Fddi and Cddi

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C H A P T E R

8

Chapter Goals
• • • •

Provide background information about FDDI technology. Explain how FDDI works. Describe the differences between FDDI and Copper Distributed Data Interface (CDDI). Describe how CDDI works.

Fiber Distributed Data Interface
Introduction
The Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) specifies a 100-Mbps token-passing, dual-ring LAN using fiber-optic cable. FDDI is frequently used as high-speed backbone technology because of its support for high bandwidth and greater distances than copper. It should be noted that relatively recently, a related copper specification, called Copper Distributed Data Interface (CDDI), has emerged to provide 100-Mbps service over copper. CDDI is the implementation of FDDI protocols over twisted-pair copper wire. This chapter focuses mainly on FDDI specifications and operations, but it also provides a high-level overview of CDDI. FDDI uses dual-ring architecture with traffic on each ring flowing in opposite directions (called counter-rotating). The dual rings consist of a primary and a secondary ring. During normal operation, the primary ring is used for data transmission, and the secondary ring remains idle. As will be discussed in detail later in this chapter, the primary purpose of the dual rings is to provide superior reliability and robustness. Figure 8-1 shows the counter-rotating primary and secondary FDDI rings.

Internetworking Technologies Handbook 1-58705-001-3

8-1

Chapter 8 FDDI Transmission Media

Fiber Distributed Data Interface

Figure 8-1

FDDI Uses Counter-Rotating Primary and Secondary Rings
Primary

Secondary FDDI

Concentrator

WAN

Standards
FDDI was developed by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) X3T9.5 standards committee in the mid-1980s. At the time, high-speed engineering workstations were beginning to tax the bandwidth of existing local-area networks (LANs) based on Ethernet and Token Ring. A new LAN media was needed that could easily support these workstations and their new distributed applications. At the same time, network reliability had become an increasingly important issue as system managers migrated mission-critical applications from large computers to networks. FDDI was developed to fill these needs. After completing the FDDI specification, ANSI submitted FDDI to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), which created an international version of FDDI that is completely compatible with the ANSI standard version.

FDDI Transmission Media
FDDI uses optical fiber as the primary transmission medium, but it also can run over copper cabling. As mentioned earlier, FDDI over copper is referred to as Copper-Distributed Data Interface (CDDI). Optical fiber has several advantages over copper media. In particular, security, reliability, and performance all are enhanced with optical fiber media because fiber does not emit electrical signals. A physical medium that does emit electrical signals (copper) can be tapped and therefore would permit unauthorized access to the data that is transiting the medium. In addition, fiber is immune to electrical interference from radio frequency interference (RFI) and electromagnetic interference (EMI). Fiber historically has supported much higher bandwidth (throughput potential) than copper, although recent technological advances have made copper capable of transmitting at 100 Mbps. Finally, FDDI allows 2 km between stations using multimode fiber, and even longer distances using a single mode. FDDI defines two types of optical fiber: single-mode and multimode. A mode is a ray of light that enters the fiber at a particular angle. Multimode fiber uses LED as the light-generating device, while single-mode fiber generally uses lasers.

Internetworking Technologies Handbook

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ct840801

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Chapter 8

Fiber Distributed Data Interface FDDI Specifications

Multimode fiber allows multiple modes of light to propagate...
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