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Stanford University Networking Seminar


Israel Cidon (VMware)
Building Elastic WAN as a Service over Public Clouds

3:30pm, Friday, March 2 2018
Gates 415

About the Talk

Corporate Wide Area Networks (WANs) interconnect corporate facilities using expensive hardware and leased lines (MPLS). As users become mobile and applications migrate to public clouds and SaaS, corporate WANs become costly detours that slow down applications. Migrating corporate traffic to the Internet using VPNs and SD-WAN fall short due to Internet reliability and availability problems. The Elastic Public Cloud Overlay Network (EPCON) project introduces a paradigm shift in the way WANs are built and operated. EPCON leverages the fast-growing global networking infrastructures and vast geographical spread of public clouds. It offloads the network computation and communication to public clouds, and provides both WAN connectivity and security as pay-as-you-go services. EPCON introduces a software based elastic overlay network across all major public cloud operators and regions, globally interconnecting mobile users, branch offices, IoT, data centers, clouds and SaaS. Using continuous measurements across regions and SaaS, EPCON optimizes traffic routing across the global public cloud network, short-cutting the Internet. EPCON scales its computation and communication resources in real time with traffic demand, providing a limitless capacity and eliminating the need for throttling and prioritizing applications and user traffic through congestion control mechanisms. EPCON further improves end-to-end performance by applying transport optimizations along the cloud path. We implemented a global EPCON system based on IPsec, Linux's router, IPIP and GUE tunnels, and a proprietary central controller that spans over all available regions of AWS, GCP and Azure. As a software overlay network, EPCON introduces an elastic, clean slate networking and security paradigm, that is free of any backward compatibility restriction and can serve as a platform for future experimentation and research.

About the Speaker

Israel Cidon is a VP at the VMware research group since 2017. Since 1990 Israel was a professor at Technion and the dean of the EE faculty 2005-2010. Between 1985-94 he was the manager of the Network Architecture and Algorithms at IBM T. J. Watson Research Center leading several computer networks projects including the first implementations of a packet based triple play network, hardware based router and IBM's first storage area network. For these works, he received twice the IBM outstanding innovation award. In 1994-5 he founded and managed the high-speed networking group at Sun Microsystems Labs working on software define networks in the ATM space. In 1981 he co-founded Micronet, an early vendor of mobile hand held computers for data entry applications (TLV: MCRNL). In 1998 he co-founded Viola Networks, a VoIP performance diagnostic suite (acquired by Fluke Networks). In 2000, He co-founded Actona Technologies which pioneered WAN optimization and Wide Area File Systems (WAFS). Actona was acquired by Cisco in 2004 and became Cisco WAAS (Wide Area Application Services). In 2012, he co-founded Sookasa, a SaaS application security vendor (acquired by Barracuda Networks). Israel is the co-author of over 170 refereed papers and 30 US patents. His recent research involves overlay network architectures, chip networks (NoC) and distributed systems.