Building Research and Education Networks Through Collaboration. Rick Summerhill Chief Technology Consultant, Internet2 ICTRF 2010 Khalifa University 9 May, 2010. Overview. Why Research and Education Networks? Collaboration From the Beginning Technology and the Network
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Building Research and Education Networks Through Collaboration
Chief Technology Consultant, Internet2
Khalifa University9 May, 2010
Why Research and Education Networks?
Collaboration From the Beginning
Technology and the Network
More than Just the Network
Conclusions and the Importance of Collaboration
Large data flows and other special requirements on such flows
The ability to examine and develop new network capabilities
Providing platforms to support network research
Provide a vehicle for collaborative development of network applications
Historically, research traffic has challenged the capabilities of commodity networks
Flows can be very large
They can also require significant traffic shaping
Flows in the commercial internet tend to be fairly small – they typically lag behind the research community
Research Projects like the LHC, LIGO, and DUSEL require significant data transfers across multiple R&E networks
The Large Hadron Collider
Huge data flows processed and sent to Tier 1 sites around the world, and then on to Universities (Tier 2 and 3 sites) and and other Labs, typically connected through R&E networks.
A participating university might require data flows of 10 Gbps for hours on end.
The collider and CMS
Very Large Baseline Interferometry
Combine radio telescope images over wide baselines.
Perfect example of a project that can utilize dedicated network capabilities
Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory
Supports the underground needs of major scientific fields.
Getting the data to researchers all over the world depends on interconnecting R&E networks
Just three of many such projects currently underway
Note that the success of all of these projects, depends strongly on collaboration
And all depend on interconnected networks that depend on collaboration between networks and within R&E network communities
For Further Information
http://lhc.web.cern.ch/lhc/ and http://www.uslhc.us/
Development of new network protocols and properties
Hybrid networks – integrating circuit and packet switched technologies
Performance and monitoring systems such as perfSONAR – a world-wide development project
Providing data network performance for the network research community
Czech Republic (eduID.cz)
Japan (学認 / Gakunin)
New Zealand (AAF)
Spain (CBIC, SAUWoK, SIR)
Sweden (Federation SwamID)
The Netherlands (SURFnet)
United Kingdom (UK Access Fed.)
United States (InCommon)
Providing platforms for research on networking and collaborating with network researchers on protocols new developments
Providing infrastructure for projects like the GENI (Global Environment for Network Innovations)
Perhaps most importantly knowledge transfer between participants and keeping abreast of the changing requirements of the research and education community
Before the Internet became an essential resource in our lives, networking was primarily dependent on proprietary protocols
BITNET was an example
From the early days of the Internet, however, open protocols became the norm, and building such networks depended on collaboration within the R&E community
In the US, the IP network was dependent on research groups and universities (and later corporations) forming regional networks and connecting those networks to a backbone, which was then interconnected to other networks
Indeed, the “Internet” means the interconnection of networks!
The NSF in the US was essential in this development
The same basic hierarchies continue today, although in a much more complicated network universe
Moreover, the fact that there is no central authority over the Internet means that networks must work together to provide services – that is especially true in the R&E world.
This begs the need for even greater collaboration between researchers, educators, and networks at all levels – campus, state, regional, national, and international
In the early days of networking, R&E networks typically leased circuits from telcos and controlled just the routers at the IP layer
This was true, for example, for Internet2 and its first network, called “Abilene”
The Partners in that project were the universities, regional networks then called gigapops, and the formation of Internet2 as an organization
It also included three very important commercial partners: Cisco, Nortel, and Qwest! It became clear that collaborations between the R&E network community had to extend to the commercial sector.
In today’s world, however, it is typical for R&E networks to control all layers in the protocol stack
That means from the fiber up to higher level protocols!
Who are the participants in the network?
Where are the connectors to the network?
What physical medium is available to connect those sites?
Who will manage the network?
What fiber is available, and how is it available – long term IRUs, for example?
Do you have to build your own fiber, and what partners might you do that with?
What are the properties of the fiber – types, hut spacing, etc.
Is support for multiple waves needed on the network?
What is the availability of wave equipment for the fiber footprint? Hut spacing, for example
What are the regeneration requirements? How often does drop add have to be done, for example? What about OEO versus long optical paths?
Do your connectors need dedicated circuits for special requirements?
What are the bandwidth requirements? 100Gbps?
Do sub-wave circuits need to be supported?
Is a separate layer 2 switching component needed or can it be incorporated at layer 3?
Do connectors expect dedicated vLANs, for example?
Are there special routing requirements?
Do lower layers need to be supported at the IP layer? For example, MPLS?
Management and Operations
Who will manage the network?
How will connectors interface with management operations?
The KISS principle is important to remember in all these considerations!
Interestingly enough, the R&E community in the United States went through this process within the last two months as part of a proposal for an expanded network.
The process involved a collaboration between many different entities and partners
Other Collaborations formed from Regional Networks
Internet2 and NLR
Commercial providers like Cisco, Ciena/Nortel, Juniper, Infinera, Level3, etc.
The process was a huge effort that could not have been done without collaboration!
It’s what users, and in particular, researchers can do on the network!
The organization provides the vehicle, and indeed the encouragement, to develop new applications and uses of the network.
Consider the recent IDEA awards at the Internet2 Spring Member Meeting.
Echo Damp - a software multi-channel audio mixer and echo controller designed primarily for a high performance network
REDDnet – a large distributed storage facility for data-intensive collaboration among the researchers
Worldview – a hands-on network visualization system
Shibboleth – federated single sign-on software
Network technology advancement is the means, not the end
Quality of Life
Research and education networks provide a vehicle to support essential collaborations:
For the research community
To develop new networking concepts and ideas
For the development of new applications
For education on a world-wide basis
To encourage collaborations in many different disciplines
Research and education networks require collaboration on many different levels – between educational institutions; other regional, national, and international networks; and with both corporate and governmental entities to provide advanced services to the R&E community!