Software transactional networking: Concurrent and consistent policy composition

Marco Canini, Petr Kuznetsov, Dan Levin, Stefan Schmid

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

40 Scopus citations

Abstract

It seems natural to imagine that SDN policy specification and control is distributed, and this paper focuses on the resulting concurrency issues. Indeed, conflicts among concurrent policy updates may result in serious inconsistencies on the data plane, even when each update is installed with perpacket consistent update semantics. This paper introduces the problem of consistent composition of concurrent policy updates. Intuitively, consistent concurrent policy composition must appear as though there is no concurrency neither between any policy updates, nor between a policy update and in-flight packets on the data plane. We propose an elegant policy composition abstraction based on a transactional interface with all-or-nothing semantics: a policy update is either committed, in which case the policy is guaranteed to compose consistently over the entire network and the update is installed in its entirety, or aborted, in which case, no packet is affected by it. Consequently, the control application logic is relieved from the cumbersome and potentially error-prone synchronization and locking tasks, and control applications are kept lightweight. In this paper, we also sketch a simple implementation of the transactional synchronization: our approach is based on fine-grained locking on network components and avoids complex state machine replication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHotSDN 2013 - Proceedings of the 2013 ACM SIGCOMM Workshop on Hot Topics in Software Defined Networking
Pages1-6
Number of pages6
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 16 2013
Event2013 2nd ACM SIGCOMM Workshop on Hot Topics in Software Defined Networking, HotSDN 2013 - Hong Kong, China
Duration: Aug 16 2013Aug 16 2013

Publication series

NameHotSDN 2013 - Proceedings of the 2013 ACM SIGCOMM Workshop on Hot Topics in Software Defined Networking

Other

Other2013 2nd ACM SIGCOMM Workshop on Hot Topics in Software Defined Networking, HotSDN 2013
CountryChina
CityHong Kong
Period08/16/1308/16/13

Keywords

  • Control plane
  • Network policy
  • Software defined network

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Software

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