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ESnet Staff to Share Views, Expertise at International Networking Conference

January 4, 2013

Twice a year, networking staff from ESnet and Internet2 host an international meeting known as the Joint Techs Meeting, but about once every five years, they combine the meeting with the Asia Pacific Advanced Network's (APAN) meeting. The combined meeting, called TIP2013, will be held Jan. 13-18 in Honolulu and is hosted by the University of Hawaii.By bringing these meetings together into one location approximately every five years, TIP2013 encourages greater global dialogue, facilitates technical collaboration across the Pacific and provides an important discussion forum for issues of concern to research and education network stakeholders in the Pacific region. 

Berkeley Lab staff, including many from ESnet, will present on topics of critical interest to the science networking community, including ESnet’s100 gigabit-per-second network upgrade and its operations; strategies for improving end-to-end network performance—including development of Science DMZs and deployment of perfSONAR tools; new programs and partnerships to support scientific user outreach; emerging trends in network research; and ESnet’s strategic planning efforts.

More than 420 networking experts from Asia, North America, South America and Europe have registered for the conference. Here’s a day-by-day list of Berkeley Lab contributions: 

Sunday, Jan. 13

Brian Tierney of ESnet will lead “Building a Science DMZ,” an updated version ofa tutorial given a year ago. Developed by ESnet engineers, the Science DMZ model addresses common network performance problems encountered at research institutions by creating an environment that is tailored to the needs of high performance science applications, including high-volume bulk data transfer, remote experiment control, and data visualization. 

ESnet’s Michael Sinatra will lead a tutorial on “DNSSEC: Signing, Validating and Troubleshooting.” This tutorial will give attendees an overall understanding of Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC), a suite of specifications for securing certain kinds of information provided by the Domain Name System (DNS). The tutorial will guide them through signing their own zones, validating other people's zones, and (depending on time allotted) troubleshooting DNS and DNSSEC-related issues.

Monday, Jan. 14

ESnet Director Greg Bell will be one of three speakers offering welcoming remarks during the opening session.

ESnet’s Strategic Partnerships and Outreach Lead Lauren Rotman will co-lead a Birds-of-a-Feather session with Jason Zurawski of Internet2 on “Scientific User Outreach: Challenges and Strategies.” This BoF, a follow-up to a similar one held last year, is intended to start a focused community discussion around best practices for creating and implementing scalable outreach and education strategies to researchers on their campuses to help them understand and effectively use the network resources available to them.

ESnet’s InderMonga will give a talk on“Network Abstractions: The first step towards a programmable WAN.” University campuses, supercomputer centers and R&E networks are challenged to architect, build and support IT infrastructure to deal effectively with the data deluge facing most science disciplines. This talk explores a new "one virtual switch" abstraction, leveraging software-defined networking and OpenFlowconcepts, that provides the science users a simple, adaptable network framework to meet their future application requirements. The talk will include the high-level design that includes use of OpenFlow and OSCARS as well as implementation details from demonstration planned for super-computing.

Tuesday, Jan. 15

Greg Bell will give a plenary presentation entitled “ESnet Update: a Ten-Year Plan in Twenty Minutes.” All facilities supported by DOE’s Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research are developing strategic plans during January, and Bell will use this talk to explore the major drivers for ESnet over the next decade, and the strategies and initiatives the facility plans to pursue in response. 

ESnet’s Eli Dart will give a talk on “Science DMZ Security.” Dart will discuss network security in the Science DMZ. Topics will include the limitations of firewalls, a comparison of firewalls and router access lists in the Science DMZ environment, and the effect on science applications for each.

ESnet’s Lauren Rotman and NERSC’s David Skinner will discuss “Science Gateways and Web APIs for HPC.” The ubiquity of the web demands a rethink of how scientific computing systems and services are organized and presented. Building web based gateways for scientific research teams is one such direction. In this talk I discuss methods of broadening access to large-scale computing, data, and network capabilities an how those methods multiply to value of these resources.

Michael Sinatra will give a talk entitled “Feeling the Brady Bunch's Pain: How two networks became a family.” When ESnet was funded to build a new 100G network, it already had its fourth-generation network in full production, using multiple 10G links. ESnet4 comprised routers from two vendors, used two interior gateway protocols (IGP) and had separate infrastructures for production IP traffic and for research traffic. The 100G network that was built used a third vendor, had only one IGP, and promised to consolidate the OSCARS reservation system, with its sophisticated MPLS backend, into a single very-high-speed network. This talk will cover the lessons learned during the daunting task of consolidating the existing ESnet4 and the new ANI networks into a single production network: ESnet5.

Brian Tierney will discuss “Network Monitoring with the perfSONAR Dashboard,” presenting a new perfSONAR tool called MaDDash (Monitoring and Debugging Dashboard) that organizes regular measurements into grids that can make the troubleshooting process much simpler. It will include a demo of an instance running on ESnet, details on how others can deploy it on their network, and experiences with the tool.

In another session, Tierney will host a panel discussion on “Experiences on ESnet's 100G testbed.” ESnet has a 100G nationwide network testbed that is open to anyone, including labs, universities and industry. So far, over 20 projects have used this testbed and a number of publications have resulted from testbed-based experiments. This panel will start with an overview of recent testbed enhancements and include 2-3 short talks by testbed researchers on their results.

Eli Dart and Kevin Thompson of the National Science Foundation are co-leading a BoF on “Science DMZ deployment issues.” This BoF is for anyone planning to deploy a Science DMZ, including those recently funded by NSF's CC-NIE program. Topics to be discussed include network architecture, security issues, DTN design, and layer-2 circuit options.

Wednesday, Jan. 16

Kejia Hu of the Computational Research Division will give a talk on “Statistical prediction models for network traffic performance,” presenting a statistical prediction model for network traffic performance by analyzing network traffic patterns and variation with the network conditions, based on two types of historical network measurement data. 

ESnet’s Joe Metzger will present “Lessons Learned Deploying a 100G Nationwide Network,” a high-level overview of ESnet5 and discuss some of the challenges experienced building a nation wide 100G network at the fiber, optical transport system and routing layers.

Inder Monga will discuss “Going Green: Network energy-efficiency research” in which he will talk about “How do we get Green out of the talking shop into reality?”Greentouch is a consortium of 60+ organizations worldwide looking at collaborative research to reduce network energy footprint by 1000x. This session will describe the rationale behind such a claim and give a preview of the research being done towards these goals.

Complementing Monga’s talk will by a moreoperational talk on monitoring of network power measurements by ESnet’s Jon Dugan,who will describe “Network Power Measurement Experiences at ESnet.” While there has been a lot of work on measuring the power utilization of compute resources there has been relatively little work done on the networking side. ESnet is developing a conceptual model for how to quantify the power use of networks. To that end, ESnet has been collecting power data for the Advanced Networking Initiative network since November 2011 and for ESnet 5 since October 2012. This talk will present the conceptual model and will also cover the details of what data is collected, how it is collected and show how this data is visualized.

January 17-18

The ESnet Site Coordinating Committee (ESCC) will holds its semi-annual meeting of its members, providing a technical forum that helps establish community practices to ensure the smooth operation of the ESnet-connected sites.  Almost all of the ESnet staff mentioned above will give presentations or lead discussions during the ESCC meeting as well – with a remote presentation from Patty Giuntoli, among others, as well.

Finally, ESnet’s On-Demand Secure Circuits and Advance Reservation System (OSCARS) will be a central theme of a Jan. 14 talk by Tananun Orawiwattanakul of Japan’s National Institute of Information and Communications Technology. The presentation on “Dynamic Circuit Network in JGN-X” will describe an ongoing dynamic circuit network (DCN) research in JGN-X (the Japanese Future Internet Testbed). The research objective is extending OSCARS version 6 developed by the Energy Sciences Network (ESnet), to effectively serve Japanese academic communities.

About Computing Sciences at Berkeley Lab

High performance computing plays a critical role in scientific discovery. Researchers increasingly rely on advances in computer science, mathematics, computational science, data science, and large-scale computing and networking to increase our understanding of ourselves, our planet, and our universe. Berkeley Lab’s Computing Sciences Area researches, develops, and deploys new foundations, tools, and technologies to meet these needs and to advance research across a broad range of scientific disciplines.