SDN Controller Placement At The Edge: Optimizing Delay And Overheads

Qiaofeng Qin Yale University, USA
Konstantinos Poularakis Yale University, USA
George Iosifidis Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
Leandros Tassiulas Yale University, USA


Fog architectures at the network edge are becoming a popular research trend to provide elastic resources and services to end-users, where the processing capacity resides at the network periphery as opposed to traditional data-centers. Despite their momentum, the control plane of these architectures remains complex and challenging to implement. To enhance control capability, in this work, we propose to use Software Defined Networking. SDN moves the control logic off data plane devices and onto external network entities, the controllers. We provide a proof-of-concept implementation of a multi-controller edge system and measure traffic delay and overheads. The results reveal the sensitivity of delay to the location of controllers and the magnitude of inter-controller and controller-node overheads. Guided by the above, we model the problem of determining the placement of controllers in the edge network. Using linearization and supermodular function techniques, we present approximation solutions which perform close to optimal and better than state-of-the-art methods.

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