Essay: Major Components of a Router

Essay: Major Components of a Router
12/04/2011 Comments Off on Essay: Major Components of a Router Academic Papers on Information Technology,Sample Academic Papers admin

Sample Essay

The router is a device which forwards the packets to the appropriate network based on the destination address of the incoming packets. It is considered a network layer device since most of its work is performed using network layer data. A router has four major components. These components are input ports, output ports, switching fabric and the routing processor.

  1. An input port on the router provides the data link and physical layer functionality on the router. It performs the physical layer function through the transformation of electrical signals into bits. It also provides data link layer functionality by decapsulation of packets  and checking for errors. It also performs lookup and forwarding of the packets before they are sent to the switching fabric so that they are forwarded through the right output port.
  2. An output port on the router provides the same physical and data link layer functionality as the input port but in reverse order. The outgoing packets are first queued, then they are encapsulated in the data frame and sent out in the form of an electrical signal from the port.
  3. The routing processor is the core functional component of the router. It performs its functions on the network layer and enables switching of the packets based on the routing information and forwarding tables that it maintains in its memory. It also performs a number of network management functions within the router.
  4. On the other hand, the switching fabric performs the function of quickly moving packets from the input ports to the output ports by employing a fabric of micro switches. This switching fabric acts like a network within the router and is contained completely within it (Kurose 2005).

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