Networking & Wireless forum


Router Broadcast Storm

by hms91 / January 16, 2012 11:36 PM PST

I live in an apartment complex that has a shared internet provider and have hooked my own Medialink router up to the system. It's a relatively new router, just a few months old, and had fantastic reviews online. However, a few days ago the internet crashed so we couldn't even connect to the internet via ethernet cord into the plugs around the apartment and the internet company was called. They came and tracked the problem down to my router and said that it was creating a "broadcast storm" and blocking the entire internet. They unplugged it, did something on their laptop, replugged it and the internet was back up for about an hour before crashing again. My question is how is this possible? All three of the tech guys said they'd never seen this happen before. Is there a way to fix this? Is my router completely destroyed?


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All Answers

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Router Broadcast Storm
by Web_JD / January 18, 2012 12:13 PM PST
In reply to: Router Broadcast Storm

Hi Hms91,

Dont worry.. What ever they done is fine.. Here is why its happening

Internetwork-level broadcasts are Media Access Control (MAC)-level
broadcast frames with a special destination internetwork address that
informs the router that the packet is to be forwarded to all other
networks except the network on which it was received. Routers must be
configured to pass internetwork-level broadcast traffic. A MAC-level
broadcast frame is used to reach all the hosts on a network. Routers,
unlike bridges, do not forward MAC-level broadcast traffic. However, to
reach all the hosts on an internetwork, some routable protocols support
the use of internetwork-level broadcasts.
The inherent danger of forwarding internetwork-level
broadcasts is the possibility of an internetwork-level broadcast storm
in which a host malfunctions and continuously sends out the same
internetwork-level broadcast packet. If the routers forward this
traffic, the result is that all the hosts on the internetwork process
each broadcast frame, possibly crippling the entire internetwork.
The NetBIOS over IPX broadcast is an internetwork-level
broadcast. NetBIOS applications on an IPX internetwork use a NetBIOS
over IPX broadcast to perform name registration, resolution, and
release. When the NetBIOS over IPX broadcast packet is received by an
IPX router, the router records the network on which the packet was
received in the NetBIOS over IPX header. Thus, the internetwork path is
recorded in the NetBIOS over IPX header as it traverses the IPX
Before being forwarded, the IPX router checks the
internetwork path information to prevent the forwarding of the NetBIOS
over IPX broadcast onto a network on which it has already traveled. This
prevents the broadcast from looping and causing more broadcast traffic.
As an additional safeguard, NetBIOS over IPX broadcast packets can only
propagate across eight networks using seven routers. At the eighth
router, the packet is discarded without notifying the sending host. This
is known as a silent discard. For more information about NetBIOS over
IPX broadcasts.

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What ?
by bill012 / January 20, 2012 4:27 AM PST
In reply to: Router Broadcast Storm

Normally I ignore posts that contain wrong information but this one pushes way too far.

This is all outdated garbage most likely cut and paste from a wiki.

Even discussing IPX much less netbios over IPX is such a joke. IPX has been a dead protocol for many years. It is unlikely you can even find a consumer router that supports it. Most commercial routers if it even supports it is disabled by default.

Your router could have a hardware problem although its very rare. You can also cause broadcast loops with cabling but most the time it will crash your router long before it causes a issue outside you place. Now you can get creative and bridge ports between your wireless and your neighbors and cause all kinds of issues but most ISP that have a clue protect themselves from a intentional attack. Hard to say exactly what was wrong but IPX is not the answer

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