Frame Relay WAN Protocol
Frame Relay is WAN protocol and operates for LAN internetworking at data link layers
for a faster and more efficient method of conveying information from one device to the other
across multiple routers and switches, hence the term Frame Relay WAN. WAN stands for Wide Area
Network. This computer network covers wide geographical area, in contrast to local area networks
or LANs that are typically limited within a certain area like an office, campus or a room.
The Internet is the most popular example of WAN. The Wide Area Network contains multiple Local
Area Networks that are connected across distances. This interconnection is managed by an independent
carrier that provides connection between two locations.
For those who are not familiar with Frame Relay, well it is a packet-switched technology
and enables stations to share network medium and bandwidth. Two packet techniques are employed
by Frame Relay: Variable-length and Statistical multiplexing. However, data integrity is not
guaranteed and packets are discarded during network congestion. Anyhow it can still manage
to deliver reliable data. It is designed for efficient transmission of data in order to
transmit swift digital information.
It is a system of message forwarding by which data packets or frames, are delivered from
one or several starting points to counter destinations through intermediary nodes. Network
providers employ frame relay for both voice and data used between local LAN over WAN networks.
Each user gets a leased line to the frame-relay point. The network of frame-relay handles
transmission over the variable path visible to all users.
The frame in Frame Relay is transmitted through virtual circuits to its destination.
They are precise paths from the original network point to the destination point. The virtual
circuits provide communication paths in two directions; from one point to another. They are
identified distinctively by the DLCI.
Several virtual circuits are multiplexed into single circuit for transmissions across networks.
This capability tends to reduce complexity of the network required to connect to many terminal
devices. The virtual circuit passes through intermediate switches within the Frame Relay.
Frame Relay has the ability to check common errors by its mechanism called CRC or Cyclic
Redundancy Check. This mechanism compares two given values and determines whether there are
errors that occurred during data transmission from the source to the destination. This is how
Frame Relay reduces overhead in a wide area network. It implements error checking mechanism
instead of error correction. This protocol is typically executed on reliable network medium,
thus data integrity cannot be compromised because correction of errors is left to high-layer
protocols operating over the networking.
Frame Relay is designed with an objective aimed at a cost-efficient telecommunication
service, particularly in data transmission. It is designed to correct irregular traffic between
LANs, and between WAN end points. The data placed in the frames allows for error-correction
up to its end points. This enables speed up of data transmission.
In most services and providers like AT&T, they ensure the network is able to provide PVC
or permanent virtual circuit, which guarantees the customer not only sees but gets continuous
and steady connection without the need to pay for permanent leased line. The service provider
will figure out the route of each frame to its end point and charge accordingly.
Author is a staff of Digital Management Solutions
an AT&T solutions provider. He's been writing about technological advances for years. Check
our more information about Frame Relay WAN and see how it can help your business.
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