Scalable and Efficient Forwarding Table Design for Multi-Link Failover in OpenFlow-Enabled Networks

Pankaj Thorat, Seil Jeon, Syed M. Raza, Rajesh Challa, and Hyunseung Choo

IETE Technical Review , December 02, 2017


One of the key technical challenges in 5G is to ensure a high level of end-to-end service availability and reliability. Software-defined networking leveraging on a centralized network-forwarding control and management paradigm is expected to fulfil such requirements and even enhance their capabilities, compared to the traditional reliability mechanisms in the legacy network. This paper presents an enhanced forwarding table design for scalable and efficient failover support on multi-link failures in OpenFlow networks. The proposed forwarding table is designed with flow grouping and flow aggregation methods to achieve faster link failover and compress the flow rules for alternate paths against multi-link failures. To validate the proposed forwarding table design, we evaluate the performance in the following points: (1) how much resilience can be provided, (2) how many forwarding rules can be reduced to configure the alternate paths against multi-link failures and (3) how rapidly the failover can be achieved. Emulation results confirm that the proposed design reduces the number of disrupted flows and required forwarding rules to configure the alternate paths. We could also identify that it can achieve the recovery in 2–3 ms.

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