LDP: Label Distribution Protocol Overview
Label Distribution Protocol (LDP) is a key protocol in the MPLS (Multi Protocol Label Switching) architecture. In the MPLS network, 2 label switching routers (LSR) must agree on the meaning of the labels used to forward traffic between and through them. LDP defines a set of procedures and messages by which one LSR (Label Switched Router) informs another of the label bindings it has made. The LSR uses this protocol to establish label switched paths through a network by mapping network layer routing information directly to data-link layer switched paths.
Two LSRs (Label Switched Routers) which use LDP to exchange label mapping information are known as LDP peers and they have an LDP session between them. In a single session, each peer is able to learn about the others label mappings, in other words, the protocol is bi-directional.