Networking

The MPLS Network: A Future-Proof Engine for Voice-Data Convergence

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Executive Summary

Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) has made it possible for data and voice to travel together through wide area networks. For its rising popularity, it is important to address new trends in network traffic and identify new prospects for business communication that are supported by MPLS. This paper discusses the evolution of MPLS. It was developed for Internet Protocol routers for matching the speed of Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) switches. ATM switches are known for their fast speed. Further, the working protocol of MPLS has been discussed. MPLS is currently the best known WAN technology. It allocates labels to individual data packets. These data packets are then read by the core on the basis of their labels. After this the labels are discarded and the packets are sent to their destination. MPLS is named multiprotocol as it works with various protocols such Frame Relay, ATM and IP. It also is now robust enough to present a platform for cloud computing and communication possibilities. The paper also discusses the uses of MPLS in situations where conventional IP routers cannot be used. These conditions include traffic engineering, Virtual Private Networks and Layer 2 transport, which is used in the OSI network stack. MPLS has multiple uses as it can provide for four different Classes of Services (CoS).

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