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A designated router is a hardware piece playing a particular role in wireless networking. It is most frequently used as part of an Open Shortest Path First or OSPF link-state routing protocol for IP networks.
Systems like OSPF involve a designated router or DR and designated backup router or BDR. Experts describe the designated router as the chosen path for multiple routers on a multi-access network segment. Using testing processes like a neighbor discovery process and various types of IP messaging, a designated router can be chosen.
Elaborate systems for link-state routing will help to identify which types of routers can be designated or backup-designated, and which routers may not receive a designation. OSPF is a very common type of implementation for quick network convergence. It competes with other models such as IS-IS, or Intermediate System to Intermediate System, a routing protocol for a set of physically connected hardware.