[LibreQoS] routing protocols and daemons

Dave Taht dave.taht at gmail.com
Wed Oct 26 17:38:22 EDT 2022

On Wed, Oct 26, 2022 at 1:53 PM Herbert Wolverson via LibreQoS
<libreqos at lists.bufferbloat.net> wrote:
> My name is Herbert, and I'm an OSPF addict... seriously, I love OSPF. Right down to stub sites, not-so-stubby sites, and isolating IP blocks within a site into "stub" nets and ensuring they are aggregated properly. I should probably go outside more...


My name is dave, and I think all routing protocols should have evolved
much better to elegantly meet the real world problems they were trying
to solve, than they have.

To avoid burying the lede, to what extent does OSPF still rely on
multicast? How well can it carry ipv6 now? What extensions are common
in the real WISP world?

BGP needs a few more napkins.

RIP was a VERY good start but we drew the wrong lessons from its
failures, and the super-duper-trendline towards centralized
controllers inherent in OSPF and ISIS that happened in the 90s that
doesn't scale anywhere near as I'd like.

I liked the rise of meshy 802.11 networks, I know the author of AODV
well (charlie perkins is arguably one of the fathers of mesh
networking, far too few have read his books from the 90s). And I've
been involved in the "battlemesh" group for many years with those
trying to make 'em work better on networks such as guifi,
wlan-slovinia, etc.

Backstory. Back in 07, in Nicaragua, I was (stupidly) trying to get
ipv6 to work over nanostation m2s or m5s I forget which, and the basic
option was to run two copies of the ospf daemon to manage 4 and 6
independently. I only had 32MB of memory and it didn't fit, so I
started looking for alternatives, found babel, corresponded with (and
frankly thoroughly annoyed) the author, and starting giving it a go.
It transported 4 and 6 in the same packets, was tiny, was
distance-vector (thus, I thought, more a match for bgp), and (to me)
most importantly, solved the ipv4 and ipv6 routing problems in the
same daemon at the same time, and actually fit into less memory than
ospf did. It was good enough it seemed, to deploy to a few hundred
routers without having to play major tricks with areas and stubs and
so on.

Babel is so simple that toke wrote a near complete implementation from
the spec, in python, during a string of extremely boring IETF
meetings, over the course of a week. He later took on the bird port.
Over the years we've wedged most (but not all) of the key features I
thought a meshy wireless routing protocol should have, with
implementations in a standalone daemon, bird, and FRR. (there was a
quagga port at one point too. I forget what happened to toke's python

https://www.rfc-editor.org/rfc/rfc8966.html babel
https://arxiv.org/abs/1403.0445 source specific routing
https://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/rfc8967/ HMAC authentication
RTT metric
 unicast hellos

Missing is BFD support, and the slightest bit of traction outside of
the shrinking battlemesh communities.

Althea is using babel and fq_codel in their blockchain routing thing
(I reserve comment), and I don't know where else, besides as part of
wireguard tunnels, babel is being used today. But I'm rather
interested in how OSPF evolved since I last touched it, and what use
cases it is good at and fails at?

> On Wed, Oct 26, 2022 at 3:29 PM Dave Taht via LibreQoS <libreqos at lists.bufferbloat.net> wrote:
>> OK, since I'm getting such great updates on the state of the wisp
>> world, far more in a few days than I've had in 10 years... and btw, no
>> need to leap on dr science guy research questions like mine if you
>> have like, towers flooding or the phone ringing off the hook....
>> What routing protocols are in use nowadays? BGP, yes, and it seems
>> ospf is popular?
>> How about ISIS?
>> I figure babel has zero traction or awareness despite being mandated
>> by the ietf homenet working group.
>> Secondly, do you rely on BGP based on the edge router or use it in
>> software (frr? quagga? bird?). Using RPKI? Push FIBs anywhere? (route
>> 666 in particular)
>> Similar question related to the IGP protocol in use, where do you rely
>> on it, vs all the tunnels you have, on what kinds of hardware?
>> I note that robert at some point, somewhere, pointed out how fq_codel
>> saved his bacon when there was a major routing mishap (as there is no
>> congestion control in ospf), and I'd like to hear more of that story.
>> BATMAN has been mentioned. There's other wireless protocols I've liked
>> - OLSR for example...
>> Nobody knows what lies underneath many consumer wireless meshes
>> although it looks like 802.11s is a starting point, none, so far as I
>> know interoperate across brands.
>> --
>> This song goes out to all the folk that thought Stadia would work:
>> https://www.linkedin.com/posts/dtaht_the-mushroom-song-activity-6981366665607352320-FXtz
>> Rip Van Winkle COO, TekLibre, LLC
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This song goes out to all the folk that thought Stadia would work:
Dave Täht CEO, TekLibre, LLC

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