[AG-TECH] VPCscreen, Multicast and TTL
c.willing at uq.edu.au
Thu Apr 1 09:24:34 CDT 2010
On 01/04/2010, at 11:40 PM, Philippe d'Anfray wrote:
> I tried using just vic with a multicast address between "our" two
> It appears that the threshold for the TTL here is... 35 (!)
> (below the video gets lost somewhere)
Good - thats more evidence to support the broken ttl theory.
> If the routers use the policy I read here
> ....."The IP multicast routing protocol uses the *Time To Live (TTL)*
> field of IP datagrams to decide how "far" from a sending host a given
> multicast packet should be forwarded.".....
> Then the TTL is used as an "a priori scope" (and not only as a hop
> it is normal that we receive nothing even if the number of hops
> the two sites here is only 8.
Yes, the general idea is that each router subtracts 1 from the
incoming multicast packet before sending it onward and when the ttl
falls to 0, the packet is dropped. So, in theory, packets that start
with a ttl of 16 would survive 16 hops before being discarded.
Multicast traffic doesn't always flow the same path as unicast traffic
between any two sites so counting hops with normal unicast tools is
only an estimate. Administrators can also impose policy to change
Anyway, I think I've found the cause in the vpcscreen code and will
apply a simple minded fix for testing. Would you be able to test it? I
can't easily replicate your problem here to confirm that the fix
works. If you are able to help with the testing, could you confirm
that you're using Ubuntu 9.10 and whether you're using 32 or 64bit
version please, so that I can build the appropriate version for you?
> Christoph Willing a écrit :
>>> * With VPCscreen only, all packets corresponding to the video
>>> stream are
>>> given a TTL of 16
>>> * With VPCscreen and a Video Producer I can see packets with a TTL
>>> of 16
>>> and others with a TTL of 127
>>> Only those with a TTL of 127 can be received outside the site.
>> Although it is clearly wrong that vpcscreen's ttl is somehow reset to
>> 16 even when you explicitly set it to 127, I would nevertheless
>> that a ttl of 16 is more than sufficient for most multicast sessions
>> within a country - try an ordinary ping to one of your regular
>> destinations - does it take more than 16 hops? So, although there is
>> something wrong with vpcscreen, I think the issue is made worse by
>> some router misconfiguration somewhere in your area (perhaps wrongly
>> passing only multicast traffic with ttl of, say 32).
>> How to fix vpcscreen? I had a quick look through the source code for
>> obvious problems yesterday and found one potential issue but haven't
>> had a chance to investigate it yet - maybe in the next few days.
>> BTW you could confirm that the reduced ttl is actually the cause of
>> your original problem with vpcscreen by running vic (which works as
>> expected with multicast, I think?) with a lower ttl too - does it
>> exhibit the same problem of not reaching the destination when you set
>> its ttl to 16?
Christoph Willing +61 7 3365 8316
QCIF Access Grid Manager
University of Queensland
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