Survey of Performance Acceleration Techniques for Network Function Virtualization
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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The ongoing network softwarization trend holds the promise to revolutionize network infrastructures by making them more flexible, reconfigurable, portable, and more adaptive than ever. Still, the migration from hard-coded/hard-wired network functions toward their software-programmable counterparts comes along with the need for tailored optimizations and acceleration techniques so as to avoid or at least mitigate the throughput/latency performance degradation with respect to fixed function network elements. The contribution of this paper is twofold. First, we provide a comprehensive overview of the host-based network function virtualization (NFV) ecosystem, covering a broad range of techniques, from low-level hardware acceleration and bump-in-the-wire offloading approaches to high-level software acceleration solutions, including the virtualization technique itself. Second, we derive guidelines regarding the design, development, and operation of NFV-based deployments that meet the flexibility and scalability requirements of modern communication networks.