Global Lambda Integrated Facility

Subject Re: Network Description Files for GLIF
From "Steven S. Wallace" <ssw@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date Thu, 2 Jun 2005 12:48:51 -0500

Here's something I'm working to address similar needs for the Quilt. I think this could scale internationally.

Here's the idea: TXT "us-uk-nl-ca"
FQDN   TXT record showing what country codes contain network map data TXT "IN-OH-FL"
FQDN TXT record showing what states (in the US) have network map data TXT "TFN"
FQDN TXT record showing the name of network(s) in Ohio TXT  "Link=Columbus, OH-Cincinnati, OH" TXT  "Status=Existing" TXT   "Link=Columbus, OH-Chicago, IL" TXT   "Status=Existing"

These are records that specify the network segment endpoints and the segment's status. An application would fetch sequential records until it hit the last one. In this example OARnet (they run the TFN) would be delegated authority for

Each RON would simply maintain their own delegation (zone file). My lab would make an application available that walked the DNS data and constructed a map. Since there may be multiple TXT records for a given FQDN, we could a small set of attributes for each link.

What do you all think?


On Jun 2, 2005, at 12:37 PM, Jeroen van der Ham wrote:

Hello everyone,

In the last two months we started working on a way to make a description of our network and resources at Netherlight and Lighthouse, Amsterdam. We
had several goals in mind for making such a description:
- For ourselves, to have a machine readable overview of our network,
possibly including its current (automatically extracted) configuration.
- For possible users, so that they can see what we resources we have,
possibly what is available at the moment. The description also contains the list of possible entry points to our network. Ultimately, these entry points should point to the network description of the relevant provider. - Problem detection, if you have a complete overview of the configuration
of your network, written in a machine-readable format, configuration
problems can be detected more easily. If every network owner were to
publish this in a predefined format, then this can also be used to detect
inter-domain problems, by pointing at the configuration file of the
connecting network in the relevant places.
- Publication in GLIF, to make lambda path setup between participants
easier or even completely automatic.

Yesterday Cees de Laat pointed us at the discussion currently going in
the GLIF community regarding the visualization of the networks.
We think that if everyone in GLIF (automatically) publishes a description of their network in a predefined machine readable way, this information can be gathered by applications more easily. This will make it easier to
solve problems like the ones Kees Neggers raised in a recent mail
(creating a repository, generating graphics, handling policies).

For example the excellent graphics tool Greg Cole can be used as is, but the database is not filled with information entered through a web form, but instead automatically by crawlers reading the network descriptions.
Such crawlers can also be used to periodically collect the network
information and put this in a single repository to provide an overview. On the other hand with a machine-readable format, it is also possible to
parse the relevant information on demand.

We are currently making a draft version of a schema for describing
networks, including information about the capabilities, references to the
polices and services. We will post this to the mailinglist soon.

Bert Andree, Freek Dijkstra, Paola Grosso, Bas van Oudenaarde and Jeroen
van der Ham.