Learning About a Change in the Network

A router knows very quickly whether the neighbor, which may also be the next logical hop, is dead because the router no longer receives Hello protocol messages.

The routing process sends out a message immediately when it identifies a problem, without waiting for the update timer to expire. This is known as an incremental update. The update contains only the relevant information. The router also remains silent if there is no change in the network.

The incremental update improves convergence time and also reduces the amount of information that needs to be sent across the network. The network overhead on the physical media is eased, and the potential throughput of the network is improved.

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