Definitions

Administrative distance

Administrative distance

Administrative distance is the measure used by Cisco routers to select the best path when there are two or more different routes to the same destination from two different routing protocols. Administrative distance defines the reliability of a routing protocol. Each routing protocol is prioritized in order of most to least reliable (believable) using an administrative distance value. A lower numerical value is preferred, e.g. an OSPF route with an administrative distance of 110 will be chosen over a RIP route with an administrative distance of 120.

The following tables gives the default administrative distances used by Cisco routers.

Protocol Administrative distance
Directly connected route / static route using exit interface 0
Static route with next-hop IP address 1
EIGRP summary route 5
External BGP 20
Internal EIGRP 90
IGRP 100
OSPF 110
IS-IS 115
RIP 120
EGP 140
ODR 160
External EIGRP 170
Internal BGP 200
Unknown 255
Notes:

  • An administrative distance of 255 will cause the router to disbelieve the route entirely, and not use it.

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