Advanced Computer Networks

Instructor: Brighten Godfrey
Time: Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:30 - 4:45 pm
Location: 1302 SC
Office hours: Tuesdays 5-6 pm

Computer communication networks are among the most important and influential global infrastructures that humanity has created. This course will explore the guts of the systems that have given rise to so much innovation, how networking is continuing to evolve to support new environments, and challenges in building networked systems that are simultaneously highly robust, efficient, flexible, and secure.

The goal of this course is to provide a foundational and current view of communication networks in order to enable students to perform high-quality research in the area. Topics will include Internet architecture and core protocols for congestion control, forwarding, naming, and routing; approaches to achieve reliability, scalability, and security; and design of data center networks, wireless networks, content delivery, and peer-to-peer networks. Material will range from the classics to the latest results, and from analytical foundations to systems design and real-world deployment.

Class sessions will combine lectures, discussions of reading, and presentations of recent research papers by students. Students will carry out a research project with the goal of publication in a conference.

Course materials



DateTopicReadings and notes
Tue Aug 23 Course overview and Internet history

No reviews due.

As we may think (Vannevar Bush, Atlantic Monthly, July 1945)

A brief history of the Internet (Leiner et al)

Thu Aug 25

Networking review and
Grand Challenges in Networking

No reviews due.

Forty Data Communications Research Questions (Partridge 2011)

Tue Aug 30 IP architecture and
project ideas

Vinton Cerf and Robert Kahn. A protocol for packet network intercommunication. IEEE Transactions on Communications, Vol. 22 No. 5, May 1974.

David Clark, The Design Philosophy of the DARPA Internet Protocols. Proc. SIGCOMM 1988.

Thu Sep 1 Architectural principles J.H. Saltzer, D.P. Reed and D.D. Clark. End-to-End Arguments in System Design. ACM Trans. on Computer Systems, Vol. 2, No. 4, Nov 1984, pp. 277-288
Tue Sep 6 Congestion control

Van Jacobson. Congestion Avoidance and Control. Proc. SIGCOMM 1988, pp. 314-329. Note: You need not read the appendices of this paper.

Why flow-completion time is the right metric (Dukkipati, Tech Rep 2005; CCR 2006)

Dah-Ming Chiu and Raj Jain. Analysis of the Increase and Decrease Algorithms for Congestion Avoidance in Computer Networks. Computer Networks and ISDN Systems, Vol. 17, No. 1, June 1989, pp. 1-14.

Thu Sep 8 Congestion control in the network

Bob Briscoe. Flow Rate Fairness: Dismantling a Religion. ACM Computer Communications Review 37(2), pps. 63-74, April 2007.

Dina Katabi, Mark Handley, and Charlie Rohrs. Congestion Control for High Bandwidth-Delay Product Networks. SIGCOMM 2002.

Tue Sep 13 Router and forwarding architecture

50-Gb/s IP Router (Partridge, ToN June 1998)

Yakov Rekhter, Bruce Davie, Eric Rosen, George Swallow, Dino Farinacci, and Dave Katz. Tag Switching Architecture Overview. 1997.

RouteBricks (Dobrescu, SOSP 2009), PacketShader (Han, SIGCOMM 2010)

Project proposals due

Thu Sep 15 Routing

Matthew Caesar and Jennifer Rexford. BGP routing policies in ISP networks. IEEE Network Magazine, Nov/Dec 2005.

TeXCP (Kandula, SIGCOMM 2005), NIRA (Yang, ToN 2007)

Tue Sep 20 Scalability

Pick one of the following three: Scalable routing on flat names (Singla, CoNEXT 2010), Compact routing (Thorup and Zwick, SPAA 2001), or NIRA (Yang, ToN 2007)

Compact routing (Thorup and Zwick, SPAA 2001), SEATTLE (Kim, SIGCOMM 2008), ViAggre (Ballani, NSDI 2009)

Thu Sep 22 Reliability

End-to-End Routing Behavior in the Internet (Paxson, SIGCOMM 1996)

Achieving Convergence-Free Routing using Failure-Carrying Packets (Lakshminarayanan, SIGCOMM 2007)

End-to-End Effects (Anderson, SIGCOMM 1999), Consensus Routing (John, NSDI 2008), SafeGuard (Li, CoNEXT 2009), R-BGP (Kushman, NSDI 2007), Packet Re-cycling (Sae Lor, Hotnets 2010)

Tue Sep 27 Network games

Pick one: On selfish routing in Internet-like environments (Qiu, SIGCOMM 2003), Stable Paths Problem (Griffin, ToN 2002)

Selfish Routing (Roughgarden, JACM 2002)

Thu Sep 29 Secure routing
Hongyang Li: Secure Reactive Ad Hoc Routing

Survey of BGP security issues (Butler, Proc IEEE, 2010)

How Secure are Secure Interdomain Routing Protocols? (Goldberg, SIGCOMM 2010), Prefix Hijacking and Interception (Ballani, SIGCOMM 2007), Pretty Good BGP (Karlin, Computer Networks, 2008), Listen and Whisper (Subramanian, NSDI 2004)

Tue Oct 4 Invited Lecture: Michael Schapira
Note: 3:00 pm - 4:00 p.m., 4403 SC

Let the Market Drive Deployment: A Strategy for Transitioning to BGP Security (Gill, SIGCOMM 2011)

Thu Oct 6 Denial of service
Henry Duwe and Sam Mussmann

Pick one: To Filter or to Authorize (Liu, SIGCOMM 2008), DDoS Defense by Offense (Walfish, SIGCOMM 2006)

Network-level Behavior of Spammers (Ramachandran, SIGCOMM 2006), Not-a-Bot (Gummadi, NSDI 2009)

Tue Oct 11 Privacy and anonymity
Joshua Juen and Markus Klein

Tor (Dingledine, USENIX Security 2004), Telex (Wustrow, USENIX Security 2011; see also

Thu Oct 13 Data center networks
Mark Overholt and Shiguang Wang

VL2: A Scalable and Flexible Data Center Network (Greenberg, SIGCOMM 2009)

Helios: A Hybrid Electrical/Optical Switch Architecture for Modular Data Centers (Farrington, SIGCOMM 2010)

PortLand (Mysore, SIGCOMM 2009), BCube (Guo, SIGCOMM 2009), c-Through (Wang, SIGCOMM 2010)

Tue Oct 18 Data center services and optimization
Sobir Bazarbayev and Xiao Cai

Multipath TCP (Wischik, NSDI 2011)

Improving Datacenter Performance and Robustness with Multipath TCP (Wischik, SIGCOMM 2011), Volley: Automated Data Placement for Geo-Distributed Cloud Services (Agarwal, NSDI 2010)

Thu Oct 20 Overlay & peer-to-peer networks
Pratch Piyawongwisal and Henry Xia

Chord (Stoica, SIGCOMM 2001)

Resilient Overlay Networks (Anderson, SOSP 2001), Minimizing Churn (Godfrey, SIGCOMM 2006), Sybil-proof DHT (Lesniewski-Laas, NSDI 2010), Dynamo: Amazon's highly available key-value store (DeCandia, SOSP 2007), i3 (Stoica, SIGCOMM 2002), OpenDHT (Rhea, SIGCOMM 2005), UIA (Ford, OSDI 2006)

Tue Oct 25 Content distribution
Oliver Michel

Understanding the Impact of Video Quality on User Engagement (Dobrian, SIGCOMM 2011)

Experiences with CoralCDN: A Five-Year Operational View (Freedman, NSDI 2010), BitTorrent incentives (Levin, SIGCOMM 2008)

Thu Oct 27 Invited Lecture: Barath Raghavan
Location: 3403 SC
Tue Nov 1 Project midterm presentations Project midterm presentations due
Thu Nov 3 Project midterm presentations
Tue Nov 8 Internet measurement
Rim Kaddah and Huaiyu Zhu

Homework posted

Internet Inter-Domain Traffic (Labovitz, SIGCOMM 2010), California Fault Lines (Turner, SIGCOMM 2010), Delayed Internet Routing Convergence (Labovitz, ToN 2001), Impact of Routing Events (Wang, SIGCOMM 2006), Reverse traceroute (Katz-Bassett, NSDI 2010), Broadband Internet performance: a view from the gateway (Sundaresan, SIGCOMM 2011)

Thu Nov 10 Software defined networks
Jonathan Chu and Salman Malik

ONIX (Koponen, OSDI 2010)

Routing Control Platform (Caesar, NSDI 2005), NOX (Gude, CCR 2008), OpenFlow (McKeown, 2008) (See also OpenFlow web site)

Tue Nov 15 Future Internet architectures
Shaohan Hu

Tussle in Cyberspace: Defining Tomorrow's Internet (Clark, Transactions in Networking, 2005)

Accountable Internet Protocol (Anderson, SIGCOMM 2008), HTTP as the Narrow Waist (Popa, Hotnets 2010), Pathlets (Godfrey, SIGCOMM 2009), Data-Oriented Network Architecture (Koponen, SIGCOMM 2007), Networking Named Content (Jacobson, CoNEXT 2009)

Thu Nov 17 Wireless

They can hear your heartbeats (Gollakota, SIGCOMM 2011)

Homework due, 11:59 p.m. (solutions)

Thanksgiving Vacation
Tue Nov 29 Delay and disruption tolerant networks (DTN)
Vivek Kale and Fatemeh Saremi
Routing in a Delay Tolerant Network (Jain, SIGCOMM 2004)
Thu Dec 1 Botnets and Spam
Soudeh Ghorbani and Matt Sinclair

End-to-end analysis of the spam value chain (Levchenko, IEEE Symposium on Security & Privacy 2011)

Spamalytics: An Empirical Analysis of Spam Marketing Conversion (Kanich, CACM 2009), Show me the money (Kanich, USENIX Security 2011)

Tue Dec 6
Course wrap-up
Thu Dec 8 Final paper due
Tue Dec 13 Poster session: 1:30 - 4:30 p.m., location TBA Poster due