SD-access: practical experiences in designing and deploying software defined enterprise networks
Document typeConference report
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Rights accessOpen Access
Enterprise networks, over the years, have become more and more complex trying to keep up with new requirements that challenge traditional solutions. Just to mention one out of many possible examples, technologies such as Virtual LANs (VLANs) struggle to address the scalability and operational requirements introduced by Internet of Things (IoT) use cases. To keep up with these challenges we have identified four main requirements that are common across modern enterprise networks: (i) scalable mobility, (ii) endpoint segmentation, (iii) simplified administration, and (iv) resource optimization. To address these challenges we designed SDA (Software Defined Access), a solution for modern enterprise networks that leverages Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and other state of the art techniques. In this paper we present the design, implementation and evaluation of SDA. Specifically, SDA: (i) leverages a combination of an overlay approach with an event-driven protocol (LISP) to dynamically adapt to traffic and mobility patterns while preserving resources, and (ii) enforces policies to groups of endpoints for scalable segmentation with low operational burden. We present our experience with deploying SDA in two real-life scenarios: an enterprise campus, and a large warehouse with mobile robots. Our evaluation shows that SDA, when compared with traditional enterprise networks, can (i) reduce overall data plane forwarding state up to 70% thanks to a reactive protocol using a centralized routing server, and (ii) reduce by an order of magnitude the handover delays in scenarios of massive mobility with respect to other approaches. Finally, we discuss lessons learned while deploying and operating SDA, and possible optimizations regarding the use of an event-driven protocol and group-based segmentation.
CitationPaillissé, J. [et al.]. SD-access: practical experiences in designing and deploying software defined enterprise networks. A: International Conference on Emerging Networking Experiments and Technologies. "CoNEXT'20: Proceedings of the 16th International Conference on emerging Networking EXperiments and Technologies: December 1–4, 2020, Barcelona, Spain". New York: Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 2020, p. 496-508. ISBN 978-1-4503-7948-9. DOI 10.1145/3386367.3431288.
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