What is the function of Cisco LISP (Locator/ID Separation Protocol)?

Cisco LISP (Locator/ID Separation Protocol) is a network architecture and protocol designed to address challenges associated with the growth of the Internet, particularly issues related to scalability, mobility, and multi-homing. The main function of Cisco LISP is to separate the device identity (ID) from its location, enabling more efficient and flexible routing in large-scale networks.

  1. Locator/ID Separation: LISP separates the identifier (ID) and locator (routing address) functions of an IP address. This means that a device's identity (e.g., host or virtual machine) is distinct from its location in the network. This separation allows for improved scalability and mobility support.
  2. Scalability: LISP helps address the scalability challenges associated with the increasing size of the global routing table. By separating the device's identity from its location, LISP reduces the size of the routing table in the core of the network, making it more scalable.
  3. Mobility: LISP provides enhanced mobility support, allowing devices to change their network attachment points (locations) without changing their IP addresses. This is particularly useful for mobile devices or virtual machines that may move between different networks while maintaining connectivity.
  4. Multi-Homing: LISP enables devices to be multi-homed, meaning they can connect to multiple networks simultaneously. This is beneficial for redundancy, load balancing, and efficient use of network resources.
  5. Traffic Engineering: LISP allows for more flexible and efficient traffic engineering in the network by separating the device's identity from its location. This can help optimize the routing paths based on network conditions and requirements.
  6. Virtualization: LISP supports virtualization by providing a way to decouple the logical IP address space from the underlying physical network infrastructure. This allows for more efficient utilization of network resources in virtualized environments.