Processing protocol specific information in packets specified by a protocol description language

CAFC
  • US 6,665,725 B1
  • Filed: 06/30/2000
  • Issued: 12/16/2003
  • Est. Priority Date: 06/30/2000
  • Status: Active Grant
First Claim
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1. A method of performing protocol specific operations on a packet passing through a connection point on a computer network, the method comprising:

  • (a) receiving the packet;

    (b) receiving a set of protocol descriptions for a plurality of protocols that conform to a layered model, a protocol description for a particular protocol at a particular layer level including;

    (i) if there is at least one child protocol of the protocol at the particular layer level, the-one or more child protocols of the particular protocol at the particular layer level, the packet including for any particular child protocol of the particular protocol at the particular layer level information at one or more locations in the packet related to the particular child protocol, (ii) the one or more locations in the packet where information is stored related to any child protocol of the particular protocol, and (iii) if there is at least one protocol specific operation to be performed on the packet for the particular protocol at the particular layer level, the one or more protocol specific operations to be performed on the packet for the particular protocol at the particular layer level; and

    (c) performing the protocol specific operations on the packet specified by the set of protocol descriptions based on the base protocol of the packet and the children of the protocols used in the packet, the method further comprising;

    storing a database in a memory, the database generated from the set of protocol descriptions and including a data structure containing information on the possible protocols and organized for locating the child protocol related information for any protocol, the data structure contents indexed by a set of one or more indices, the database entry indexed by a particular set of index values including an indication of validity, wherein the child protocol related information includes a child recognition pattern,wherein step (c) of performing the protocol specific operations includes, at any particular protocol layer level starting from the base level, searching the packet at the particular protocol for the child field, the searching including indexing the data structure until a valid entry is found, andwhereby the data structure is configured for rapid searches using the index set.

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