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The Routing Information Protocol (RIP) is one of the oldest distance-vector routing protocols which employ the hop count as a routing metric. RIP prevents routing loops by implementing a limit on the number of hops allowed in a path from source to destination. The largest number of hops allowed for RIP is 15, which limits the size of networks that RIP can support.
RIP implements the split horizon, route poisoning and holddown mechanisms to prevent incorrect routing information from being propagated.
In RIPv1 router broadcast updates with their routing table every 30 seconds. In the early deployments, routing tables were small enough that the traffic was not significant. As networks grew in size, however, it became evident there could be a massive traffic burst every 30 seconds, even if the routers had been initialized at random times.
In most networking environments, RIP is not the preferred choice for routing as its time to converge and scalability are poor compared to EIGRP, OSPF, or IS-IS. However, it is easy to configure, because RIP does not require any parameters unlike other protocols.
RIP uses the User Datagram Protocol (UDP) as its transport protocol, and is assigned the reserved port number 520
Based on the Bellman–Ford algorithm and the Ford–Fulkerson algorithm distant-vector routing protocols started to be implemented from 1969 onwards in data networks such as the ARPANET and CYCLADES. The predecessor of RIP was the Gateway Information Protocol (GWINFO) which was developed by Xerox in the mid-1970s to route its experimental network. As part of the Xerox Network Systems (XNS) protocol suite GWINFO transformed into the XNS Routing Information Protocol. This XNS RIP in turn became the basis for early routing protocols, such as Novell’s IPX RIP, AppleTalk’s Routing Table Maintenance Protocol (RTMP), and the IP RIP. The 1982 Berkley Software Distribution of the UNIX operating system implemented RIP in the routed daemon. The 4.2BSD release proved popular and became the basis for subsequent UNIX versions, which implemented RIP in the routed or gated daemon. Ultimately RIP had been extensively deployed before the standard written by Charles Hedrick was passed as RIPv1 in 1988.