CCR Papers from 2016

Find a CCR issue:
  • Olivier Bonaventure
    As announced in the previous issue, this is the last issue of Computer Communication Review to be printed on paper. It could become a collector in a few years, so keep it in a safe place once you've read it of course. 
    Starting from the July 2016 issue, CCR will only be available online. The papers will be archived on the ACM Digital Library. They will also be posted on We are exploring other delivery methods to improve your online reading experience. We hope that having an online publication will allow us to better serve the community.
    This issue contains three technical contributions and two editorials. “On the Interplay of Link-Flooding Attacks and Traffic Engineering” discusses a specific type of denial of service attack where an attacker tries to disconnect some targets by overloading key links in their target’s neighborhood. “Attacking NTP's Authenticated Broadcast Mode” analyses the security problems that can occur when the Network Time Protocol (NTP) is used in broadcast mode. “Paxos Made Switch-y” proposes an implementation of the Paxos distributed consensus protocol in P4. The first editorial, “Global Measurements: Practice and Experience (Report on Dagstuhl Seminar #16012)” summarizes the lessons learned from a recent workshop on global Internet measurements. The second editorial, “Towards Considering Relationships between Values and Networks” looks at the interactions between human rights and the technology that we develop. It reminds us that when we decide to carry out research on a given topic, our research results may have a broader impact than simply a series of papers published in conference proceedings, journals or online libraries. Some of our work can influence, in one direction or another, the evolution of our society and some of our design choices may have a huge impact in the long term. I encourage you to read this editorial and then take some time to think about your ongoing work and the impact that it could have on values such as human 
    Repeatability, Replicability & Reproducibility 
    Scientific papers such as those published in CCR are expected to contain enough information to allow other researchers to obtain similar results. This is what differentiates scientific publications to blog posts or articles that appear in trade magazines.
    In practice, for experimental papers, describing all the experiments in enough details to ensure that they can be completely reproduced can be challenging given our page limits. 
    The ACM publications board has recently discussed this problem and came up with an interesting classification that applies to experimental papers. This classification provides a precise definition for three words: Repeatability, Replicability and Reproducibility that could be considered as synonyms by nonnative English speakers like me.
    The first level is Repeatability. A measurement described in an article is considered to be repeatable if the same team can obtain the same results with the same setup in multiple trials. For an experimental paper, this implies that the software used for the experiment produces the same results multiple times. This is the basic level and we expect that all CCR papers are repeatable. 
    The second level is Replicability. An article is considered to be replicable if a different team than the authors of the paper can obtain the same results as those stated in the paper by using the same software, datasets, etc. as those used for the paper. Replication of research results is obviously facilitated if the artifacts used to write the paper are available. The ACM Digital Library provides a permanent storage for all the papers published in CCR and our conferences. In addition to storing pdf versions of the articles and the associated metadata, it is now possible to associate artifacts to each published article. These artifacts contain additional material related to the article such as datasets, proofs for some theorems, multimedia sequences, software (source code or binaries), … These artifacts are important to ease the replication and the reproduction of our published research results. Some papers already include links to author's web pages for some of these artifacts. However, these links are rarely permanent and they often disappear after a few months or years. Starting with this issue of CCR, the authors of accepted papers will be encouraged to provide artifacts that will be linked to the paper in the ACM Digital Library. Two papers published in this issue already provide such artifacts. 
    The third level is Reproducibility. An article is considered to be reproducible if an independent group can implement the solution described in a paper and obtain similar results as those described in the paper without using the paper's artifacts. Reproducing an experimental paper is not a simple job since it often requires an engineering effort to implement the software used for all experiments. However, it is a very important step in the validation of new scientific results. As a community, we do not frequently encourage the reproduction of previous articles since we usually focus on original results. I believe that we could also learn a lot from articles that reproduce important results. I hope that future CCR issues will contain such papers. 
    Last year’s reviewers 
    CCR heavily depends on reviewers who agree to spend time to comment submitted papers. Their feedback is often very detailed and it clearly contributes to the quality of the papers that you read. While preparing this editorial, I checked the submission site and found that last year 150 members of our community agreed to review one or more papers for CCR: Cedric Adjih, Mohamed Ahmed, Mark Allman, Luigi Atzori, Brice Augustuin, Ihsan Ayyub Qazi, Jingwen Bai, Aruna Balasubramanian, Nicola Baldo, Sujata Banerjee, Theophilus Benson, Robert Beverly, Nevil Brownlee, Ed Bugnion, Giovanna Carofiglio, Antonio Carzaniga, Pedro Casas, Kai Chen, Chih-Chuan Cheng, David Choffnes, Antonio Cianfrani, Jon Crowcroft, Italo Cunha, Alberto Dainotti, Lara Deek, Shuo Deng, Luca Deri, Xenofontas Dimitropoulos, Ning Ding, Yongsheng Ding, Nandita Dukkipati, Alessandro Finamore, Davide Frey, Timur Friedman, Xinwen Fu, Erol Gelenbe, Aaron Gember-Jacobson, Minas Gjoka, Lukasz Golab, Andrea Goldsmith, Sergey Gorbunov, Tim Griffin, Arjun Guha, Saikat Guha, Deniz Gunduz, Chuanxiong Guo, Berk Gurakan, Gonna Gursun, Hamed Haddadi, Emir Halepovic, Sangjin Han, David Hay, Oliver Hohlfeld, Shengchun Huang, Asim Jamshed, R.C. Jin, Abdul Kabbani, Michalis Kallitsis, Naga Katta, Ethan Katz-Bassett, Eric Keller, Manjur Kolhar, Balachander Krishnamurthy, Kun Tan, Mirja Kuhlewind, Anh Le, Jungwoo Lee, Zhenhua Liu, Matthew Luckie, Sajjad Ahmad Madani, Olaf Maennel, John Maheswaran, Petri Mahonen, Saverio Mascolo, Deepak Merugu, Jelena Mirkovic, Vishal Misra, Radhika Mittal, Tal Mizrahi, Amitav Mukherjee, Dragos Niculescu, Nick Nikiforakis, Dave Oran, Chiara Orsini, Patrick P. C. Lee, Christos Papadopoulos, Dimitris Papadopoulos, Craig Partridge, Peter Peresini, Ben Pfaff, Guillaume Pierre, David Plonka, Ingmar Poese, Lucian Popa, Ihsan Qazi, Zafar Qazi, Feng Qian, Costin Raiciu, Bhaskaran Raman, Fernando Ramos, Ashwin Rao, Ravishankar Ravindran, Mark Reitblatt, James Roberts, Franziska Roesner, Dario Rossi, Michele Rossi, Mario Sanchez, Stuart Schechter, Fabian Schneider, Julius Schulz-Zander, Sayandeep Sen, Soumya Sen, Zubair Shafiq, Craig Shue, Georgos Siganos, Georgios Smaragdakis, Joel Sommers, Alex Sprintson, Stephen Strowes, Srikanth Sundaresan, Muhammad Talha Naeem Qureshi, Vamsi Talla, Boon Thau Loo, Brian Trammel, Martino Trevisan, Narseo Vallina-Rodriguez, Roland van Rijswijk-Deij, Matteo Varvello, Aravindan Vijayaraghavan, Stefano Vissicchio, Ashish Vulimiri, Mythili Vutukuru, Nick Weaver, Michael Welzl, James Westall, Erik Wilde, Walter Willinger, Craig Wills, Rolf Winter, Bernard Wong, Wenfei Wu, Matthias Wählisch, Di Xie, Teck Yoong Chai, Yan Zhang and Haitao Zhao. 
    As you can see from this list, producing CCR relies on the efforts of a large number of members of our community. Our Associate Editors selected these reviewers. They usually serve for a period of three years. Dr. Hitesh Ballani has finished his tenure. I would like to thank him for all the efforts he put in handling CCR papers and I welcome Prof. Costin Raiciu from University Politehnica of Bucharest (Romania) who joins our Editorial board.
  • Dimitrios Gkounis, Vasileios Kotronis, Christos Liaskos, Xenofontas Dimitropoulos

    Link-flooding attacks have the potential to disconnect even entire countries from the Internet. Moreover, newly proposed indirect link-flooding attacks, such as “Crossfire”, are extremely hard to expose and, subsequently, mitigate effectively. Traffic Engineering (TE) is the network’s natural way of mitigating link overload events, balancing the load and restoring connectivity. This work poses the question: Do we need a new kind of TE to expose an attack as well? The key idea is that a carefully crafted, attack-aware TE could force the attacker to follow improbable traffic patterns, revealing his target and his identity over time. We show that both existing and novel TE modules can efficiently expose the attack, and study the benefits of each approach. We implement defense prototypes using simulation mechanisms and evaluate them extensively on multiple real topologies.

    Katerina Argyraki
  • Aanchal Malhotra, Sharon Goldberg

    We identify two attacks on the Network Time Protocol (NTP)’s cryptographically-authenticated broadcast mode. First, we present a replay attack that allows an on-path attacker to indefinitely stick a broadcast client to a specific time. Second, we present a denial-of-service (DoS) attack that allows an off-path attacker to prevent a broadcast client from ever updating its system clock; to do this, the attacker sends the client a single malformed broadcast packet per query interval. Our DoS attack also applies to all other NTP modes that are ‘ephemeral’ or ‘preemptable’ (including manycast, pool, etc). We then use network measurements to give evidence that NTP’s broadcast and other ephemeral/preemptable modes are being used in the wild. We conclude by discussing why NTP’s current implementation of symmetric-key cryptographic authentication does not provide security in broadcast mode, and make some recommendations to improve the current state of affairs.

    Alberto Dainotti
  • Huynh Tu Dang, Marco Canini, Fernando Pedone, Robert Soulé

    The Paxos protocol is the foundation for building many fault-tolerant distributed systems and services. This paper posits that there are significant performance benefits to be gained by implementing Paxos logic in network devices. Until recently, the notion of a switchbased implementation of Paxos would be a daydream. However, new flexible hardware is on the horizon that will provide customizable packet processing pipelines needed to implement Paxos. While this new hardware is still not readily available, several vendors and consortia have made the programming languages that target these devices public. This paper describes an implementation of Paxos in one of those languages, P4. Implementing Paxos provides a critical use case for P4, and will help drive the requirements for data plane languages in general. In the long term, we imagine that consensus could someday be offered as a network service, just as point-to-point communication is provided today.

    Matteo Varvello
  • Carsten Orwat, Roland Bless

    Many technical systems of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector enable, structure and/or constrain social interactions. Thereby, they influence or implement certain values, including human rights, and affect or raise conflicts among values. The ongoing developments toward an “Internet of everything” is likely to lead to further value conflicts. This trend illustrates that a better understanding of the relationships between social values and networks is urgently needed because it is largely unknown what values lie behind protocols, design principles, or technical and organizational options of the Internet. This paper focuses on the complex steps of realizing human rights in Internet architectures and protocols as well as in Internetbased products and services. Besides direct implementation of values in Internet protocols, there are several other options that can indirectly contribute to realizing human rights via political processes and market choices. Eventually, a better understanding of what values can be realized by networks in general, what technical measures may affect certain values, and where complementary institutional developments are needed may lead toward a methodology for considering technical and institutional systems together.

  • Vaibhav Bajpai, Arthur W. Berger, Philip Eardley, Jörg Ott, Jürgen Schönwälder

    This article summarises a 2.5 day long Dagstuhl seminar on Global Measurements: Practice and Experience held in January 2016. This seminar was a followup of the seminar on Global Measurement Frameworks held in 2013, which focused on the development of global Internet measurement platforms and associated metrics. The second seminar aimed at discussing the practical experience gained with building these global Internet measurement platforms. It brought together people who are actively involved in the design and maintenance of global Internet measurement platforms and who do research on the data delivered by such platforms. Researchers in this seminar have used data derived from global Internet measurement platforms in order to manage networks or services or as input for regulatory decisions. The entire set of presentations delivered during the seminar is made publicly available at [1].

  • Aditya Akella

    Dear students: This edition of the Student Mentoring Column focuses on various testbeds (for wired networking researching) and datasets. The questions below don't provide comprehensive coverage of either topic; as such, we may revisit them in future editions. I also hope to talk about wireless testbeds and datasets in a future column.
    I got plenty of help in preparing this edition. In particlar, many thanks to Aaron Gember-Jacobson (UW-Madison), Brighten Godfrey (UIUC), Ethan Katz-Bassett (USC), and Vyas Sekar (CMU).

  • Dina Papagiannaki

    Welcome to the January issue of CCR. This issue marks the beginning of a new year - 2016 - but also the end of my tenure as editor of Computer Communications Review. The new CCR editor will be Prof. Olivier Bonaventure, from University of Louvain, in Belgium.

    The past three years have been a true learning experience for me. Not only because they allowed me to experience the energy behind a newsletter like CCR, but also because I was given the opportunity to interact with a much broader part of our community. I got to read articles that I would probably not have read otherwise, and get excited by the increasing number of opportunities that computing and computer networks put at our disposal every day. Networks are the cornerstone of day to day discovery, and are an indispensable component of our societies. I am glad that our community continues to innovate and broadening its reach to encompass wired, and wireless networks, social networks, virtual infrastructures, data centers, while thinking about specific use cases of the underlying capabilities.

    These past three years have also given me a completely new perspective on what it takes to run a professional society based on volunteers. I have attended the SIGCOMM executive committee meetings and realized the tremendous amount of work that happens behind the scenes and that underlies the success of each one of our conferences. The executive committee meetings happen monthly and I have never seen an agenda with less than 5-10 items. All the committee members continuously think how to improve the benefits to our community's members and make our conferences exciting, informative, and fun venues where not only collaborations but also friendships form for life.

    The committee has been further working on a number of projects to encourage participation from under-represented areas, create and archive educational material, encourage good research practices, etc. I would greatly encourage all PhD students to go through the executive committee meeting notes that are publicly available online. Through my participation to those meetings I have come to respect and admire (even more than before) the members of the executive committee for their dedication and unconditional service. I will miss our monthly interactions Keshav, Renata, Jorg, Hamed, Yashar, Olivier, Bruce, and Bruce.

    I am very proud to have had the opportunity to be part of that team and to have affected some of the changes in our conferences' practices. I am particularly excited that our award committees are now publicly released, offering increased transparency around our most cherished processes that acknowledge outstanding scientific contributions. I am also quite excited about a recent change by which our SIG conferences will make public the list of the papers nominated for best papers awards, beyond the winning one. Networking research is highly selective and I feel that our community could certainly use a little more recognition in their day to day.

    As I have said in previous issues, CCR would not be possible without the work of a very large number of volunteers. It starts with the editorial board but it does not end there. Tens of reviewers are involved in the review process of CCR every quarter. Without the work of all these volunteers CCR would not be the same. I wanted to thank with all my heart all the associate editors I have had the pleasure to work with during the past 3 years. Special thanks to Prof. Augustin Chaintreau that is ending his tenure at CCR with this issue. I am also very pleased with the introduction of the ILB column and the student mentoring column, which I believe have given freshness to CCR. My deepest thanks to the Industrial Liaison Board and Prof. Akella, from University of Wisconsin.

    Maybe one of the most surprising elements of my tenure is how much I enjoyed reading the editorial submissions. I have to commend all the authors of editorial submissions. The workshop reports take so much work but made me feel I was attending venues thousands of miles away. Position papers made me think "why not" and "what if". Taking time out of busy schedules to put one's thoughts in paper is a task that is not to be underestimated. My deepest gratitude to all the authors of editorial submissions.

    Finally, thanks to all the authors of technical submissions that continuously advance the state of the art in computer networking. I have seen papers mature through the revise-and-resubmission process, and submissions addressing important problems through clear, practical solutions. Some of these works have been presented at ACM Sigcomm, always attracting attention and follow up work.

    With that, I invite you to read the current issue. It features four editorials, two of which present the reports for the 7th Workshop on Active Internet Measurements (AIMS-7), and the 2nd Named Data Networking Community meeting (NDNcomm). The third editorial is looking at an alternative information centric architecture for the Internet, while the last one presents a really nice exposition of how people think about network neutrality in different countries, and possible ways that one could use to get their head around the topic. I really liked seeing the many different views on network neutrality as instantiated across different countries. Our technical papers cover open networking and SDN, middleboxes, IXPs and ways to create an IP geolocation database.

    I hope you enjoy this first issue of CCR for 2016. Olivier, the best of luck in this new challenge and I am looking forward to a new era in CCR's history!

  • A. Panda, M. McCauley, A. Tootoonchian, J. Sherry, T. Koponen, S. Ratnasamy, S. Shenker

    With the increasing prevalence of middleboxes, networks today are capable of doing far more than merely delivering packets. In fact, to realize their full potential for both supporting innovation and generating revenue, we should think of carrier networks as servicedelivery platforms. This requires providing open interfaces that allow third-parties to leverage carrier-network infrastructures in building global-scale services. In this position paper, we take the first steps towards making this vision concrete by identifying a few such interfaces that are both simple-to-support and safe-to-deploy (for the carrier) while being flexibly useful (for third-parties).

    David Choffnes
  • Y. Lee, H. Park, Y. Lee

    In this paper, we propose an IP geolocation DB creation method based on a crowd-sourcing Internet broadband performance measurement tagged with locations and present an IP geolocation DB based on 7 years of Internet broadband performance data in Korea. Compared with other commercial IP geolocation DBs, our crowd-sourcing IP geolocation DB shows increased accuracy with fine-grained granularity. We confirm that the low accuracy of commercial IP geolocation DBs mainly results from selecting a single representative location for a large IP block from the Whois registry DB, parsing city names in a naive way, and resolving the wrong geolocation coordinates. We also found that the geographic location of IP blocks has continuously changed but has been stable. Although our IP geolocation DB is limited to Korea, the 32 million broadband performance test records over 7 years provide wide coverage as well as finegrained accuracy.

    Fabian Bustamante
  • R. Kloti, B. Ager, V. Kotronis, G. Nomikos, X. Dimitropoulos

    Internet eXchange Points (IXPs) are core components of the Internet infrastructure where Internet Service Providers (ISPs) meet and exchange traffic. During the last few years, the number and size of IXPs have increased rapidly, driving the flattening and shortening of Internet paths. However, understanding the present status of the IXP ecosystem and its potential role in shaping the future Internet requires rigorous data about IXPs, their presence, status, participants, etc. In this work, we do the first cross-comparison of three well-known publicly available IXP databases, namely of PeeringDB, Euro-IX, and PCH. A key challenge we address is linking IXP identifiers across databases maintained by different organizations. We find different AS-centric versus IXP-centric views provided by the databases as a result of their data collection approaches. In addition, we highlight differences and similarities w.r.t. IXP participants, geographical coverage, and co-location facilities. As a side-product of our linkage heuristics, we make publicly available the union of the three databases, which includes 40.2 % more IXPs and 66.3 % more IXP participants than the commonly-used PeeringDB. We also publish our analysis code to foster reproducibility of our experiments and shed preliminary insights into the accuracy of the union dataset.

    Fabián E. Bustamante
  • T. Lukovszki, M. Rost, S. Schmid

    The virtualization and softwarization of modern computer networks offers new opportunities for the simplified management and flexible placement of middleboxes as e.g. firewalls and proxies. This paper initiates the study of algorithmically exploiting the flexibilities present in virtualized and software-defined networks. Particularly, we are interested in the initial as well as the incremental deployment of middleboxes. We present a deterministic O(log(min{n, κ})) approximation algorithm for n-node computer networks, where κ is the middlebox capacity. The algorithm is based on optimizing over a submodular function which can be computed efficiently using a fast augmenting path approach. The derived approximation bound is optimal: the underlying problem is computationally hard to approximate within sublogarithmic factors, unless P = NP holds. We additionally present an exact algorithm based on integer programming, and complement our formal analysis with simulations. In particular, we consider the number of used middleboxes and highlight the benefits of the approximation algorithm in incremental deployments. Our approach also finds interesting applications, e.g., in the context of incremental deployment of software-defined networks.

    Fabián E. Bustamante
  • L. Schiff, S. Schmid, P. Kuznetsov

    Control planes of forthcoming Software-Defined Networks (SDNs) will be distributed : to ensure availability and faulttolerance, to improve load-balancing, and to reduce overheads, modules of the control plane should be physically distributed. However, in order to guarantee consistency of network operation, actions performed on the data plane by different controllers may need to be synchronized, which is a nontrivial task. In this paper, we propose a synchronization framework for control planes based on atomic transactions, implemented in-band, on the data-plane switches. We argue that this in-band approach is attractive as it keeps the failure scope local and does not require additional out-of-band coordination mechanisms. It allows us to realize fundamental consensus primitives in the presence of controller failures, and we discuss their applications for consistent policy composition and fault-tolerant control-planes. Interestingly, by using part of the data plane configuration space as a shared memory and leveraging the match-action paradigm, we can implement our synchronization framework in today’s standard OpenFlow protocol, and we report on our proof-ofconcept implementation.

    Katerina Argyraki
  • D. Trossen, A. Sathiaseelan, J. Ott

    Enabling universal Internet access has been recognized as a key issue to enabling sustained economic prosperity, evidenced by the myriad of initiatives in this space. However, the existing Internet architecture is seriously challenged to ensure universal service provisioning at economically sustainable price points, largely due to the costs associated with providing services in a perceived always-on manner. This paper puts forth our vision to provide global access to the Internet through a universal communication architecture that combines two emerging paradigms, namely that of Information Centric Networking (ICN) and Delay Tolerant Networking (DTN). The decoupling in space and time, achieved through these underlying paradigms, is key to aggressively widen the connectivity options and provide flexible service models beyond what is currently pursued in the game around universal service provisioning. In this paper, we provide an outlook on the main concepts underlying our universal architecture and the opportunities arising from it. We also offer some insight into ongoing work to realize our vision in a concrete test bed and trial setting.

  • kc claffy

    On 31 March - 2 April 2015, CAIDA hosted the seventh Workshop on Active Internet Measurements (AIMS-7) as part of our series of Internet Statistics and Metrics Analysis (ISMA) workshops. As with previous AIMS workshops, the goals were to further our understanding of the potential and limitations of active measurement research and infrastructure in the wide-area Internet, and to promote cooperative solutions and coordinated strategies between academics, industry, policymakers, and funding agencies. This report describes topics discussed at the workshop, including current state of Ark and related infrastructure, current and proposed experiments using these infrastructures, and participants’ views of challenges and priorities. Materials related to the workshop are at

  • claffy, polterock, afanasyev, zhang, burke

    This report is a brief summary of the second NDN Community Meeting held at UCLA in Los Angeles, California on September 28–29, 2015. The meeting provided a platform for the attendees from 49 institutions across 13 countries to exchange their recent NDN research and development results, to debate existing and proposed functionality in NDN forwarding, routing, and security, and to provide feedback to the NDN architecture design evolution.

  • Hassan Habibi Gharakheiliy, Arun Vishwanath, Vijay Sivaramany

    "Net neutrality" and Internet "fast-lanes" have been the subject of raging debates for several years now, with various viewpoints put forth by stakeholders (Internet Service Providers, Content Service Providers, and consumers) seeking to influence how the Internet is regulated. In this paper we summarize the perspectives on this debate from multiple angles, and propose a fresh direction to address the current stalemate. Our first contribution is to highlight the contentions in the net neutrality debate from the viewpoints of technology (what mechanisms do or do not violate net neutrality?), economics (how does net neutrality help or hurt investment and growth?), and society (do fast-lanes disempower consumers?). Our second contribution is to survey the state-of-play of net neutrality in various regions of the world, highlighting the influence of factors such as consumer choice and public investment on the regulatory approach taken by governments. Our final contribution is to propose a new model that engages consumers in fast-lane negotiations, allowing them to customize fast-lane usage on their broadband link. We believe that our approach can provide a compromise solution that can break the current stalemate and be acceptable to all parties.

  • Aditya Akella

    Dear students: This edition of the Student Mentoring Column focuses on program committees (their composition and how they work) and the importance of social networking at conferences. The questions below don’t provide comprehensive coverage of either topic; as such, we may revisit them in future editions. I got plenty of help in preparing this edition. In particular, many thanks to Kyle Jamieson (Princeton), Ethan Katz-Bassett (USC), George Porter (UCSD), Vyas Sekar (CMU), and Minlan Yu (USC) for contributing answers.

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