Outsourcing the Routing Control Logic: Better Internet Routing Based on SDN Principles

Vasileios Kotronis, Xenofontas Dimitropoulos and Bernhard Ager

Claim is for an outsourced control plane for routing which is backward compatible with BGP. Idea is that any “significant sized” networks outsource routing to a contractor specialising in this. Outsourcing party exports to contractor the following:

  • Policies, either directly or derived from SLAs.

  • Topologies and measurement data (jitter, load etc)

  • eBGP sessions – connections to other networks

Centralisation gives advantages as controller can see traffic from many AS (referred to as a cluster) and hence:

  1. Optimise interdomain (benefits multiple ISPs even not part of cluster).

  2. Evolve interdomain routing – quickly adopt and try new interdomain policies.

  3. Collaborative security and troubleshooting – helps track source of failure within cluster.

Legacy API allows interaction with existing BGP and eBGP. Legacy control includes direct access to router FIB and RIB.

Economically, outsourcing reduces OPEX. Contractor can detect (and mediate?) tussle between clients.


  • Failover – what if contractor can't contact client

  • Interfaces – not designed in this paper

  • Security/privacy

  • Evolved BGP – how can routing progress once centralised

  • Market – what is structure of new market?

  • Legal – what legal problems arise?

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