Patent Number: 6,310,882

Title: High speed switch architecture using separate transmit and receive channels with independent forwarding tables

Abstract: A switching architecture for very high data rates which is placed between a port connecting to a fiber optic gigabit ethernet link and a two Gbit/sec backplane of a concentrator. A port connects to the link for both receiving and transmitting data packets from and to the link. A first FTE receives a data packet from the port, and analyzes the data packet to determine if the data packet should be forwarded to the backplane of the concentrator. If the data packet is to be forwarded, the first FTE sends the data packet to a backplane connection for connecting to the backplane of the network concentrator. A second FTE is connected to the backplane connection. The second FTE receives a data packet from the backplane connection, and analyzes the data packet in a manner similar to the first FTE to determine if a packet should be forwarded to the port. The process of the second FTE with regard to the data packets is substantially similar to the process of the first FTE, except that it is determined whether or not the data packets from the backplane should be forwarded to the port. This switch architecture therefore uses separate transmit and receive channels with independent forwarding tables. The first and second FTE's can be substantially identical, and are preferably switch engine ASIC's (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) designed for a lower data rate.

Inventors: Lorenz; Gary D. (Acton, MA), Thompson; Bruce W. (Mount Vernon, NH), Kapoor; Harsh (Boxboro, MA), Weaver; Charles R. (Leominster, MA), Myrick; Brian J. (Boxboro, MA)

Assignee: 3Com Corporation

International Classification: H04L 12/56 (20060101); H04L 012/46 ()

Expiration Date: 10/30/2018