Computer Networks Group
Web site: http://netgroup.polito.it
The Computer Networks Group (NetGroup) has extensive experience in research, development, and experimentation in the field of networking and has been participating to a large number of national and European research projects. The main areas of expertise are: internetworking, Internet architecture and protocols (both version 4 and version 6), voice over IP, quality of service over packet networks, optical networking, high performance switching, programmable software architectures for network processing, network traffic capture and analysis, peer-to-peer systems and resource location solutions.
Main academic research results
- Analysis of tolerance of synchronization errors and their impact on delay in pipeline forwarding networks
- Blocking probability analysis in time-driven priority networks
- Mechanisms for traffic localization in peer-to-peer systems
- Mechanisms for building dynamic scale-free, unstructured peer-to-peer systems
Main applied research results
The NetGroup has developed a library, called WinPcap, for low-level access to network services on Windows based systems. Available on-line at http://www.winpcap.org, WinPcap has become the de-facto standard library for network analysis tools on the Win32 platform and allows the programmer to directly access functionality of a network adapter or IP. The development of WinPcap and the WinPcap-based network analyzer WinDump, started in 1999 and continued within the NetGroup until 2005, when both software packages have been transferred to CACE Technologies, Davis (CA). CACE Technologies has been continuing the development of the projects agreeing to keep them in the open-source domain, while offering customer support to commercial products based on them.
More recently, the NetGroup has developed and made available in the public domain (http://www.nbee.org) the NetBee library intended for several types of packet processing, such as packet sniffing and filtering, packet decoding, and traffic classification.
The NetGroup has also developed Analyzer, a public domain packet sniffing and network monitoring tool available on-line at http://analyzer.polito.it, that uses the WinPcap library to access the traffic received by a network card.
- (See also http://netgroup.polito.it/research-projects).
- High Speed and Flexible Packet Processing: we are investigating how to reach high-speed packet processing (e.g. 10Gbps and beyond), while maintaining high flexibility. We designed several components that can be used to achieve this vision, from the highly successful NetPDL language, the NetVM virtual machine, and their integration in the NetBee library. Follow these pointers for more information.
- Traffic Classification: this topic started as a by-product of our packet processing activities. We are interested particularly in scalability issues in high-speed traffic classification. More details can be found in the Traffic Classification page.
- Data-oriented networking: a possible view of the future Internet is a scenario where the well-known connection-oriented model will become more data-oriented, i.e., the main paradigm driving network operation will be the retrieval of data. This topic is known as data-oriented networking. Within this context, we are studying effective network architectures and efficient solutions for data lookup and retrieval.
- Peer-to-Peer protocols and Overlay networks: our research concerning this topic is oriented to two different aspects: the study of mechanisms for a more efficient management of network resources in peer-to-peer networks and the development of a distributed solution for relaying service.
- Pipeline Forwarding: we are involved in the development of Pipeline Forwarding, a solution for providing guaranteed quality of service in future (optical) networks. In particular, we are currently analyzing possible solutions for the deployment of Pipeline Forwarding in wireless based access networks and for efficiently supporting multimedia communication over Pipeline Forwarding networks. We are also contributing to the realization of a Pipeline Forwarding wide area testbed and studing the benefits that Pipeline Forwarding offers in terms of reducing power consumption of computer network devices.
- Routing in Vehicular Ad-hoc NETworks (VANET): current research focuses a solution to announce/discover services offered by vehicles and route traffic toward vehicles offering such services. A typical example of service supported is Internet access. Although research currently focus specifically on a highway environment, the solution being produced is assessed also in more general VANET scenarios.
Research projects and contracts