Designing a Predictable Backbone Network

Rui Zhang-Shen

As broadband access becomes more prevalent, and the Internet used for more bandwidth demanding applications, traffic on the backbone network becomes increasingly unpredictable, at the same time as performance requirements become more stringent. Unfortunately, the current backbone architecture cannot provide the desired flexibility and predictability in performance.

We propose that Valiant Load Balancing (VLB) be used in backbone network design, to provide guaranteed service to all traffic matrices which satisfy some aggregate constraints. The network has the additional advantage of having simple routing, recovering quickly from component failures, and utilizing capacity efficiently. Further, Valiant Load Balancing provides a framework for designing a network under a wide variety of realistic constraints.