Spanning Tree Protocol (STP)

The Spanning Tree Protocol (STP) is a network protocolthat ensures a loop-free topology for any bridged Ethernet local area network.


STP is a Data Link Layer protocol. It is standardized as IEEE 802.1D. As the name suggests, it creates a spanning tree within a mesh network of connected layer-2 bridges (typically Ethernet switches), and disables those links that are not part of the spanning tree, leaving a single active path between any two network nodes.

Protocol dependencies

Example traffic



The STP dissector is fully functional and supports IEEE 802.1D BPDU, Rapid Spanning-Tree BPDUs, and MST/MSTI BPDUs. Also add info of additional Wireshark features where appropriate, like special statistics of this protocol.

Cisco has a custom TLV extension called Per Vlan Spanning Tree (PVST+). The extension is added to 802.1D and RST BPDUs sent on 802.1Q VLAN trunks. The extension at the end of the BPDU advertises the VLAN ID (PVID) that the BPDU was sent on. The extension has the following format. It should be noted that only 802.1D and not RST BPDUs include the one padding byte for alignment.

Preference Settings

There are no STP specific preference settings.

Example capture file

* SampleCaptures/stp.pcap

Display Filter

A complete list of STP display filter fields can be found in the display filter reference

Show only the STP based traffic:


Capture Filter

Capture only the STP based traffic:


External links


Imported from on 2020-08-11 23:25:59 UTC