Robert Birke

Politecnico di Torino, Torino, Piedmont, Italy

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Publications (23)5.25 Total impact

  • 02/2014; 89(3).
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    ABSTRACT: In this paper we consider mesh based P2P streaming systems focusing on the problem of regulating peer transmission rate to match the system demand while not overloading each peer upload link capacity. We propose Hose Rate Control (HRC), a novel scheme to control the speed at which peers offer chunks to other peers, ultimately controlling peer uplink capacity utilization. This is of critical importance for heterogeneous scenarios like the one faced in the Internet, where peer upload capacity is unknown and varies widely.HRC nicely adapts to the actual peer available upload bandwidth and system demand, so that Quality of Experience is greatly enhanced. To support our claims we present both simulations and actual experiments involving more than 1000 peers to assess performance in real scenarios. Results show that HRC consistently outperforms the Quality of Experience achieved by non-adaptive schemes.
    Computer Communications 11/2012; 35(18):2237–2244. · 1.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: P2P-TV systems performance are driven by the overlay topology that peers form. Several proposals have been made in the past to optimize it, yet little experimental studies have corroborated results. The aim of this work is to provide a comprehensive experimental comparison of different strategies for the construction and maintenance of the overlay topology in P2P-TV systems. To this goal, we have implemented different fully-distributed strategies in a P2P-TV application, called PeerStreamer, that we use to run extensive experimental campaigns in a completely controlled set-up which involves thousands of peers, spanning very different networking scenarios. Results show that the topological properties of the overlay have a deep impact on both user quality of experience and network load. Strategies based solely on random peer selection are greatly outperformed by smart, yet simple strategies that can be implemented with negligible overhead. Even with different and complex scenarios, the neighborhood filtering strategy we devised as most performing guarantees to deliver almost all chunks to all peers with a play-out delay as low as only 6s even with system loads close to 1.0. Results are confirmed by running experiments on PlanetLab. PeerStreamer is open-source to make results reproducible and allow further research by the community.
    Peer-to-Peer Computing (P2P), 2012 IEEE 12th International Conference on; 01/2012
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    ABSTRACT: In this paper we consider mesh based P2P streaming systems focusing on the problem of regulating peer upload rate to match the system demand while not overloading each peer upload link capacity. We propose Hose Rate Control (HRC), a novel scheme to control the speed at which peers offer chunks to other peers, ultimately controlling peer uplink capacity utilization. This is of critical importance for heterogeneous scenarios like the one faced in the Internet, where peer upload capacity is unknown and varies widely. HRC nicely adapts to the actual peer available upload bandwidth and system demand, so that users' Quality of Experience is greatly enhanced. Both simulations and actual experiments involving up to 1000 peers are presented to assess performance in real scenarios. Results show that HRC consistently outperforms the Quality of Experience achieved by non-adaptive schemes.
    Peer-to-Peer Computing (P2P), 2011 IEEE International Conference on; 10/2011
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    ABSTRACT: Peer to Peer streaming (P2P-TV) applications have recently emerged as cheap and efficient solutions to provide real time streaming services over the Internet. For the sake of simplicity, typical P2P-TV systems are designed and optimized following a pure layered approach, thus ignoring the effect of design choices on the underlying transport network. This simple approach, however, may constitute a threat for the network providers, due to the congestion that P2P-TV traffic can potentially generate. In this article, we present and discuss the architecture of an innovative, network cooperative P2PTV application that is being designed and developed within the STREP Project NAPA WINE<sup>1</sup> Our application is explicitly targeted to favor cooperation between the application and the transport network layer.
    IEEE Communications Magazine 07/2011; · 3.66 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Multi-stage software router architectures permit to overcome several limitations of single-stage software routers, allowing to expand the number of available interfaces and to increase the overall throughput. However, a multi-stage software router, despite being composed by several internal elements, must externally appear as a single device. A control protocol called DIST was defined to solve this problem from the control plane point of view for a previously proposed multi-stage architecture. In this paper, we tackle the same problem from the network management point of view. We define a management architecture and a manager-agent communication model to coordinate the information residing on the single elements of the multi-stage router to present a unified view to the external network management station issuing SNMP requests. We analyze the different variable types contained in the SNMP MIB and divide them into different categories depending on how the response to a SNMP request is compiled. The handling methods used to create the proper response to SNMP request for the different types of MIB variables are described. Analytical computations shows that the proposed management architectures does not affect the multi-stage software router scalability.
    Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Communications, ICC 2011, Kyoto, Japan, 5-9 June, 2011; 01/2011
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    IEEE Communications Magazine. 01/2011; 49:154-163.
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    ABSTRACT: SUMMARY VoIP (Voice over IP)has widely been addressed as the technology that will change the Telecommunication model opening the path for convergence. Yet, this revolution is far from being complete, since, as of today the majority of telephone calls are still originated by circuit-oriented networks. In this paper, we present our experience in the real- time monitoring of VoIP calls from an commercial operational network. We discuss and present a methodology and a large dataset of measurements, collected from the FastWeb backbone, which is one of the first worldwide Telecom operators to offer VoIP and high-speed data access to the end-user. Traffic characterization focuses on several layers, concentrating on both end-user and ISP perspectives. In particular, we highlight that, among loss, delay and jitter, only the first index may affect the VoIP call quality. Overall, results show that the technology is mature enough to make the final step, allowing the integration of data and real-time services over the Internet. Copyright c 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    International Journal of Network Management 01/2010; 20:339-359. · 0.51 Impact Factor
  • 01/2010;
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    ABSTRACT: OpenFlow is an open standard that can be implemented in Ethernet switches, routers and wireless access points (AP). In the OpenFlow framework, packet forwarding (data plane) and routing decisions (control plane) run on different devices. OpenFlow switches are in charge of packet forwarding, whereas a controller set up switch forwarding table on a per-flow basis, to enable flow isolation and resource slicing. We focus on the data path and analyze the OpenFlow implementation in Linux based PCs. We compare OpenFlow switching, layer-2 Ethernet switching and layer-3 IP routing performance. Forwarding throughput and packet latency in underloaded and overloaded conditions are analyzed, with different traffic patterns. System scalability is analyzed using different forwarding table sizes, and fairness in resource distribution is measured.
    Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Communications, ICC 2010, Cape Town, South Africa, 23-27 May 2010; 01/2010
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    ABSTRACT: Open source routers (OSR), i.e. routers running on commodity personal computers (PC), represent a valid alternative to proprietary hardware routers. However, they may suffer from performance impairments and software limitations. Multistage architectures, based on the interconnection of elements running on standard PCs, improve single stage OSR performance. Virtualization technologies may permit to make a further step towards performance improvement (by aggregation of multiple elements into a single logical unit), increased flexibility (e.g. scalability, maintenance, consolidation) and easier introduction of new features (e.g. energy saving mechanisms). In this paper we study a previously proposed multistage architecture and consider its implementation when using virtual machines as internal components. In our experiments we demonstrate the feasibility of the architecture, and discuss some issues related to performance and architecture control.
    Proceedings of the Global Communications Conference, 2010. GLOBECOM 2010, 6-10 December 2010, Miami, Florida, USA; 01/2010
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    ABSTRACT: P2P-TV systems have become part of the Internet landscape. The architecture of these (normally proprietary) applications is generally receiver-driven, in that receivers actively search for suitable peers to download from, trying to maximize their performance. The Napa-Wine EU project proposes an architecture where P2P-TV clients exploit network measures to reduce their network footprint and, if available, exploit ALTO-like services to optimize topology and performance, and to minimize the overall network load. The Topology Management and Chunk Trading are implemented on top of a set of generic libraries (GRAPES Generic Resource Aware P2P Environment for Streaming) which provide all the basic functionalities needed for peer sampling, for chunk scheduling, for exchanging buffer maps and chunk ID sets, for sending and receiving chunks, etc.
    IEEE Tenth International Conference on Peer-to-Peer Computing, P2P 2010, Delft, The Netherlands, 25-27 August 2010; 01/2010
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    ABSTRACT: Software/open routers, PCs (personal computers) running open-source OSs (operating systems) and equipped with Ethernet network interface cards (NICs), are receiving increasing attention in the research community, because they can offer multi-gigabit-per-second packet forwarding speed, performance comparable to those of low-to-medium end commercial routers. However, commercially available NICs lack programmability. Furthermore, the use of standard NICs implies that each packet crosses the bus twice, and is processed and routed in software by the OS, thus reducing forwarding performance. In this paper, we discuss the design and the implementation of an FPGA-based NIC that permits overcoming the performance bottleneck and the lack of flexibility of commercial NICs. Performance and limitations of the proposed approach are thoroughly discussed.
    Computer Networks. 01/2009;
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    ABSTRACT: Recent research in the different functional areas of modern routers have made proposals that can greatly increase the efficiency of these machines. Most of these proposals can be implemented quickly and often efficiently in software. We wish to use personal computers as forwarders in a network to utilize the advances made by researchers. We therefore examine the ability of a personal computer to act as a router. We analyze the performance of a single general purpose computer and show that I/O is the primary bottleneck. We then study the performance of distributed router composed of multiple general purpose computers. We study the performance of a star topology and through experimental results we show that although its performance is good, it lacks flexibility in its design. We compare it with a multistage architecture. We conclude with a proposal for an architecture that provides us with a forwarder that is both flexible and scalable.
    High Performance Switching and Routing, 2008. HSPR 2008. International Conference on; 06/2008
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    ABSTRACT: Software routers based on personal computer (PC) architectures are receiving increasing attention in the research community. However, a router based on a single PC suffers from limited bus and central processing unit (CPU) bandwidth, high memory access latency, limited scalability in terms of number of network interface cards, and lack of resilience mechanisms. Multi-stage architectures created by interconnecting several PCs are an interesting alternative since they allow to i) increase the performance of single-software routers, ii) scale router size, iii) distribute packet-forwarding and control functionalities, iv) recover from single-component failures, and v) incrementally upgrade router performance. However, a crucial issue is to hide the internal details of the interconnected architecture so that the architecture behaves externally as a single router, especially when considering the control and the management plane. In this paper, we describe a control protocol for a previously proposed multi-stage architecture based on PC interconnection. The protocol permits information exchange among internal PCs to support: i) configuration of the interconnected architecture, ii) packet forwarding, iii) routing table distribution, iv) management of the internal devices. The protocol is operating system independent, since it interacts with software routing suites such as Quagga and Xorp, and it is under test in our labs on a small-scale prototype of the multi-stage router.
    High Performance Switching and Routing, 2008. HSPR 2008. International Conference on; 06/2008
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    M. Petracca, R. Birke, A. Bianco
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    ABSTRACT: Increasing attention has been recently devoted to software routers based on off-the-shelf hardware and open-source operating systems running on personal computer (PC) architectures. Today's high-end PCs PCI shared buses fit into the multi-gigabit-per-second routing segment, for a price much lower than that of commercial routers. However, commercially available Network Interface Cards (NICs) lack programmability, and require not only packets to cross the PCI bus twice, but also to process them in software by the operating system (OS), reducing routing performance. In this paper we discuss the design of an FPGA-based NIC that permits to overcome the limitations of commercial NICs and provide a detailed description of its implementation.
    Telecommunication Networking Workshop on QoS in Multiservice IP Networks, 2008. IT-NEWS 2008. 4th International; 03/2008
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    ABSTRACT: VoIP has widely been addressed as the technology that will change the Telecommunication model opening the path for convergence. Still today this revolution is far from being complete, since the majority of telephone calls are originated by circuit-oriented networks. In this paper for the first time to the best of our knowledge, we present a large dataset of measurements collected from the FastWeb backbone, which is one of the first worldwide Telecom operator to offer VoIP and high-speed data access to the end-user. Traffic characterization will focus on several layers, focusing on both end-user and ISP perspective. In particular, we highlight that, among loss, delay and jitter, only the first index may affect the VoIP call quality. Results show that the technology is mature to make the final step, allowing the integration of data and real-time services over the Internet.
    INFOCOM 2007. 26th IEEE International Conference on Computer Communications. IEEE; 06/2007
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    ABSTRACT: We present the latest experimental results within the WONDER project, aiming at the demonstration of an advanced packet-based WDM architecture that recently reached its full maturity. Our results show the feasibility of all-optical networking using commercially available optoelectronic components.
    01/2007;
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    ABSTRACT: The research community is devoting increasing attention to software routers based on off-the-shelf hardware and open-source operating systems running on the personal-computer (PC) architecture. Today's high-end PCs are equipped with peripheral component interconnect (PCI) shared buses enabling them to easily fit into the multi-gigabit-per-second routing segment, for a price much lower than that of commercial routers. However, commercially-available PC network interface cards (NICs) lack programmability, and require not only packets to cross the PCI bus twice, but also to be processed in software by the operating system, strongly reducing the achievable forwarding rate. It is therefore interesting to explore the performance of customizable NICs based on field-programmable gate array (FPGA) logic devices we developed and assess how well they can overcome the limitations of today's commercially-available NICs
    High Performance Switching and Routing, 2006 Workshop on; 01/2006
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    ABSTRACT: Network monitoring is becoming more and more appealing to Network Operators to keep track of the offered quality especially related to multimedia and streaming traffic. This paper presents an enhanced version of Tstat which is able to identify multimedia streaming flows. After a brief introduction on Tstat, section II shows a brief analysis of multimedia traffic to identify the streaming protocols mostly in use, while sections III and IV discuss on the heuristics implemented to identify these protocols. Section V presents the possible metrics. Finally the last sections present some real world measurements.
    01/2006;