RFC 8159

Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)           M. Konstantynowicz, Ed.
Request for Comments: 8159                                 G. Heron, Ed.
Category: Standards Track                                  Cisco Systems
ISSN: 2070-1721                                            R. Schatzmayr
                                                     Deutsche Telekom AG
                                                           W. Henderickx
                                                    Alcatel-Lucent, Inc.
                                                                May 2017

                           Keyed IPv6 Tunnel


   This document describes a tunnel encapsulation for Ethernet over IPv6
   with a mandatory 64-bit cookie for connecting Layer 2 (L2) Ethernet
   attachment circuits identified by IPv6 addresses.  The encapsulation
   is based on the Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol Version 3 (L2TPv3) over IP
   and does not use the L2TPv3 control plane.

Status of This Memo

   This is an Internet Standards Track document.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Further information on
   Internet Standards is available in Section 2 of RFC 7841.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2017 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

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RFC 8159                    Keyed IPv6 Tunnel                   May 2017

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   2
     1.1.  Requirements Language . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   2.  Static 1:1 Mapping without a Control Plane  . . . . . . . . .   3
   3.  64-Bit Cookie . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   4.  Encapsulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   5.  Fragmentation and Reassembly  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   6.  OAM Considerations  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   7.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   8.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   9.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     9.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     9.2.  Informative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   Acknowledgements  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
   Contributors  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
   Authors' Addresses  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  12

1.  Introduction

   L2TPv3, as defined in [RFC3931], provides a mechanism for tunneling
   Layer 2 (L2) "circuits" across a packet-oriented data network (e.g.,
   over IP), with multiple attachment circuits multiplexed over a single
   pair of IP address endpoints (i.e., a tunnel) using the L2TPv3
   Session ID as a circuit discriminator.

   Implementing L2TPv3 over IPv6 [RFC2460] provides the opportunity to
   utilize unique IPv6 addresses to identify Ethernet attachment
   circuits directly, leveraging the key property that IPv6 offers -- a
   vast number of unique IP addresses.  In this case, processing of the
   L2TPv3 Session ID may be bypassed upon receipt, as each tunnel has
   one and only one associated session.  This local optimization does
   not hinder the ability to continue supporting the multiplexing of
   circuits via the Session ID on the same router for other L2TPv3

   There are various advantages to this approach when compared to the
   "traditional" L2TPv3 approach of using a loopback address to
   terminate the tunnel and then carrying multiple sessions over the
   tunnel.  These include better ECMP load balancing (since each tunnel
   has a unique source/destination IPv6 address pair) and finer-grained
   control when advertising tunnel endpoints using a routing protocol.

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RFC 8159                    Keyed IPv6 Tunnel                   May 2017

1.1.  Requirements Language

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in RFC
   2119 [RFC2119].

2.  Static 1:1 Mapping without a Control Plane

   The L2TPv3 control plane defined in [RFC3931] is not used for this
   encapsulation.  The management plane is used to create and maintain
   matching configurations at either end of each tunnel.  Local
   configuration by the management plane creates a one-to-one mapping
   between the access-side L2 attachment circuit and the IP address used
   in the network-side IPv6 encapsulation.

   The IPv6 L2TPv3 tunnel encapsulating device uniquely identifies each
   Ethernet L2 attachment connection by a port ID or a combination of a
   port ID and VLAN ID(s) on the access side and by a local IPv6 address
   on the network side.  The local IPv6 address also identifies the
   tunnel endpoint.  The local IPv6 addresses identifying L2TPv3 tunnels
   SHOULD NOT be assigned from connected IPv6 subnets facing towards
   remote tunnel endpoints, since that approach would result in an IPv6
   Neighbor Discovery cache entry per tunnel on the next-hop router
   towards the remote tunnel endpoint.  It is RECOMMENDED that local
   IPv6 addresses identifying L2TPv3 tunnels are assigned from dedicated
   subnets used only for such tunnel endpoints.

   Certain deployment scenarios may require using a single IPv6 address
   (such as a unicast or anycast address assigned to a specific service
   instance, for example, a virtual switch) to identify a tunnel
   endpoint for multiple IPv6 L2TPv3 tunnels.  For such cases, the
   tunnel decapsulating device uses the local IPv6 address to identify
   the service instance and the remote IPv6 address to identify the
   individual tunnel within that service instance.

   As mentioned above, Session ID processing is not required, as each
   keyed IPv6 tunnel has one and only one associated session.  However,
   for compatibility with existing [RFC3931] implementations, the
   packets need to be sent with the Session ID.  Routers implementing
   L2TPv3 according to [RFC3931] can be configured with multiple L2TPv3
   tunnels, with one session per tunnel, to interoperate with routers
   implementing the keyed IPv6 tunnel as specified by this document.
   Note that as Session ID processing is not enabled for keyed IPv6
   tunnels, there can only be a single keyed IPv6 tunnel between two
   IPv6 addresses.

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3.  64-Bit Cookie

   In line with [RFC3931], the 64-bit cookie is used for an additional
   tunnel endpoint context check.  This is the largest cookie size
   permitted in [RFC3931].  All packets MUST carry the 64-bit L2TPv3
   cookie field.  The cookie MUST be 64 bits long in order to provide
   sufficient protection against spoofing and brute-force blind
   insertion attacks.  The cookie values SHOULD be randomly selected.

   In the absence of the L2TPv3 control plane, the L2TPv3 encapsulating
   router MUST be provided with a local configuration of the 64-bit
   cookie for each local and remote IPv6 endpoint.  Note that cookies
   are asymmetric, so local and remote endpoints may send different
   cookie values and, in fact, SHOULD do so.  The value of the cookie
   MUST be able to be changed at any time in a manner that does not drop
   any legitimate tunneled packets, i.e., the receiver MUST be
   configurable to accept two discrete cookies for a single tunnel
   simultaneously.  This enables the receiver to hold both the 'old' and
   'new' cookie values during a change of cookie value.  Cookie values
   SHOULD be changed periodically by the management plane.

   Note that mandating a 64-bit cookie is a change from the optional
   variable-length cookie of [RFC3931] and that this requirement
   constrains interoperability with existing [RFC3931] implementations
   to those supporting a 64-bit cookie.  The management plane MUST NOT
   configure a keyed IP tunnel unless both endpoints support the 64-bit

4.  Encapsulation

   The ingress router encapsulates the entire Ethernet frame, without
   the preamble and Frame Check Sequence (FCS) in L2TPv3 as per
   [RFC4719].  The L2-specific sublayer MAY be carried if Virtual
   Circuit Connectivity Verification (VCCV) [RFC5085] and/or frame
   sequencing is required, but it SHOULD NOT be carried otherwise.  The
   L2TPv3 packet is encapsulated directly over IPv6 (i.e., no UDP header
   is carried).

   The ingress router MAY retain the FCS as per [RFC4720].  Support for
   retaining the FCS and for receiving packets with a retained FCS is
   OPTIONAL and, if present, MUST be configurable.  In the absence of
   the L2TPv3 control plane, such configuration MUST be consistent for
   the two endpoints of any given tunnel, i.e., if one router is
   configured to retain the FCS, then the other router MUST be
   configured to receive packets with the retained FCS.  Any router
   configured to retain FCS for a tunnel MUST retain FCS for all frames

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   sent over that tunnel.  All routers implementing this specification
   MUST support the ability to send frames without retaining the FCS and
   to receive such frames.

   Any service-delimiting IEEE 802.1Q [IEEE802.1Q] or IEEE 802.1ad
   [IEEE802.1ad] VLAN IDs -- S-tag, C-tag, or the tuple (S-tag, C-tag)
   -- are treated with local significance within the Ethernet L2 port
   and MUST NOT be forwarded over the IPv6 L2TPv3 tunnel.

   Note that the same approach may be used to transport protocols other
   than Ethernet, though this is outside the scope of this

   The full encapsulation is as follows:

       0                   1                   2                   3
       0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
      |                                                               |
      +                   IPv6 Header (320 bits)                      +
      ~                                                               ~
      |                    Session ID (32 bits)                       |
      |                        Cookie (0:31)                          |
      |                        Cookie (32:63)                         |
      |          (Optional) L2-Specific Sublayer (32 bits)            |
      |                                                               |
      |                                                               |
      |                      Payload (variable)                       |
      |                                                               |
      |                                                               |

   The combined IPv6 and keyed IP tunnel header contains the following

   o  IPv6 Header.  Note that:

      *  The traffic class may be set by the ingress router to ensure
         correct Per-Hop Behavior (PHB) treatment by transit routers
         between the ingress and egress and to correct QoS disposition
         at the egress router.

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      *  The flow label, as defined in [RFC6437], may be set by the
         ingress router to indicate a flow of packets from the client,
         which may not be reordered by the network (if there is a
         requirement for finer-grained ECMP load balancing rather than
         per-circuit load balancing).

      *  The next header will be set to 0x73 to indicate that the next
         header is L2TPv3.

      *  In the "Static 1:1 Mapping" case described in Section 2, the
         IPv6 source address may correspond to a port or port/VLAN being
         transported as an L2 circuit, or it may correspond to a virtual
         interface terminating inside the router (e.g., if L2 circuits
         are being used within a multipoint VPN or if an anycast address
         is being terminated on a set of data-center virtual machines.)

      *  As with the source address, the IPv6 destination address may
         correspond to a port or port/VLAN being transported as an L2
         circuit or to a virtual interface.

   o  Session ID.  In the "Static 1:1 Mapping" case described in
      Section 2, the IPv6 address identifies an L2TPv3 session directly;
      thus, at endpoints supporting one-stage resolution (IPv6 Address
      Only), the Session ID SHOULD be ignored upon receipt.  It is
      RECOMMENDED that the remote endpoint is configured to set the
      Session ID to all ones (0xFFFFFFFF) for easy identification in
      case of troubleshooting.  For compatibility with other tunnel
      termination platforms supporting only two-stage resolution (IPv6
      Address + Session ID), this specification recommends supporting
      explicit configuration of Session ID to any value other than zero
      (including all ones).  The Session ID of zero MUST NOT be used, as
      it is reserved for use by L2TP control messages as specified in
      [RFC3931].  Note that the Session ID is unidirectional; the sent
      and received Session IDs at an endpoint may be different.

   o  Cookie.  The 64-bit cookie, configured and described as in
      Section 3.  All packets for a destined L2 circuit (or L2TPv3
      Session) MUST match one of the cookie values configured for that
      circuit.  Any packets that do not contain a valid cookie value
      MUST be discarded (see [RFC3931] for more details).

   o  L2-Specific Sublayer (Optional).  As noted above, this will be
      present if VCCV and/or frame sequencing is required.  If VCCV is
      required, then any frames with bit 0 (the "V-bit") set are VCCV
      messages.  If frame sequencing is required, then any frames with
      bit 1 (the "S-bit") set have a valid frame sequence number in bits

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   o  Payload (variable).  As noted above, the preamble and any service-
      delimiting tags MUST be stripped before encapsulation, and the FCS
      MUST be stripped unless FCS retention is configured at both
      ingress and egress routers.  Since a new FCS is added at each hop
      when the encapsulating IP packet is transmitted, the payload is
      protected against bit errors.

5.  Fragmentation and Reassembly

   Using tunnel encapsulation of Ethernet L2 datagrams in IPv6 will
   reduce the effective MTU allowed for the encapsulated traffic.

   The recommended solution to deal with this problem is for the network
   operator to increase the MTU size of all the links between the
   devices acting as IPv6 L2TPv3 tunnel endpoints to accommodate both
   the IPv6 L2TPv3 encapsulation header and the Ethernet L2 datagram
   without requiring fragmentation of the IPv6 packet.

   It is RECOMMENDED that routers implementing this specification
   implement IPv6 Path MTU (PMTU) discovery as defined in [RFC1981] to
   confirm that the path over which packets are sent has sufficient MTU
   to transport a maximum-length Ethernet frame plus encapsulation

   Routers implementing this specification MAY implement L2TPv3
   fragmentation (as defined in Section 5 of [RFC4623]).  In the absence
   of the L2TPv3 control plane, it is RECOMMENDED that fragmentation (if
   implemented) is locally configured on a per-tunnel basis.
   Fragmentation configuration MUST be consistent between the two ends
   of a tunnel.

   It is NOT RECOMMENDED for routers implementing this specification to
   enable IPv6 fragmentation (as defined in Section 4.5 of [RFC2460])
   for keyed IP tunnels.

6.  OAM Considerations

   Operations, Administration, and Maintenance (OAM) is an important
   consideration when providing circuit-oriented services such as those
   described in this document; it is all the more important in the
   absence of a dedicated tunnel control plane, as OAM becomes the only
   way to detect failures in the tunnel overlay.

   Note that in the context of keyed IP tunnels, failures in the IPv6
   underlay network can be detected using the usual methods such as
   through the routing protocol, including the use of single-hop

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   Bidirectional Forwarding Detection (BFD) [RFC5881] to rapidly detect
   link failures.  Multihop BFD MAY also be enabled between tunnel
   endpoints as per [RFC5883].

   Since keyed IP tunnels always carry an Ethernet payload and since OAM
   at the tunnel layer is unable to detect failures in the Ethernet
   service processing at the ingress or egress router or on the Ethernet
   attachment circuit between the router and the Ethernet client, it is
   RECOMMENDED that Ethernet OAM as defined in [IEEE802.1ag] and/or
   [Y.1731] be enabled for keyed IP tunnels.  As defined in those
   specifications, the following Connectivity Fault Management (CFM)
   and/or Ethernet Continuity Check (ETH-CC) configurations are to be
   used in conjunction with keyed IPv6 tunnels:

   o  Connectivity verification between the tunnel endpoints across
      the tunnel: Use an Up Maintenance End Point (MEP) located at the
      tunnel endpoint for transmitting the CFM PDUs towards, and
      receiving them from, the direction of the tunnel.

   o  Connectivity verification from the tunnel endpoint across
      the local attachment circuit: Use a Down MEP located at the tunnel
      endpoint for transmitting the CFM PDUs towards, and receiving them
      from, the direction of the local attachment circuit.

   o  Intermediate connectivity verification: Use a Maintenance
      Intermediate Point (MIP) located at the tunnel endpoint to relay
      CFM PDUs.

   In addition, Pseudowire VCCV [RFC5085] MAY be used.  Furthermore, BFD
   MAY be enabled over the VCCV channel [RFC5885].

   Note that since there is no control plane, it is RECOMMENDED that the
   management plane take action when attachment circuit failure is
   detected, for example, by dropping the remote attachment circuit.

7.  IANA Considerations

   This document does not require any IANA actions.

8.  Security Considerations

   Packet spoofing for any type of Virtual Private Network (VPN)
   tunneling protocol is of particular concern as insertion of carefully
   constructed rogue packets into the VPN transit network could result
   in a violation of VPN traffic separation, leaking data into a
   customer VPN.  This is complicated by the fact that it may be
   particularly difficult for the operator of the VPN to even be aware
   that it has become a point of transit into or between customer VPNs.

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RFC 8159                    Keyed IPv6 Tunnel                   May 2017

   Keyed IPv6 encapsulation provides traffic separation for its VPNs via
   the use of separate 128-bit IPv6 addresses to identify the endpoints.
   The mandatory use of the 64-bit L2TPv3 cookie provides an additional
   check to ensure that an arriving packet is intended for the
   identified tunnel.

   In the presence of a blind packet-spoofing attack, the 64-bit L2TPv3
   cookie provides security against inadvertent leaking of frames into a
   customer VPN, as documented in Section 8.2 of [RFC3931].

   For protection against brute-force blind insertion attacks, the 64-
   bit cookie MUST be used with all tunnels.

   Note that the cookie provides no protection against a sophisticated
   man-in-the-middle attacker who can sniff and correlate captured data
   between nodes for use in a coordinated attack.

   The L2TPv3 64-bit cookie must not be regarded as a substitute for
   security such as that provided by IPsec when operating over an open
   or untrusted network where packets may be sniffed, decoded, and
   correlated for use in a coordinated attack.

9.  References

9.1.  Normative References

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2119, March 1997,

   [RFC2460]  Deering, S. and R. Hinden, "Internet Protocol, Version 6
              (IPv6) Specification", RFC 2460, DOI 10.17487/RFC2460,
              December 1998, <http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc2460>.

   [RFC3931]  Lau, J., Ed., Townsley, M., Ed., and I. Goyret, Ed.,
              "Layer Two Tunneling Protocol - Version 3 (L2TPv3)",
              RFC 3931, DOI 10.17487/RFC3931, March 2005,

   [RFC4719]  Aggarwal, R., Ed., Townsley, M., Ed., and M. Dos Santos,
              Ed., "Transport of Ethernet Frames over Layer 2 Tunneling
              Protocol Version 3 (L2TPv3)", RFC 4719,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC4719, November 2006,

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9.2.  Informative References

              IEEE, "IEEE Standard for Local and Metropolitan Area
              Networks - Virtual Bridged Local Area Networks, Amendment
              4: Provider Bridges", IEEE 802.1ad-2005, DOI

              IEEE, "IEEE Standard for Local and metropolitan area
              networks - Virtual Bridged Local Area Networks, Amendment
              5: Connectivity Fault Management", IEEE 802.1ag-2007, DOI

              IEEE, "IEEE Standard for Local and metropolitan area
              networks - Bridges and Bridged Networks", IEEE 802.1Q-
              2014, DOI 10.1109/IEEESTD.2014.6991462.

   [RFC1981]  McCann, J., Deering, S., and J. Mogul, "Path MTU Discovery
              for IP version 6", RFC 1981, DOI 10.17487/RFC1981, August
              1996, <http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc1981>.

   [RFC4623]  Malis, A. and M. Townsley, "Pseudowire Emulation Edge-to-
              Edge (PWE3) Fragmentation and Reassembly", RFC 4623,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC4623, August 2006,

   [RFC4720]  Malis, A., Allan, D., and N. Del Regno, "Pseudowire
              Emulation Edge-to-Edge (PWE3) Frame Check Sequence
              Retention", RFC 4720, DOI 10.17487/RFC4720, November 2006,

   [RFC5085]  Nadeau, T., Ed. and C. Pignataro, Ed., "Pseudowire Virtual
              Circuit Connectivity Verification (VCCV): A Control
              Channel for Pseudowires", RFC 5085, DOI 10.17487/RFC5085,
              December 2007, <http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc5085>.

   [RFC5881]  Katz, D. and D. Ward, "Bidirectional Forwarding Detection
              (BFD) for IPv4 and IPv6 (Single Hop)", RFC 5881,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC5881, June 2010,

   [RFC5883]  Katz, D. and D. Ward, "Bidirectional Forwarding Detection
              (BFD) for Multihop Paths", RFC 5883, DOI 10.17487/RFC5883,
              June 2010, <http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc5883>.

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   [RFC5885]  Nadeau, T., Ed. and C. Pignataro, Ed., "Bidirectional
              Forwarding Detection (BFD) for the Pseudowire Virtual
              Circuit Connectivity Verification (VCCV)", RFC 5885,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC5885, June 2010,

   [RFC6437]  Amante, S., Carpenter, B., Jiang, S., and J. Rajahalme,
              "IPv6 Flow Label Specification", RFC 6437,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC6437, November 2011,

   [Y.1731]   ITU-T, "Operation, administration and maintenance (OAM)
              functions and mechanisms for Ethernet-based networks",
              Recommendation ITU-T G.8013/Y.1731, August 2015.


   The authors would like to thank Carlos Pignataro, Stewart Bryant,
   Karsten Thomann, Qi Sun, and Ian Farrer for their insightful
   suggestions and review.


   Peter Weinberger
   Cisco Systems
   Email: peweinbe@cisco.com

   Michael Lipman
   Cisco Systems
   Email: mlipman@cisco.com

   Mark Townsley
   Cisco Systems
   Email: townsley@cisco.com

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RFC 8159                    Keyed IPv6 Tunnel                   May 2017

Authors' Addresses

   Maciek Konstantynowicz (editor)
   Cisco Systems

   Email: maciek@cisco.com

   Giles Heron (editor)
   Cisco Systems

   Email: giheron@cisco.com

   Rainer Schatzmayr
   Deutsche Telekom AG

   Email: rainer.schatzmayr@telekom.de

   Wim Henderickx
   Alcatel-Lucent, Inc.

   Email: wim.henderickx@alcatel-lucent.com

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