Project OverviewRealizing rather ossification and relatively slow adaptation and evolvement of the current Internet infrastructure, overlay networks have been proposed and emerged as a widely accepted solution to service-oriented and value-added networking. While proven highly effective and flexible to realize the more complex and service-specific functions, current overlay networks need to re-implement the network-level functions in application level. Due to the tight coupling of application and networking functions and awareness of network dynamics at application level, current overlay networks suffer from complex implementation and poor functional isolation.
We propose a novel alternative to application-level overlays called VIOLIN, or Virtual Internetworking on OverLay INfrastructure. Inspired by recent advances in virtual machines, VIOLINs are virtual and isolated networks created on top of an overlay infrastructure such as PlanetLab. Entities in a VIOLIN include virtual routers, switches, and end-hosts, all implemented in software and hosted by physical overlay hosts.
The salient features of VIOLIN include:
- Each VIOLIN is a `virtual world' with its own IP address space. And its activities and communications are strictly confined within the VIOLIN.
- All VIOLIN entities can be created, deleted, or migrated on-demand.
- It provides a new playground to deploy, leverage, and evaluate value-added network services which are not widely deployed in the real Internet. An application can simply connect to a VIOLIN and leverage the network services provided.
- It releases application developers from network service implementation details, resulting in easier application implementation and maintenance.