System Administration Guide: IP Services

Multicast Datagram Routing

To begin receiving multicast traffic when a mobile node is visiting a foreign subnet, a mobile node can join a multicast group in any of the following ways:

Multicast routing depends on the IP source address. A mobile node that is sending a multicast datagram must send the datagram from a valid source address on that link. So a mobile node that is sending multicast datagrams directly on the visited network must use a colocated care-of address as the IP source address. Also, the mobile node must have joined the multicast group that is associated with the address. Similarly, a mobile node that joined a multicast group while on its home subnet before roaming, or joined the multicast group while roaming through a reverse tunnel to its home agent, must use its home address as the IP source address of the multicast datagram. Thus, the mobile node must have these datagrams reverse-tunneled to its home subnet as well, either through itself by using its colocated care-of address, or through a foreign agent reverse tunnel.

While it seems more efficient for a mobile node to always join from the subnet that the mobile node is visiting, it is still a mobile node. Consequently, the mobile node would have to repeat the join every time the mobile node switches subnets. The more efficient way is for the mobile node to join through its home agent, and not have to carry this overhead. Also, multicast sessions might be present that are only available from the home subnet. Other considerations might also force the mobile node to participate in a specific way.