Using Service Grammar to Diagnose BGP Configuration Errors
Xiaohu Qie, Princeton University; Sanjai Narain, Telcordia Technologies
Often network components work correctly, yet end-to-end services
don't. This can happen when configuration parameters of components are
set to incorrect values. Configuration is a fundamental operation for
logically integrating components to set up end-to-end services.
Configuration errors frequently arise because transforming end-to-
end service requirements into component configurations is inherently
difficult. Such transformations are largely performed in a manual and
localized fashion, resulting in high cost of network operations.
The Service Grammar technique has been developed to solve
the configuration error diagnosis problem and, more generally, to
formalize the process of building complex systems via configuration.
At its core is a Requirements Language that contains
global, high-level constraints upon configuration parameters. These
are derived from identifying the notion of "correct configuration"
associated with different protocols. These notions are composed to
create system-wide requirements on architecture and policies. A
Diagnosis Engine checks if constraints in the Requirements
Language are true given definite component configurations and
recursively checks composite requirements.
This paper describes an application of Service Grammar to
diagnosing BGP configuration errors. As BGP architecture and policies
differ widely from one network to another, it is not possible using
previous techniques to check if router configurations implement the
intended requirements. Our tools enable administrators to
specify system-wide, network-specific requirements and check if they
are correctly implemented by component configurations.
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