Shared: A Survey of the Research on Future Internet Architectures

Topics: Internet, Research, Internet Protocol Pages: 43 (8259 words) Published: September 26, 2013


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Page 26


A Survey of the Research on
Future Internet Architectures
Jianli Pan, Subharthi Paul, and Raj Jain, Washington University

The current Internet, which was designed
over 40 years ago, is facing unprecedented challenges in many aspects, especially in the commercial context. The emerging demands for security, mobility, content distribution, etc. are
hard to be met by incremental changes through
ad-hoc patches. New clean-slate architecture
designs based on new design principles are
expected to address these challenges. In this
survey article, we investigate the key research
topics in the area of future Internet architecture. Many ongoing research projects from United States, the European Union, Japan,
China, and other places are introduced and discussed. We aim to draw an overall picture of the current research progress on the future
Internet architecture.


This work was supported
in part by a grant from
Intel Corporation and


The Internet has evolved from an academic network to a broad commercial platform. It has become an integral and indispensable part of
our daily life, economic operation, and society.
However, many technical and non-technical
challenges have emerged during this process,
which call for potential new Internet architectures. Technically, the current Internet was designed over 40 years ago with certain design
principles. Its continuing success has been hindered by more and more sophisticated network attacks due to the lack of security embedded in
the original architecture. Also, IP’s narrow waist
means that the core architecture is hard to modify, and new functions have to be implemented through myopic and clumsy ad hoc patches on
top of the existing architecture. Moreover, it has
become extremely difficult to support the ever
increasing demands for security, performance
reliability, social content distribution, mobility,
and so on through such incremental changes. As
a result, a clean-slate architecture design
paradigm has been suggested by the research
community to build the future Internet. From a
non-technical aspect, commercial usage requires
fine-grained security enforcement as opposed to
the current “perimeter-based” enforcement.

0163-6804/11/$25.00 © 2011 IEEE

Security needs to be an inherent feature and
integral part of the architecture. Also, there is a
significant demand to transform the Internet
from a simple “host-to-host” packet delivery
paradigm into a more diverse paradigm built
around the data, content, and users instead of
the machines. All of the above challenges have
led to the research on future Internet architectures.
Future Internet architecture is not a single
improvement on a specific topic or goal. A cleanslate solution on a specific topic may assume the other parts of the architecture to be fixed and
unchanged. Thus, assembling different cleanslate solutions targeting different aspects will not necessarily lead to a new Internet architecture.
Instead, it has to be an overall redesign of the
whole architecture, taking all the issues (security,
mobility, performance reliability, etc.) into consideration. It also needs to be evolvable and flexible to accommodate future changes. Most previous clean-slate projects were focused on
individual topics. Through a collaborative and
comprehensive approach, the lessons learned
and research results obtained from these individual efforts can be used to build a holistic Internet architecture. Another important aspect of future Internet
architecture research is the experimentation
testbeds for new architectures. The current
Internet is owned and controlled by multiple
stakeholders who may not be willing to expose
their networks to the risk of experimentation. So
the other goal of future Internet architecture...

References: Jan. 2011, pp. 2–42.
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