FSA - Flow State Aware Routers

Unanswered Question
Sep 26th, 2007

Not sure if this is the best place to post this - if not please forgive me...


My customer has a vendor stopping by to brief a new technology that is supposedly more efficient than TCP. Looking at their charts I've concluded that their technology relies heavily on flow state aware routers (FSA). The only company I found on the net that claims to have FSA routers is http://www.anagran.com/. Their FR-1000 flow router seamlessly interoperates with any other existing traditional IP routers in the network, but has a number of significant technological advantages over today's packet routers.


Has Anagran?s marketing dept. created a new buzz word for technology that already exists or is this something new?


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Joseph W. Doherty Wed, 09/26/2007 - 16:23

"new technology that is supposedly more efficient than TCP"


Certainly possible, but some of TCP inefficiencies are by design to avoid congestion collapse and to play nicely with older TCP standards. Often technologies "better" than TCP don't concern themselves with these two issues.


"technology that already exists or is this something new? "


The technology isn't really new, the implementation on one combined platform might be. Often such equipment is compared to "stock" older equipment without any additional tuning. Usually out-of-the-box, the new stuff performs much better than the old stuff. Enable a few extra config options on the old, much of the improvement of the new may disappear.


One issue of flow based architectures, they often melt down when exposed to things like worms that generate an artificial number of new flows.

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