OSPF: Overview

OSPF is a link state routing protocol that takes multiple points of information from other neighbors in the network and builds a complete diagram of the network with link costs so it can determine the best path to a network.

OSPF uses the SPF algorithm to compute best path, based on all the data that’s been passed along by other OSPF neighbors in the routing domain.

All of the data collected is referred to as the link state database (LSDB).

OSPF also uses a design methodology using numbered areas for deterministic network locations, where network routes/prefixes can be advertised accordingly, all connecting to a central area 0 which is considered the backbone of the network.


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