I am not talking about the router used at home to access Internet .

I am talking about devices used in the network core.

I want to know if there are alternative devices, if any, used for forwarding and routing in any network .

  • Routers are what route packets between networks. There are devices that may be called something else that route packets between networks (e.g. a layer-3 switch), but, internally, there is also a router in the device. – Ron Maupin May 14 at 13:54

If you need to forward between different L2 segments/L3 subnets then any device actually doing that is a router by definition.

So, there's no alternative to a router (which may be a classic router, software on a host, a layer-3 switch, SDN hardware, ...).

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Routers may take many forms, such as a traditional hardware box that takes packets in, and forwards/routes them, but also, a general-purpose PC that takes packets in, and forwards/routes them. A "layer-3 switch" also does routing.

As long as it is doing routing and forwarding, it can be said to be a router (based on the definition of the functionality), even though it may also be a general-purpose PC (for example).

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Technically, Router can be replaced with a router only. Practically, any devices which has routing capabilities can be used replacing a router.

In your case, you can use a Firewall which will enable you for routing as well as other features like security policies, DHCP Services etc.

Hope, This is helpful !!!!!!!

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