Your IP: Unknown · Your Status: ProtectedUnprotectedUnknown
Route poisoning

Route poisoning

Route poisoning definition

Route poisoning is a computer networking technique to prevent routing loops in dynamic routing protocols (such as the Routing Information Protocol or RIP) and maintain network stability.

See also: broadcast storm, spanning tree protocol, switching loop, network congestion

How route poisoning works

A routing loop is a situation where data packets circulate endlessly through routers in a network without reaching their destination. Loops can lead to increased traffic and congestion — in extreme cases, an unresolved loop may even lead to a broadcast storm.

Typically, when a router determines that a route is no longer valid, it informs the neighboring routers of the failure. In route poisoning, however, the router goes a step further — it advertises the route with an infinite metric (a set value that denotes an unusable route).

For example, the default infinite metric for the Routing Information Protocol (RIP) is 16. When a router using this protocol determines that a route has failed, it sends an update with a metric of 16 for that route, indicating that the route is unreachable.

After announcing a route as unreachable, the router typically waits for a specific hold-down timer before considering alternative paths or accepting updates for the failed route. This helps prevent transient issues from causing unnecessary route changes and consuming network resources.

Ultimate digital security

We value your privacy

This website uses cookies to provide you with a safer and more personalized experience. By accepting, you agree to the use of cookies for ads and analytics, in line with our Cookie Policy.