Planck: Millisecond-scale Monitoring and Control for Commodity Networks

Software-defined networking introduces the possibility of building self-tuning networks that constantly monitor network conditions and react rapidly to important events such as congestion. Unfortunately, state-of-the-art monitoring mechanisms for conventional networks require hundreds of milliseconds to seconds to extract global network state, like link utilization or the identity of “elephant” flows. Such latencies are adequate for responding to persistent issues, e.g., link failures or long-lasting congestion, but are inadequate for responding to transient problems, e.g., congestion induced by bursty workloads sharing a link.

Planck represents a novel network measurement architecture that employs oversubscribed port mirroring to extract network information at 280 µs–7 ms timescales on a 1 Gbps commodity switch and 275 µs–4 ms timescales on a 10 Gbps commodity switch, over 11x and 18x faster than recent approaches, respectively (and up to 291x if switch firmware allowed buffering to be disabled on some ports). To demonstrate the value of Planck’s speed and accuracy, we use it to drive a traffic engineering application that can reroute congested flows in milliseconds. On a 10 Gbps commodity switch, Planck-driven traffic engineering achieves aggregate throughput within 1–4% of optimal for most workloads we evaluated, even with flows as small as 50 MiB, an improvement of up to 53% over previous schemes.

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People Involved

Jeff Rasley

Jeff Rasley

PhD Student (2012)

Distributed Systems, Networking

Rodrigo Fonseca

Rodrigo Fonseca

Associate Professor of Computer Science

Group Director

Brent Stephens

Brent Stephens

Collaborator

Phd Student, Rice University

Colin Dixon

Colin Dixon

Collaborator

IBM Research, Austin

Eric Rozner

Eric Rozner

Collaborator

IBM Research, Austin

Wes Felter

Wes Felter

Collaborator

IBM Research, Austin

Kanak Agarwal

Kanak Agarwal

Collaborator

IBM Research, Austin

John Carter

John Carter

Collaborator

IBM Research, Austin

Publications

Presented Talks

Open Networking User Group, May 14, 2015

ACM SIGCOMM, August 20, 2014

Open Networking Summit (ONS), March 2, 2014

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