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EPIC: Platform-as-a-Service Model for Cloud Networking

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Benson, Theophilus A; Akella, Aditya; Sahu, Sambit; Shaikh, Anees
University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Computer Sciences
Mar 15, 2012
Enterprises today face several challenges when hosting line-of-business applications in the cloud. Central to many of these challenges is the limited support for control over cloud network functions, such as, the ability to ensure security, performance guarantees or isolation, and to flexibly interpose middleboxes in application deployments. In this paper, we present the design and implementation of a novel cloud networking system called EPIC. Customers can leverage EPIC to deploy applications augmented with a rich and extensible set of network functions such as virtual network isolation, custom addressing, service differentiation, and flexible interposition of various middleboxes. EPIC primitives are directly implemented within the cloud infrastructure itself using high-speed programmable network elements, making EPIC highly efficient. We evaluate an OpenFlow-based prototype of EPIC and find that it can be used to instantiate a variety of network functions in the cloud, and that its performance is robust even in the face of large numbers of provisioned services and link/device failures.
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