|Title||A MAPOS version 1 Extension - Node Switch Protocol
|Author||K. Murakami, M.
Network Working Group K. Murakami
Request for Comments: 2173 M. Maruyama
Category: Informational NTT Laboratories
A MAPOS version 1 Extension - Node Switch Protocol
Status of this Memo
This memo provides information for the Internet community. This memo
does not specify an Internet standard of any kind. Distribution of
this memo is unlimited.
This document describes a MAPOS extension, Node Switch Protocol, for
automatic node address assignment. MAPOS is a multiple access
protocol for transmission of network-protocol datagrams, encapsulated
in High-Level Data Link Control (HDLC) frames, over SONET/SDH. NSP
automates the HDLC address configuration of each node. Using NSP, a
node retrieves its HDLC address from the switch to which it is
MAPOS, Multiple Access Protocol over SONET(Synchronous Optical
Network)/SDH(Synchronous Digital Hierarchy), is a
protocol for transmission of HDLC frames over SONET/SDH. A SONET
switch provides multiple access capability to each node. In MAPOS,
each node has a unique HDLC address within a switch. The address is
equivalent to the port number of the switch to which the node is
connected. This document describes an extension to MAPOS, Node
Switch Protocol, which enable automatic HDLC address assignment.
First, it explains the addressing of MAPOS. Then, it describes the
NSP protocol for automatic HDLC node address assignment.
2. Node Address Format
This section describes MAPOS Version 1 address format in single and
multiple switch environment.
2.1 Address Format
In MAPOS network, each end node has a unique HDLC address. As shown
in Figure 1, the address length is 8 bits. The LSB is always 1 which
indicates the end of the field. When a SONET switch receives an HDLC
frame, it forwards the frame based on the address in the frame
In unicast, MSB is 0 and the rest of the bits are the port number to
which a node is connected. Since the LSB is always 1, the minimum and
maximum addresses are 0x01 and 0x7F, respectively. Address 0x01 is
reserved and is assigned to the control processor in a SONET switch.
In broadcast, MSB is 1 and the rest of the bits are all 1s. In
multicast, MSB is 1 and the rest of the bits, except for the LSB,
indicate the group address.
| | | | | | | | |
| |port number|1|
| +------- EA bit (always 1)
1 : broadcast, multicast
0 : unicast
Figure 1 Address format
2.2 Address in multi-switch environment
In a multi-switch environment, variable-length subnet addressing is
used. Each switch has a switch number that is unique within the
system. Subnetted node addresses consist of the switch number and the
port number to which a node is connected. The address format is "0
<switch number> <node number> 1" for a unicast address, "all 1" for
the broadcast address, and "1 <group address> 1" for a multicast
The address 0x01 is reserved and is assigned to the control processor
in the "local" switch. That is, it indicates the switch itself to
which the node is connected. The addresses of the form "0 <switch
number> <all 0> 1" are reserved, and indicates the control processor
of the switch designated by the switch number.
In Figure 2, the switch numbers are two bits long. Node N1 is
connected to port 0x3 of switch S1 numbered 0x1 (01 in binary). Thus,
the node address is 0 + 01 + 00011, that is, 00100011(0x23). Node N3
has an address 01001001(0x49), since the switch number of S2 is 0x2
(10 in binary) and the port number is 0x09. Note that all the port
numbers are odd because the LSBs are always 1.
| node |
| N1 |
+------+ +---+----+ +---+----+ +------+
| node +----+ SONET +-------+ SONET +-----+ node |
| N2 | 0x5| Switch |0x9 0x5| Switch |0x9 | N3 |
+------+ | S1 | | S2 | +------+
00100101(0x25) | 0x1 | | 0x2 | 01001001(0x49)
Figure 2 Addressing in Multiple Switch Environment
4 NSP(Node-Switch Protocol)
This section describes the NSP protocol used for automatic node
4.1 NSP protocol
NSP is introduced to provide an automatic node address assignment
function in MAPOS version 1. It reduces the administrative overhead
of node address configuration for each node and prevents troubles
such as address inconsistency and collision. When a node is connected
to a switch and receives SONET signal correctly, the node sends an
address request packet to the control processor in the local switch.
The destination address of this packet is 00000001(0x01). When the
control processor receives the packet, it replies with an address
assignment packet. The destination is the assigned node address. If
the node does not receive the address assignment packet within 5
seconds, it retransmits the address request packet. The
retransmission continues until the node successfully receives the
address assignment packet.
Whenever a node detects a transmission error such as carrier loss or
out-of-synchronization, it SHOULD send an address request packet to
the control processor and verify its current address. In addition, a
node MUST verify its address by sending address request packets every
30 seconds. The switch regards them as keep-alive packets and
utilizes them to detect the node's status. If it has not received a
request packet for more than 90 seconds, it assumes that the node
went down. In addition, it also assumes the node went down when a
switch detects a SONET signal failure.
4.2 Packet Format
The HDLC protocol field of a NSP frame contains 0xFE03 (hexadecimal)
as defined by the "MAPOS Version 1 Assigned Numbers" . The
information field contains the NSP packet as shown in Figure 3.
I command I address I
I<- 32bit ->I<- 32 bit ->I
Figure 3 NSP packet format
The command field is 32 bits long and has the following values (in
1 address request
2 address assignment
The length of the address field is 32bits. In address request
packets, the NSP address field SHOULD be filled with zeroes, although
the switch ignores it. In address assignment packets, the assigned
address is placed in the least significant byte of the field. The
rest of the field is padded with zeroes. When the switch can not
assign the address for some reason, the switch replies with a reject
command (the values is 3). The value of the address field is
4.3 Consideration for special cases
There are two special cases to consider. One is a point-to-point
connection without a switch. The other is loop-back, that is, direct
connection between the input and the output of the same port.
In the case of a point-to-point connection shown in Figure 4, a node
sends an address request packet to the other node. The destination
address is 00000001(0x01), that is usually a control processor in a
switch. When a node receives the address request, it detects the
point-to-point connection by examining both the destination address
and the command contained. Then, it MUST reply with an address
assignment packet. The assigned address MUST be 00000011(0x03). Since
both nodes send an address request to each other, both of them get
address 00000011(0x03). Since any address can be used in point-to-
point environment, there is no problem even if both of the nodes have
the same address.
---- address request ----> 0x01
0x03 <---- address assignment ----
| node +--------------------------------+ node |
0x01 <---- address request ----
---- address assignment ----> 0x03
Figure 4 Point-to-point connection
Another special case is loop-back where the output port of a node is
simply connected to its input port as shown in Figure 5. In this
case, the same mechanism as that for point-to-point can be applied
without modification. A node sends an address request packet
destined to 00000001(0x01). The node then receives the same packet.
Since the destination is 00000001(0x01), it replies with an address
assignment packet, containing the assigned address 00000011(0x03), to
the address 0000 0011(0x03). Thus, the node obtains the address
---- address request ----> 0x01
+------+ --- address assignment --> 0x03
| node + |
Figure 5 Loop-back Configuration
5. Security Considerations
Security issues are not discussed in this memo.
 Murakami, K. and M. Maruyama, "MAPOS - Multiple Access Protocol
over SONET/SDH, Version 1," RFC-2171, June 1997.
 CCITT Recommendation G.707: Synchronous Digital Hierarchy Bit
 CCITT Recommendation G.708: Network Node Interface for
Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (1990).
 CCITT Recommendation G.709: Synchronous Multiplexing Structure
 American National Standard for Telecommunications - Digital
Hierarchy - Optical Interface Rates and Formats Specification,
 Maruyama, M. and K. Murakami, "MAPOS Version 1 Assigned
Numbers," RFC-2172, June, 1997.
The authors would like to acknowledge the contributions and
thoughtful suggestions of John P. Mullaney, Clark Bremer, Masayuki
Kobayashi, Paul Francis, Toshiaki Yoshida, and Takahiro Sajima.
NTT Software Laboratories
Tokyo 180, Japan
NTT Software Laboratories
Tokyo 180, Japan