If you are studying OSPF you will learn that OSPF uses LSA type 3 for inter-area routers and LSA type 5 for external prefixes that are redistributed into OSPF.
OSPF can do summarization but it’s impossible to summarize within an area. This means we have to configure summarization on an ABR or ASBR. OSPF can only summarize our LSA type 3 and 5.
If you want summarization for OSPF you will have to configure it yourself. I will show you how to do this for inter-area prefixes and external prefixes. Let’s start with an example:
Look at the topology above. If we don’t use summarization (which is the default) there will be a LSA for every specific prefix. If we have a link failure in area 1 then R1 (our ABR) will flood a new type 3 summary LSA and this change has to be propagated throughout all our OSPF areas. Since the LSDB will change our OSPF routers they will have to re-run the SPF algorithm which takes time and CPU power.
If we use summarization things will be different. I can create a summary on R1 to summarize the different type 3 summary LSAs. Instead of sending a LSA for 188.8.131.52 /24 and 184.108.40.206 /24 I could send 220.127.116.11 /8 or something alike.
If a link failure occurs in area 1 nothing will change for area 0 and area 2 since they don’t have the specific 18.104.22.168 /24 prefix in their LSDB but the 22.214.171.124 /8 summary. Nothing will change in their LSDB so we don’t have to re-run the SPF algorithm.
Summarization of type 3 summary LSAs means we are creating a summary of all the interarea routes. This is why we call it interarea route summarization. There are a couple of things to be aware of:
- A summary route will only be advertised if you have at least one subnet that falls within the summary range.
- A summary route will have the cost of the subnet with the lowest cost that falls within the summary range.
- Your ABR that creates the summary route will create a null0 interface to prevent loops.
- OSPF is a classless routing protocol so you can pick any subnet mask you like for prefixes.
If you look at my picture you can see that 126.96.36.199 /24 and 188.8.131.52 /24 both fall within the 184.108.40.206 /8 summary. If we have a link failure for the 220.127.116.11 /24 prefix we will still advertise the summary. If 18.104.22.168 /24 would fail as well then the summary will be withdrawn since there is no subnet left that falls within the 22.214.171.124 /8 range.
Enough theory let’s take a look at the configuration of inter-area summarization. This is the topology we’ll use:
I’m going to show you an example of interarea route summarization. I’m going to use routers R1 and R2. R1 will have 4 loopback interfaces which are in area 0. The link between R1 and R2 is in area 1 which turns R1 into an ABR that can do summarization.