Network and Domain Autoconfiguration: A Unified Approach for Large Dynamic Networks
McAuley, Anthony J
Date: August 01 - August 01, 2005
Configuration management is critical to correct and efficient operation of large networks. Where the users and networks are dynamic and ad hoc, manual configuration quickly becomes too complex. The combination of the sheer number of nodes with heterogeneity and dynamics makes it almost impossible for the system administrator to ensure good configuration or even correct operation. To achieve the vision of pervasive computing, nodes must automatically discover their environment and self-configure, then automatically reconfigure to adapt to changes. Protocols such as DHCP, DDNS, and mDNS provide some degree of host autoconfiguration, but network administrators must still configure information such as address pools, routing protocols, and OSPF routing areas. Only limited progress has been made in automating the configuration of routers, servers, and network topology. We propose the first unified attempt to combine both self-configuration of much of the host, router, and server information with automatic generation and maintenance of hierarchy under the same algorithmic framework. Testbed implementations show the approach is practical, while simulations reveal its scalability, rapidity, and efficiency with respect to network performance.