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In this paper we address the problem of designing a control and management plane for large packet switches. In particular, we consider the case where the forwarding plane is distributed among several line cards interconnected through a passive optical fabric. The main contribution of the paper is the discussion of issues arising when designing a unique and consistent control and management plane, and the proposal of a solution for the considered architecture. Finally, we consider the case of building an Ethernet switch, discuss implementation details and describe the experimental setup used to validate the proposed approach.
Date of Conference: 13-15 Feb. 2008