-edge node for uplink backup.
3.5 Multi-Domain Intersecting RRPP Rings
Device A Device B
Device C Device D
Device E
Ring 1
Ring 2 Domain 1 Domain 2

Figure 22 Networking diagram for multi-domain intersecting rings

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A multi-domain intersecting-ring network contains two or more rings. Every two rings
have two common nodes. To achieve load sharing when data traffic of multiple
VLANs exists in the network, you can configure multiple RRPP domains in the
network, each having its own protected VLANs. In addition, an RRPP ring has
different master nodes in different RRPP domains or has the same master node but
different primary/secondary ports in different RRPP domains. In this way, the
protected VLANs of different RRPP domains can have different logical topologies.
3.6 RRPP in Combination with STP
RRPP is mutually exclusive with STP on a port because RRPP may conflict with STP
in port state calculation. An RRPP ring can be connected to an STP ring only in the
tangent mode, where no common ports exist between rings.

Figure 23 RRPP in combination with STP





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