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Spantasmic spanning tree protocols (STP, RSTP and MST)  (617)
Spantasmic is a lean, robust implementation of layer 2 spanning tree protocols that allow the use of redundant network paths without creating loops. Spantasmic includes support for the IEEE 802.1d STP specification, as well as enhancements for rapid reconfiguration of spanning trees (RSTP) when a bridged port fails (IEEE 802.1w), and virtual local area network (VLAN) topologies using multiple spanning trees (MST) (IEEE 802.1s). Spantasmic is a member of the Switchcraft family of layer 2 protocol products offered by TeamF1. It also includes a bridging framework with built in forwarding and an address resolution logic-based filtering database which can optionally stand-in for a switch fabric chipset implementing similar functionality.

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Spantasmic layer 2 spanning tree protocols (STP, RSTP and MST) are designed for real-time and embedded operating systems including VxWorks and embedded Linux. It provides path redundancy while preventing undesirable loops in a network. The STP algorithm enables a bridge to use the most efficient path when faced with multiple paths, and when the best path fails, to recalculate the network and find the next best path. Spantasmic is an ideal fit for LAN and MAN applications, where multiple bridged links without loops are required, as well as in mission critical network equipment designs that require support for high availability (HA).

Spantasmic also implements RSTP which has a much faster convergence and reconfiguration time in the event of a change in network topology. This can be critical in networks carrying delay-sensitive traffic such as voice and video.

With the advent of Metro Ethernet networks, different VLANs commonly have different connectivity and redundancy requirements, and can have different underlying physical links. This asymmetrical connectivity creates a requirement for the infrastructure to be able to execute separate STP instances for different VLANs, which result in the ability to have a given physical port perform forwarding for one VLAN while doing blocking for another. To address this, Spantasmic adds the facility for VLAN bridges to use multiple spanning trees (MST), providing for traffic belonging to different VLANs to flow over potentially different paths within the virtual bridged LAN. Spantasmic includes an implementation of the IEEE 802.1s multiple spanning trees specification which enables VLANs to be grouped into a spanning tree instance, provide for multiple forwarding paths for data traffic, and also enable load balancing.

For implementations that do not include a switch fabric or external bridge implementation, Spantasmic also includes a software bridging component to forward unicast and broadcast frames received on a given port to the appropriate port(s), which reduces the overall traffic in a bridged LAN and provides greater effective bandwidth with its filtering abilities. The filtering engine drops frames that arrive on a port and are destined to hosts in the same LAN, thus reducing the overhead of forwarding. The port that a frame is forwarded to is decided based on internal address resolution logic (ARL) table that maps MAC addresses to individual LANs connected to the bridge. The bridging component may be used in its software only form, or may be interfaced to switch fabric hardware to enable fast data-paths, while the control logic resides in software.

Spantasmic is especially optimized for real-time and embedded operating systems including support for the VxWorks and Linux native network driver models, enhanced memory management, and abstractions that are lean, yet full featured. Spantasmic is well integrated with the VxWorks and Linux build & install methodology, including integration with the IDE and also validated with VxWorks based Platform for Network Equipment including the built-in software bridge.

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Wind River, a wholly owned subsidiary of Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC), is a world leader in embedded and mobile software. Wind River has been pioneering computing inside embedded devices since 1981 and its technology is found in more than 500 million products