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virtual routing and forwarding (VRF)

Virtual Routing and Forwarding (VRF) is a routing technology with which multiple instances of a routing table coexist on a router. Unlike conventional routers that work with multiple routing tables, Virtual Routing and Forwarding works with VFR instances and one routing table.

Since the VRF instances are independent of each other, the same or overlapping IP addresses can be used for routing without conflict. Each individual VRF instance can use the complete address space of the routing table or be composed of different IP addresses. This technique can be used to segment network paths and separate network traffic from each other. However, the VRF technique has another table for forwarding the data packets to downstream nodes.

VRF technique eliminates the need for encryption and authentication and increases the network security. This technology is also used by Internet service providers to set up their own virtual private networks (VPN).

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Englisch: virtual routing and forwarding - VRF
Updated at: 20.07.2011
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Translations: DE