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          13 14 15 rfc6457                                              
Network Working Group                                    T. Takeda (Ed.)
Internet Draft                                                       NTT
Category: Informational                                        A. Farrel
                                                      Old Dog Consulting
Expires: June 4, 2011                                   December 4, 2010

         PCC-PCE Communication and PCE Discovery Requirements for
                     Inter-Layer Traffic Engineering



   The Path Computation Element (PCE) provides functions of path
   computation in support of traffic engineering in Multi-Protocol Label
   Switching (MPLS) and Generalized MPLS (GMPLS) controlled networks.

   MPLS and GMPLS networks may be constructed from layered client/server
   networks. It is advantageous for overall network efficiency to
   provide end-to-end traffic engineering across multiple network
   layers. PCE is a candidate solution for such requirements.

   Generic requirements for a communication protocol between Path
   Computation Clients (PCCs) and PCEs are presented in RFC 4657, "PCE
   Communication Protocol Generic Requirements". Generic requirements
   for a PCE discovery protocol are presented in RFC 4674, "Requirements
   for Path Computation Element (PCE) Discovery".

   This document complements the generic requirements and presents
   detailed sets of PCC-PCE communication protocol requirements and PCE
   discovery protocol requirements for inter-layer traffic engineering.

Status of this Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted to IETF in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF), its areas, and its working groups.  Note that
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   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   The list of current Internet-Drafts can be accessed at

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   The list of Internet-Draft Shadow Directories can be accessed at

Table of Contents

   1. Introduction...................................................3
   1.1. Terminology..................................................3
   2. Motivation for PCE-Based Inter-Layer Path Computation..........4
   3. PCC-PCE Communication and Discovery Requirements for Inter-
      Layer Traffic Engineering......................................5
   3.1. PCC-PCE Communication........................................5
   3.1.1. Control of Inter-Layer Path Computation....................5
   3.1.2. Control of The Type of Path to be Computed.................5
   3.1.3. Communication of Inter-Layer Constraints...................7
   3.1.4. Adaptation Capability......................................7
   3.1.5. Cooperation Between PCEs...................................7
   3.1.6. Inter-Layer Diverse paths..................................7
   3.2. Capabilities Advertisements for PCE Discovery................8
   3.3. Supported Network Models.....................................8
   4. Manageability considerations...................................8
   4.1. Control of Function and Policy...............................8
   4.2. Information and Data Models..................................9
   4.3. Liveness Detection and Monitoring............................9
   4.4. Verifying Correct Operation..................................9
   4.5. Requirements on Other Protocols and Functional Components....9
   4.6. Impact on Network Operation.................................10
   5. Security Considerations.......................................10
   6. IANA Considerations...........................................10
   7. Acknowledgments...............................................11
   8. References....................................................11
   8.1. Normative References........................................11
   8.2. Informative References......................................11
   9. Authors' Addresses............................................12

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1. Introduction

   The Path Computation Element (PCE) defined in [RFC4655] is an entity
   that is capable of computing a network path or route based on a
   network graph, and applying computational constraints.

   A network may comprise multiple layers. These layers may represent
   separation of technologies (e.g., packet switch capable (PSC), time
   division multiplex (TDM), lambda switch capable (LSC)) into GMPLS
   regions [RFC3945], separation of data plane switching granularity
   levels (e.g., PSC-1 and PSC-2, or VC4 and VC12) into GMPLS layers
   [RFC5212], or a distinction between client and server networking
   roles (e.g., commercial or administrative separation of client and
   server networks). In this multi-layer network, Label Switched Paths
   (LSPs) in lower layers are used to carry upper-layer LSPs. The
   network topology formed by lower-layer LSPs and advertised to the
   higher layer is called a Virtual Network Topology (VNT) [RFC5212].

   In layered networks under the operation of Multiprotocol Label
   Switching Traffic Engineering (MPLS-TE) and Generalized MPLS (GMPLS)
   protocols, it is important to provide mechanisms to allow global
   optimization of network resources. That is, to take into account all
   layers, rather than optimizing resource utilization at each layer
   independently. This allows better network efficiency to be achieved.
   This is what we call Inter-layer traffic engineering. This includes
   mechanisms allowing computation of end-to-end paths across layers
   (known as inter-layer path computation), and mechanisms for control
   and management of the VNT by setting up and releasing LSPs in the
   lower layers [RFC5212].

   Inter-layer traffic engineering is included in the scope of the PCE
   architecture [RFC4655], and PCE can provide a suitable mechanism for
   resolving inter-layer path computation issues. The applicability of
   the PCE-based path computation architecture to inter-layer traffic
   engineering is described in [RFC5623].

   This document presents sets of requirements for communication between
   path computation clients (PCCs) and PCEs using the PCE communication
   protocol (PCEP), and for PCE discovery for inter-layer traffic
   engineering. It supplements the generic requirements documented in
   [RFC4657] and [RFC4674].

1.1. Terminology

   LSP: Label Switched Path.

   LSR: Label Switching Router.

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   PCC: Path Computation Client, any client entity (component,
   application or network node) requesting a path computation to be
   performed by a Path Computation Element.

   PCE: Path Computation Element, an entity that is capable of computing
   a network path or route based on a network graph and applying
   computational constraints.

   PCEP: PCE Communication Protocol, a protocol for communication
   between PCCs and PCEs.

   Although this requirements document is an informational document not
   a protocol specification, the key words "MUST", "MUST NOT",
   "RECOMMENDED",  "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be
   interpreted as described in RFC 2119 [RFC2119] for clarity of
   requirement specification.

2. Motivation for PCE-Based Inter-Layer Path Computation

   [RFC4206] defines a way to signal an MPLS or a GMPLS LSP with an
   explicit route in a higher layer of a network that includes hops
   traversed by LSPs in lower layers of the network. The computation of
   end-to-end paths across layers is called Inter-Layer Path

   An LSR in the higher layer might not have information on the topology
   of lower layers, particularly in an overlay or augmented model, and
   hence might not be able to compute an end-to-end path across layers.

   PCE-based inter-layer path computation consists of relying on one or
   more PCEs to compute an end-to-end path across layers. This could
   rely on a single PCE path computation where the PCE has topology
   information about multiple layers and can directly compute an end-to-
   end path across layers considering the topology of all of the layers.
   Alternatively, the inter-layer path computation could be performed as
   a multiple PCE computation where each member of a set of PCEs has
   information about the topology of one or more layers, but not all
   layers, and collaborate to compute an end-to-end path.

   Consider a two-layer network where the higher-layer network is a
   packet-based IP/MPLS or GMPLS network and the lower-layer network is
   a GMPLS-controlled optical network. An ingress LSR in the higher-
   layer network tries to set up an LSP to an egress LSR also in the
   higher-layer network across the lower-layer network, and needs a path
   in the higher-layer network. However, suppose that there is no TE
   link between border LSRs, which are located on the boundary between
   the higher-layer and lower-layer networks, and that the ingress LSR

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   does not have topology visibility in the lower layer. If a single-
   layer path computation is applied for the higher layer, the path
   computation fails. On the other hand, inter-layer path computation is
   able to provide a route in the higher layer and a suggestion that a
   lower-layer LSP be setup between border LSRs, considering both layers
   as TE topologies.

   Further discussion of the application of PCE to inter-layer path
   computation can be found in [RFC5623].

3. PCC-PCE Communication and Discovery Requirements for Inter-Layer
   Traffic Engineering

   This section sets out additional requirements specific to the
   problems of multi-layer TE that are not covered in [RFC4657] or

3.1. PCC-PCE Communication

   PCEP MUST allow requests and replies for inter-layer path

   This requires no additional messages, but implies the following
   additional constraints to be added to PCEP.

3.1.1. Control of Inter-Layer Path Computation

   A request from a PCC to a PCE MUST support the inclusion of an
   optional indication of whether inter-layer path computation is
   allowed. In the absence of such an indication, the default is that
   inter-layer path computation is not allowed.

3.1.2. Control of The Type of Path to be Computed

   The PCE computes and returns a path to the PCC that the PCC can use
   to build a higher-layer or lower-layer LSP once converted to an
   Explicit Route Object (ERO) for use in RSVP-TE signaling. There are
   two options [RFC5623].

   - Option 1: Mono-layer path. The PCE computes a "mono layer" path,
     i.e., a path that includes only TE links from the same layer.

   - Option 2: Multi-layer path. The PCE computes a "multi-layer" path,
     i.e., a path that includes TE links from distinct layers [RFC4206].

   It may be necessary or desirable for a PCC to control the type of
   path that is produced by a PCE. For example, a PCC may know that it
   is not possible for technological or policy reasons to signal a

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   multi-layer path and that a mono-layer path is required, or the PCC
   may know that it does not wish the layer border node to have control
   of path computation. In order to make this level of control possible,
   PCEP MUST allow the PCC to select the path types to be computed, and
   that may be returned, by choosing one or more from the following

   - A mono-layer path that is specified by strict hop(s). The path may
     include virtual TE link(s).

   - A mono-layer path that includes loose hop(s).

   - A multi-layer path that can include the path (as strict or loose
     hops) of one or more lower-layer LSPs not yet established.

   The path computation response from a PCE to a PCC MUST report the
   type of path computed, and where a multi-layer path is returned, PCEP
   MUST support the inclusion, as part of end-to-end path, of the path
   of the lower-layer LSPs to be established.

   If a response message from a PCE to PCC carries a mono-layer path
   that is specified by strict hops but includes virtual TE link(s), or
   includes loose hop(s), or carries a multi-layer path that can include
   the complete path of one or more lower-layer LSPs not yet
   established, the signaling of the higher-layer LSP may trigger the
   establishment of the lower-layer LSPs (triggered signaling). The
   triggered signaling may increase the higher-layer connection setup
   latency. An ingress LSR for the higher-layer LSP, or a PCC, needs to
   know whether triggered signaling is required or not.

   A request from a PCC to a PCE MUST allow indicating whether triggered
   signaling is acceptable or not.

   A response from a PCE to a PCC MUST allow indicating whether the
   computed path requires triggered signaling or not.

   Note that a PCE may not be able to distinguish virtual TE links from
   regular TE links. In such cases, even if a request from a PCC to a
   PCE indicates that triggered signaling is not acceptable, a PCE may
   choose virtual TE links in path computation. Therefore, when a
   network uses virtual TE links and a PCE is not able to distinguish
   virtual TE links from regular TE links, it MUST be understood that a
   PCE may choose virtual TE links even if a request from a PCC to a PCE
   indicates triggered signaling is not acceptable.

   Also note that an ingress LSR may be present in multiple layers.
   Thus, when a mono-layer path is requested or supplied, PCEP MUST be
   able to indicate the required/provided path layer.

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3.1.3. Communication of Inter-Layer Constraints

   A request from a PCC to a PCE MUST support the inclusion of
   constraints for a multi-layer path. This includes control over which
   network layers may, must, or must not be included in the computed
   path. Such control may be expressed in terms of the switching types
   of the layer networks.

   Furthermore, it may be desirable to constrain the number of layer
   boundaries crossed (i.e., the number of adaptations performed on the
   end-to-end path), so PCEP SHOULD include a constraint or objective
   function to minimize or cap the number of adaptations on a path, and
   a mechanism to report that number when a path is supplied.

   The path computation request MUST also allow for different objective
   functions to be applied within different network layers. For example,
   the path in a packet-network may need to be optimized for least delay
   using the IGP metric as a measure of delay, while the path in an
   under-lying TDM network might be optimized for fewest hops.

3.1.4. Adaptation Capability

   It MUST be possible for the path computation request to indicate the
   desired adaptation function at the end points of the lower-layer LSP
   that is being computed. This will be particularly important where the
   ingress and egress LSR participate in more than one layer network but
   may not be capable of all associated adaptations.

3.1.5. Cooperation Between PCEs

   When each layer is in scope of a different PCE, which only has access
   to the topology information of its layer, the PCEs of each layer need
   to cooperate to perform inter-layer path computation. In this case,
   communication between PCEs is required for inter-layer path
   computation. A PCE that behaves as a client is defined as a PCC

   PCEP MUST allow requests and replies for multiple PCE inter-layer
   path computation.

3.1.6. Inter-Layer Diverse paths

   PCEP MUST allow for the computation of diverse inter-layer paths. A
   request from a PCC to a PCE MUST support the inclusion of multiple
   path requests, with the desired level of diversity at each layer
   (link, node, SRLG).

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3.2. Capabilities Advertisements for PCE Discovery

   In the case where there are several PCEs with distinct capabilities
   available, a PCC has to select one or more appropriate PCEs. For that
   purpose, the PCE discovery mechanism MAY support the disclosure of
   some detailed PCE capabilities. A PCE MAY (to be consistent with the
   above text and RFC4674) be able to advise the following inter-layer-
   path-computation-related PCE capabilities:

   - Support for inter-layer path computation
   - Support for mono-layer/multi-layer paths
   - Support for inter-layer constraints
   - Support for adaptation capability
   - Support for inter-PCE communication
   - Support for inter-layer diverse path computation

3.3. Supported Network Models

   PCEP SHOULD allow several architectural alternatives for interworking
   between MPLS and GMPLS-controlled networks: overlay, integrated and
   augmented models [RFC3945], [RFC5145], [RFC5146].

4. Manageability considerations

4.1. Control of Function and Policy

   An individual PCE MAY elect to support inter-layer computations and
   advertise its capabilities as described in the previous sections. PCE
   implementations MAY provide a configuration switch to allow support
   of inter-layer path computations to be enabled or disabled. When the
   level of support is changed, this SHOULD be re-advertised.

   However, a PCE MAY also elect to support inter-layer computations,
   but not to advertise the fact, so that only those PCCs configured to
   know of the PCE and its capabilities can use it.

   Support for, and advertisement of support for, inter-layer path
   computation MAY be subject to policy and a PCE MAY hide its inter-
   layer capabilities from certain PCCs by not advertising them through
   the discovery protocol, and not reporting them to the specific PCCs
   in any PCEP capabilities exchange. Further, a PCE MAY be directed by
   policy to refuse an inter-layer path computation request for any
   reason including, but not limited to, the identity of the PCC that
   makes the request.

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4.2. Information and Data Models

   PCEP extensions to support inter-layer computations MUST be
   accompanied by MIB objects for the control and monitoring of the
   protocol and of the PCE that performs the computations. The MIB
   objects MAY be provided in the same MIB module as used for general
   PCEP control and monitoring  [PCEP-MIB] or MAY be provided in a new
   MIB module.

   The MIB objects MUST provide the ability to control and monitor all
   aspects of PCEP relevant to inter-layer path computation.

4.3. Liveness Detection and Monitoring

   No changes are necessary to the liveness detection and monitoring
   requirements as already embodied in [RFC4657]. It should be noted,
   however, that inter-layer path computations might require extended
   cooperation between PCEs (as is also the case for inter-AS and inter-
   area computations) and so the liveness detection and monitoring
   SHOULD be applied to each PCEP communication and aggregated to report
   the behavior of an individual PCEP request to the originating PCC.

   In particular, where a request is forwarded between multiple PCEs
   neither the PCC nor the first PCE can monitor the liveness of all
   PCE-PCE connections or of the PCEs themselves. In this case, suitable
   performance of the original PCEP request relies on each PCE operating
   correct monitoring procedures and correlating any failures back to
   the PCEP requests that are outstanding. These requirements are no
   different from those for any cooperative PCE usage, and are expected
   to be already covered by general, and by inter-AS and inter-area
   implementations. Such a procedure is specified in [RFC5441]. In
   addition, [RFC5886] specifies mechanisms to gather various state
   metrics along the path computation chain.

4.4. Verifying Correct Operation

   There are no additional requirements beyond those expressed in
   [RFC4657] for verifying the correct operation of the PCEP. Note that
   verification of the correct operation of the PCE and its algorithms
   is out of scope for the protocol requirements, but a PCC MAY send the
   same request to more than one PCE and compare the results.

4.5. Requirements on Other Protocols and Functional Components

   A PCE operates on a topology graph that may be built using
   information distributed by TE extensions to the routing protocol
   operating within the network. In order that the PCE can select a
   suitable path for the signaling protocol to use to install the inter-

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   layer LSP, the topology graph must include information about the
   inter-layer signaling and forwarding (i.e. adaptation) capabilities
   of each LSR in the network.

   Whatever means are used to collect the information to build the
   topology graph, the graph MUST include the requisite information. If
   the TE extensions to the routing protocol are used, these SHOULD
   satisfy the requirements as described in [RFC5212].

4.6. Impact on Network Operation

   The use of a PCE to compute inter-layer paths is not expected to have
   significant impact on network operations if the upper layer Traffic
   Engineering practices are aware of the frequent changes that might
   occur in the VNT. It should also be noted that the introduction of
   inter-layer support to a PCE that already provides mono-layer path
   computation might change the loading of the PCE and that might have
   an impact on the network behavior especially during recovery periods
   immediately after a network failure.

   On the other hand, it is envisioned that the use of inter-layer path
   computation will have significant benefits to the operation of a
   multi-layer network including improving the network resource usage
   and enabling a greater number of higher-layer LSPs to be supported.

5. Security Considerations

   Inter-layer traffic engineering with PCE may raise new security
   issues when PCE-PCE communication is done between different layer
   networks for inter-layer path computation. Security issues may also
   exist when a single PCE is granted full visibility of TE information
   that applies to multiple layers.

   The formal introduction of a VNT Manager component as described in
   [RFC5623] provides the basis for the application of inter-layer
   security and policy.

   It is expected that solutions for inter-layer protocol extensions
   will address these issues in detail.

6. IANA Considerations

   This Informational document makes no requests for IANA action.

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7. Acknowledgments

   We would like to thank Kohei Shiomoto, Ichiro Inoue, Dean Cheng,
   Meral Shirazipour, Julien Meuric, and Stewart Bryant for their useful
   comments. Thanks to members of ITU-T Study Group 15 Question 14 for
   their constructive comments during the liaison process.

8. References

8.1. Normative References

   [RFC2119] Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to indicate
             requirements levels", RFC 2119, March 1997.

   [RFC3945] Mannie, E., "Generalized Multi-Protocol Label Switching
             Architecture", RFC 3945, October 2004.

   [RFC4206] Kompella, K., and Rekhter, Y., "Label Switched Paths (LSP)
             Hierarchy with Generalized Multi-Protocol Label Switching
             (GMPLS) Traffic Engineering (TE)", RFC 4206, October 2005.

8.2. Informative References

   [RFC4655] A. Farrel, JP. Vasseur and J. Ash, "A Path Computation
             Element (PCE)-Based Architecture", RFC 4655, September

   [RFC4657] J. Ash, J.L Le Roux et al., " Path Computation Element
             (PCE) Communication Protocol Generic Requirements", RFC
             4657, September 2006.

   [RFC4674] JL Le Roux et al., "Requirements for Path Computation
             Element (PCE) Discovery", RFC 4674, September 2006.

   [RFC5145] K. Shiomoto, "Framework for MPLS-TE to GMPLS Migration",
             RFC 5145, March 2008.

   [RFC5146] K. Kumaki et al., "Interworking Requirements to Support
             Operation of MPLS-TE over GMPLS Networks", RFC 5146, March

   [RFC5212] K. Shiomoto et al., "Requirements for GMPLS-Based Multi-
             Region and Multi-Layer Networks (MRN/MLN)", RFC 5212, July

   [RFC5623] E. Oki et al., "Framework for PCE-Based Inter-Layer MPLS
             and GMPLS Traffic Engineering", RFC 5623, September 2009.

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   [PCEP-MIB] A. Koushik, and E. Stephan, "PCE communication protocol
             (PCEP) Management Information Base", draft-ietf-pce-pcep-
             mib (work in progress).

   [RFC5441] JP. Vasseur (Ed.), "A Backward-Recursive PCE-Based
             Computation (BRPC) Procedure to Compute Shortest
             Constrained Inter-Domain Traffic Engineering Label Switched
             Paths", RFC 5441, April 2009.

   [RFC5886] JP. Vasseur (Ed.), "A Set of Monitoring Tools for Path
             Computation Element (PCE)-Based Architecture", RFC 5886,
             June 2010.

9. Authors' Addresses

   Eiji Oki
   University of Electro-Communications
   Tokyo, Japan
   Email: oki@ice.uec.ac.jp

   Jean-Louis Le Roux
   France Telecom R&D,
   Av Pierre Marzin,
   22300 Lannion, France
   Email: jeanlouis.leroux@orange-ftgroup.com

   Kenji Kumaki
   KDDI Corporation
   Garden Air Tower
   Iidabashi, Chiyoda-ku,
   Tokyo 102-8460, JAPAN
   Email: ke-kumaki@kddi.com

   Adrian Farrel
   Old Dog Consulting
   Email: adrian@olddog.co.uk

   Tomonori Takeda
   3-9-11 Midori-cho,
   Musashino-shi, Tokyo 180-8585, Japan
   Email: takeda.tomonori@lab.ntt.co.jp

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