Central Control Over Distributed Routing

Stefano Vissicchio, Olivier Tilmans, Laurent Vanbever, Jennifer Rexford
Appears in: 
CCR August 2015

Centralizing routing decisions offers tremendous flexibility, but sacrifices the robustness of distributed protocols. In this paper, we present Fibbing, an architecture that achieves both flexibility and robustness through central control over distributed routing. Fibbing introduces fake nodes and links into an underlying linkstate routing protocol, so that routers compute their own forwarding tables based on the augmented topology. Fibbing is expressive, and readily supports flexible load balancing, traffic engineering, and backup routes. Based on high-level forwarding requirements, the Fibbing controller computes a compact augmented topology and injects the fake components through standard routing-protocol messages. Fibbing works with any unmodified routers speaking OSPF. Our experiments also show that it can scale to large networks with many forwarding requirements, introduces minimal overhead, and quickly reacts to network and controller failures.