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I have a wireless router installed at my home (provided by ISP). Scenario:

Router IP: 192.168.1.1

My Machine IP (X): 192.168.1.2

IP of machine Y: 192.168.1.3

Now when I ping Y from my machine X.(ping 192.168.1.3 from 192.168.1.2)

My Routing table says: 

192.168.1.0     0.0.0.0         255.255.255.0   U     9      0        0 wlan0

This is a local route and now the ARP will be consulted for the MAC address of Y. Suppose Y has mac: yy:yy:yy:yy:yy:yy Thus a packet will be sent out from wlan0 towards the router.

Now How will the router forward the packet? Will it switched based on MAC or Layer 3 IP lookup will be used to forward in the packet?

  • It likely is also an implementation detail, given tthat this is a router. It should work only on ARP - layer 2 - but who knows what some engineer in his wisdom has implemented. – TomTom Jul 28 '13 at 18:05
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One would expect that because this involves only machines in the same network, the router will just act as a switch and look only at the MAC address. But routers in the real world don't always behave precisely the way you would expect.

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