Control and Data planes in a router

Every now and then I feel the need to write a very basic article, explaining the foundations and getting the terminology straight. Today I’m trying to explain the control and data planes in a router (or a layer-3 switch, depending on your marketing bias). Your opinions, fixes, corrections and all other comments are most welcome.


  1. YES YES YES! There should be more of these articles coming. There are more than CCIEs reading here.

  2. Hi; as always this article is much appreciated. I don't mean to be nitpicking here but shouldn't the following line be corrected?

    "They can pre-compute the actual forwarding data for every destination and store them in the forwarding table that can be directly used by the CONTROL plane."

  3. @Anonymous: thanks for the heads-up. I'll do my best :)

    @Netadminion: You're absolutely right. Thanks for the correction, I've fixed the text.


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