Thesis Defense : Towards a scalable and programmable incremental deployment of ICN in the real world

Speaker : Mauro Sardana
IRT-SystemX&Telecom Paris
Date: 17/12/2019
Time: 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Location: Paris-Rennes Room (EIT Digital)


Information-Centric Networking (ICN) embraces a family of network architectures re-thinking Internet communication principles around named-data. After several years of research and the emergence of a few popular proposals, the idea to replace TCP/IP with data-centric networking remains a subject of debate. ICN advantages have been advocated in the context of 5G networks for the support of highly mobile, multi-access/source and latency minimal patterns of communications. However, large-scale testing and insertion in operational networks are yet to happen, likely due to the lack of a clear incremental deployment strategy. The aim of this thesis is to propose and evaluate effective solutions for deploying ICN.

Firstly, we propose Hybrid-ICN (hICN), an ICN integration inside IP (rather that over/under/ in place of) that has the ambition to trade-off no ICN architectural principles. By reusing existing packet formats, hICN brings innovation inside the IP stack, requiring minimal software upgrades and guaranteeing transparent interconnection with existing IP networks.

Secondly, the thesis focuses on the problem of deploying ICN at the network endpoints, namely at the end host, by designing a transport framework and a socket API that can be used in several ICN architectures such as NDN, CCN and hICN. The framework fosters cutting-edge technologies aiming at providing performance and efficiency to applications. An extensive benchmarking at the end of the chapter will present the performance of the transport framework.

Subsequently, the benefits that hICN network and transport services can bring to applications will be assessed, by considering two main use cases: HTTP and WebRTC. The former represents the de-facto protocol of the Web, while the latter is a new emerging technology increasingly adopted for real time services.

At last, the thesis proposes a solution for programmatically deploying, configuring and managing ICN networks and applications:  Virtualized ICN (vICN), a programmable unified framework for network configuration and management that uses recent progresses in resource isolation and virtualization techniques. It offers a single, flexible and scalable platform to serve different purposes, in particular the real deployments of ICN in existing IP networks.