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Flow Aggregation for the IP Flow Information Export (IPFIX) Protocol
RFC 7015

Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                       B. Trammell
Request for Comments: 7015                                    ETH Zurich
Category: Standards Track                                      A. Wagner
ISSN: 2070-1721                                              Consecom AG
                                                               B. Claise
                                                     Cisco Systems, Inc.
                                                          September 2013

  Flow Aggregation for the IP Flow Information Export (IPFIX) Protocol

Abstract

   This document provides a common implementation-independent basis for
   the interoperable application of the IP Flow Information Export
   (IPFIX) protocol to the handling of Aggregated Flows, which are IPFIX
   Flows representing packets from multiple Original Flows sharing some
   set of common properties.  It does this through a detailed
   terminology and a descriptive Intermediate Aggregation Process
   architecture, including a specification of methods for Original Flow
   counting and counter distribution across intervals.

Status of This Memo

   This is an Internet Standards Track document.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Further information on
   Internet Standards is available in Section 2 of RFC 5741.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at
   http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc7015.

Trammell, et al.             Standards Track                    [Page 1]
RFC 7015                    IPFIX Aggregation             September 2013

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2013 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents
   1. Introduction ....................................................3
      1.1. IPFIX Protocol Overview ....................................4
      1.2. IPFIX Documents Overview ...................................5
   2. Terminology .....................................................5
   3. Use Cases for IPFIX Aggregation .................................7
   4. Architecture for Flow Aggregation ...............................8
      4.1. Aggregation within the IPFIX Architecture ..................8
      4.2. Intermediate Aggregation Process Architecture .............12
           4.2.1. Correlation and Normalization ......................14
   5. IP Flow Aggregation Operations .................................15
      5.1. Temporal Aggregation through Interval Distribution ........15
           5.1.1. Distributing Values across Intervals ...............16
           5.1.2. Time Composition ...................................18
           5.1.3. External Interval Distribution .....................19
      5.2. Spatial Aggregation of Flow Keys ..........................19
           5.2.1. Counting Original Flows ............................21
           5.2.1. Counting Distinct Key Values .......................22
      5.3. Spatial Aggregation of Non-key Fields .....................22
           5.3.1. Counter Statistics .................................22
           5.3.2. Derivation of New Values from Flow Keys and
                  Non-key fields .....................................23
      5.4. Aggregation Combination ...................................23
   6. Additional Considerations and Special Cases in Flow
      Aggregation ....................................................24
      6.1. Exact versus Approximate Counting during Aggregation ......24
      6.2. Delay and Loss Introduced by the IAP ......................24
      6.3. Considerations for Aggregation of Sampled Flows ...........24
      6.4. Considerations for Aggregation of Heterogeneous Flows .....25
   7. Export of Aggregated IP Flows Using IPFIX ......................25
      7.1. Time Interval Export ......................................25
      7.2. Flow Count Export .........................................25
           7.2.1. originalFlowsPresent ...............................26

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