Date: Wed Jul 16 21:58:09 2014

Title: Packet Classification for Global Network View of Software-Defined Networking

Authors: Takeru Inoue, Toru Mano, Kimihiro Mizutani, Shin-ichi Minato, and Osamu Akashi


  • First name: Shin-ichi
  • Last name: Minato
  • Address: Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, Hokkaido University, North 14 West 9, Sapporo, 060- 0814, Japan
  • Email:

Abstract. In software-defined networking, applications are allowed to access a global view of the network so as to provide sophisticated functionalities, such as quality oriented service delivery, automatic fault localization, and network verification. All of these functionalities commonly rely on a well-studied technology, packet classification. Unlike the conventional classification problem to search for the action taken at a single switch, the global network view requires to identify the network-wide behavior of the packet, which is defined as a combination of switch actions. Conventional classification methods, however, fail to well support network-wide behaviors, since the search space is complicatedly partitioned due to the combinations. This paper proposes a novel packet classification method that efficiently supports network-wide packet behaviors. Our method utilizes a compressed data structure named the multi-valued decision diagram, allowing it to manipulate the complex search space with several algorithms. Through detailed analysis, we optimize the classification performance as well as the construction of decision diagrams. Experiments with real network datasets show that our method identifies the packet behavior at 20.1 Mpps on a single CPU core with only 8.4 MB memory; by contrast, conventional methods failed to work even with 16 GB memory. We believe that our method is essential for realizing advanced applications that can fully leverage the potential of software-defined networking.

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