Research areas

Extending functionality of programmable dataplanes

In modern network devices, dataplanes allows configuration for additional functionality. As a result, additional services may be implemented in a switch locally and without any interactions with a controller. It minimizes the response delay on network state changes.

Research directions in this area are as follows:

  • Monitoring of link liveness using BFD protocol.
  • Ways to accelerate performance of software switches.

SDN applications development

SDN offers a wide range of opportunities for creating applications with custom logic previously unavailable in traditional networks.

Research directions in this area are as follows:

  • Development of fault-tolerant algorithms for connecting switches to controller using InBand.
  • Development of a load balancing algorithm for OpenFlow switches.
  • Development of PCEP support for a SDN controller.
  • Development of Netconf support for a SDN controller.

Cloud computing building and management technologies

Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) is the concept of separation of network node function from hardware which implements it, using virtualization technology. NFV allows software-based deployment and management of network functions on a standart data center's hardware through the virtualization of physical resources (computing, network and storage). This ensures independence of the network service logic from the hardware on which it operates. The "Virtual Network Function" (VNF) engineering depends on the goals for which the virtualization infrastructure of network functions is built, on who builds this infrastructure and for what. Examples of NFV are services for the network traffic analysis, management and engineering. The sample of a virtual network function for telecom operators is a software that provides the functionality of appliance for a traffic switching, routing, filtering, balancing, etc. Other examples might be Voice over IP, video conference, EPC, billing, DPI (Deep Package Inspection), traffic engineering and monitoring, and the like.

Intellectual systems of network interaction in heterogeneous networks

Nowadays, the Internet of Things (IoT) only consists of weakly interconnected separated networks. For example, in modern cars, several networks operate simultaneously: one controls the operation of the engine, the other - security systems, the third maintains communication, etc. In office and residential buildings, many networks are also installed to manage heating, ventilation, air conditioning, telephone communications, security and lighting. As the IoT goes up, these and many other networks, will connect to each other and acquire more and more features in the areas of security, analytics and management.

Modeling and prototyping systems for computer networks

Simulation modelling is often used in the investigation of various properties of computer networks. The necessary detailing of the simulation model of a computer network depends on the purposes of modeling and is determined by the researcher during the preparation of the simulation experiment. The detail and accuracy of the simulation model depends on the choice of the abstraction level of the modeled object, as well as on the choice of the mathematical apparatus, in terms of which the model is built. The Laboratory is developing an approach to building simulation models based on lightweight virtualization technology that allows to scale the model of the computer network effectively and to reduce the labor costs for its calibration and identification.

Development of new programming languages for SDN

In this area the following works are in progress:

  • Development of new abstractions for SDN network applications programming.
  • Development of automatic rule generation system in SDN.
  • Development of collision resolution system for SDN network applications.
  • Working with heterogenous SDN switch hardware (partial OpenFlow handling, different packet processing pipelines, discriminatory rule tables and maximum number of rules)

Distributed Controlplane in SDN

In this area the following works are in progress:

  • Development of algorithms and tools for reliability, fault tolerance and high availability of SDN distributed control platform; development of recovery algorithms for controller failure, control channel failure and inter-controller connection loss.
  • Analysis of distributed transactions algorithms, development of controller state synchronization algorithms, voter and leader election algorithms.
  • Development of algorithms and methods of load balancing between SDN controllers in distributed controlplane.

SDN security

The following works are carried out on this issue:

  • Development of system for controlling applications access to controller resources
  • The analysis of SDN protocols security
  • Development of intrusion detection systems
  • Detection of compromised switches in SDN

Adaptive communication

The development of intelligent methods of network management is one of the most relevant areas of research in the field of computer networks. Advances in this area will give us an opportunity to improve network performance by more efficient use of available resources and optimize network operation for specific applications . Such an optimization is often of fundamental importance because it can yield a competitive advantage. For example, it may be useful in the organization of cloud computing, in live streaming with content delivery networks, in building interactive online services and games, in consolidation of sensors and actuators which form the basis of IOT.