Journal article Open Access
Lefteris Mamatas; Stuart Clayman; Alex Galis
There is a major shift in the Internet towards using programmable and virtualized network devices, offering significant flexibility and adaptability. New networking paradigms such as software‐defined networking and network function virtualization bring networks and IT domains closer together using appropriate architectural abstractions. In this context, new and novel information management features need to be introduced. The deployed management and control entities in these environments should have a clear, and often global, view of the network environment and should exchange information in alternative ways (e.g. some may have real‐time constraints, while others may be throughput sensitive). Our work addresses these two network management features. In this paper, we define the research challenges in information management for virtualized highly dynamic environments. Along these lines, we introduce and present the design details of the virtual infrastructure information service, a new management information handling framework that (i) provides logically centralized information flow establishment, optimization, coordination, synchronization and management with respect to the diverse management and control entity demands; (ii) is designed according to the characteristics and requirements of software‐defined networking and network function virtualization; and (iii) inter‐operates with our own virtualized infrastructure framework. Evaluation results demonstrating the flexible and adaptable behaviour of the virtual infrastructure information service and its main operations are included in the paper.