Subject: Re: NetBSD-based repeater
To: Chris Jones <>
From: Erik E. Fair <>
List: tech-net
Date: 02/09/1999 13:30:05
A LAN terminology nit:

repeater - electrically (or optically) regenerates a LAN signal. Does not
grok packets, collisions, or anything else; just takes care of a fading
signal in a big LAN.

bridge - a protocol-independent packet store & forward device, forwards
everything it hears.

learning bridge - as above, but performs filtering by "learning" which
Ethernet stations are on the same wires, and does not forward "local"

router - (formerly known as a "gateway" in the Internet world), a
protocol-dependent packet store & forward device. Only forwards
non-broadcast packets directed to it.

switch - usually, this means a learning bridge.

It's not possible to turn a general purpose computer system with two or
more ethernet interfaces into a repeater.

Most bridges today are "learning" bridges. Switches, too.

If you really want to do a NetBSD bridge, you should think about
implementing the IEEE 1009 bridge protocol (I think that's the number),
too. However, for the limited scenario you're talking about, this is not

	yours for more clearly defined communication,

	Erik <>