Isolating and Tolerating SDN Application Failures with LegoSDN

Balakrishnan Chandrasekaran, Brendan Tschaen, Theophilus Benson

Research output: Chapter in Book / Report / Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review


Despite software-defined networking's proven benefits, there remains a significant reluctance in adopting it. Among the issues that hamper SDN's adoption, two issues stand out: reliability and fault tolerance. At the heart of these issues is a set of fate-sharing relationships: the first between the SDN control applications and controllers, wherein the crash of the former induces a crash of the latter, thereby affecting the controller's availability; and, the second between the SDN-Apps and the network, wherein the failure of the former violates network safety, e.g., network-loops, or network availability, e.g., black holes.In this paper, we argue for a redesign of the controller architecture centering around a set of abstractions to eliminate these fate-sharing relationships and thus improve the controller's availability. We present a prototype implementation of a framework, called LegoSDN, that embodies our abstractions, and we demonstrate the benefits of our abstractions by evaluating LegoSDN on an emulated network with five real SDN-Apps. Our evaluations show that LegoSDN can recover failed SDN-Apps 3x faster than controller reboots while simultaneously preventing policy violations.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Symposium on SDN Research
Place of PublicationNew York, NY, USA
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
ISBN (Print)9781450342117
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameSOSR '16
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery


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