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variable length subnet mask
Last modified: Tuesday, May 16, 2006 

Variable Length Subnet Mask, abbreviated as VLSM, is a means to specify a different subnet mask for the same network number on different subnets. With VLSM, a network administrator can use a long mask on networks with few hosts and a short mask on subnets with many hosts. To use VLSM, the routing protocol must support it.

See also subnet mask.

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EnterpriseNetworkingPlanet 
EnterpriseNetworkingPlanet provides practical advice and news for running and managing an enterprise network. In-depth articles and news cover topics such as network management, network monitoring, servers, communications, Internet telephony, operating systems, and much more.

IP Routing from Cisco Systems
The Internet protocols are the most widely implemented multivendor protocol suite in use today. Support for at least part of the Internet Protocol suite is available from virtually every computer vendor.

Why Don't RIPv1 and IGRP Support VLSM? (PDF)
RIPv1 and IGRP are classful protocols and are incapable of carrying subnet mask information in their updates. Before RIPv1 or IGRP sends out an update, it performs a check against the subnet mask of the network that is about to be advertised and, in case of VLSM, the subnet gets dropped.

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related categories

Network Protocols

Networks

Routing

related terms

IGRP

Internet

IP

IS-IS

mask

network

routing

subnet

subnet mask


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