We will now look at route collectors that we mentioned earlier. A route collector is usually a router or a unique system running BGP software. It gathers routing information from service provider routers at the exchange point and it peers with each ISP using BGP. A route collector does not forward packets. And a route collector does not announce any prefixes to any ISPs--it simply collects the routing information available from all members and the purpose really is to provide a public view of the routing information available at the exchange point it's useful for existing members to check functionality of their BGP filters if the right collector has prefixes that they are not seeing perhaps as a miss configuration someone it's useful for prospective members to check the value of joining the exchange point and so a very useful marketing tool for the exchange point and the exchange point members and it's useful for the internet Operations community for troubleshooting for example through the traceroute org service the diagram shows how a route collector fits into an exchange part it connects the Ethernet switch like all the ISP members would connect to the Ethernet switch and all the ISP members will peer BGP with the right collector all that needs to be is a router which is the most common set up or a UNIX system running BGP it doesn't need a great deal of memory it only holds the exchange point routes it doesn't need any packet forwarding requirements because it doesn't forward any packets peers ebgp with every exchange point member accepts everything gives nothing it only needs a private a s number and it connects to the exchange point transit lab there may well be a back end connection a second interface this interface would be globally routed and perhaps connect to the exchange point website for public access to see the routing information that it has collected. Most exchange points now implement some form of route collector but indeed these days it is a route server, which we'll discuss next. We've talked about the benefits: that it's a great public relations tool, very useful for troubleshooting and it has really q uite unsophisticated requirements--it simply runs BGP.
© Produced by Philip Smith and the Network Startup Resource Center, through the University of Oregon.
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