Chapter 4. AMQ Interconnect deployment guidelines

To plan your router network and design the network topology, you must first understand the different router modes and how you can use them to create different types of networks.

4.1. Router operating modes

In AMQ Interconnect, each router can operate in standalone, interior, or edge mode. In a router network, you deploy multiple interior routers or a combination of interior and edge routers to create the desired network topology.

The router operates as a single, standalone network node. A standalone router cannot be used in a router network - it does not establish connections with other routers, and only routes messages between directly-connected endpoints.
The router is part of the interior of the router network. Interior routers establish connections with each other and automatically compute the lowest cost paths across the network. You can have up to 128 interior routers in the router network.
The router maintains a single uplink connection to one or more interior routers. Edge routers do not participate in the routing protocol or route computation, but they enable you to efficiently scale the routing network. There are no limits to the number of edge routers you can deploy in a router network.

4.2. Security guidelines

In the router network, the interior routers should be secured with a strong authentication mechanism in which they identify themselves to each other. You should choose and plan this authentication mechanism before creating the router network.


If the interior routers are not properly secured, unauthorized routers (or endpoints pretending to be routers) could join the router network, compromising its integrity and availability.

You can choose a security mechanism that best fits your requirements. However, you should consider the following recommendations:

  • Create an X.509 Certificate Authority (CA) to oversee the interior portion of the router network.
  • Generate an individual certificate for each interior router.

    Each interior router can be configured to use the CA to authenticate connections from any other interior routers.


    Connections from edge routers and clients can use different levels of security, depending on your requirements.

By using these recommendations, a new interior router cannot join the network until the owner of the CA issues a new certificate for the new router. In addition, an intruder wishing to spoof an interior router cannot do so because it would not have a valid X.509 certificate issued by the network’s CA.

4.3. Router connection guidelines

Before creating a router network, you should understand how routers connect to each other, and the factors that affect the direction in which an inter-router connection should be established.

Inter-router connections are bidirectional

When a connection is established between routers, message traffic flows in both directions across that connection. Each connection has a client side (a connector) and a server side (a listener) for the purposes of connection establishment. Once the connection is established, the two sides become equal participants in a bidirectional connection. For the purposes of routing AMQP traffic across the network, the direction of connection establishment is not relevant.

Factors that affect the direction of connection establishment

When establishing inter-router connections, you must choose which router will be the "listener" and which will be the "connector". There should be only one connection between any pair of routers.

When determining the direction of inter-router connections in the network topology, consider the following factors:

IP network boundaries and firewalls
Generally, inter-router connections should always be established from more private to more public. For example, to connect a router in a private IP network to another router in a public location (such as a public cloud provider), the router in the private network must have the connector and the router in the public location must have the listener. This is because the public location cannot reach the private location by TCP/IP without the use of VPNs or other firewall features designed to allow public-to-private access.
Network topology
The topology of the router network may affect the direction in which connections should be established between the routers. For example, a star-topology that has a series of routers connected to one or two central "hub" routers should have listeners on the hub and connectors on the spokes. That way, new spoke routers may be added without changing the configuration of the hub.