Selected Papers - ISBN 978-90-77559-23-9

TNC2013 - Innovating Together


Innovating Together

The 29th TERENA Networking Conference was hosted by SURFnet, the Dutch National Research and Education Network in the picturesque city of Maastricht from 3-6 June 2013. The conference provided an opportunity for researchers, operators and suppliers of Research and Education Networks in Europe and beyond to meet, present and discuss their latest results and requirements in an ideal environment for promoting collaboration.

This year's conference theme was "Innovating Together". Networking in research and education today means much more than simply moving bits and bytes from place-to-place. The services deployed on top of the network are now more crucial than ever before, and social contact enables more effective international collaboration for both service providers and users. The conference included presentations and panel discussions on the whole range of Networking to Services and was organised with a plenary session each day and a number of parallel sessions in the following general tracks: Bits & Wires, Supporting Collaboration, Infrastructure & Services, Social & Secure and Using the Stuff.

Conference summary

This years TNC had as its core theme "Innovating Together". This simple phrase encompasses two fundamental concepts. The importance of "innovation", and striving for improvement as well as “together” and the importance of collaboration.

The programme committee sought to leverage these ideas even at the level of the conference organisation with the introduction of the "Open Space" for the informal brainstorming and exchange of ideas. Although introduced in 2013 formally as a post-conference event, it is expected to take a more important role in future years complementing the lightening talks and BoFs as a way of maximising the flow and exchange of information between participants.

A milestone event at the conference was the celebration of the 25th anniversary of SURFnet. Many congratulations to them and this was celebrated at the various social events throughout the conference.

The tone of the conference was set during the opening introductions by the alderman of the city of Maastricht who gave an incredibly energetic and enthusiastic expose of the history and Maastricht and that energy continued throughout the entire conference.

The opening keynote from Pablo Rodriguez, talking about internet thinking to foster innovation. This was a wide ranging talk, full of interesting observations, anecdotes and information showing how the internet creates the opportunity for innovative ideas and business to emerge and very much in-keeping with the spirit of innovation of the conference.

One of the key themes of the conference was the idea of NREN 3.0 and the possibility that the National Research Networks are facing a "challenge of relevance". Starting with a keynote from Steve Wolff (Internet2) the theme was continued through the sessions of "Its an NREN World" and a panel discussion on "Making the Future Happen". Steve made the point that in an increasingly connected world we need to be considering engineering a GREN or Global Research and Education Network. It made for some interesting discussions. In the following session, Dave Lambert (Internet2) followed this idea with an inspirational talk on why NREN’s are indeed relevant and an important catalyst for the future and also why they need to evolve. The panel discussion led by Tim Marshall from Janet UK, included members from the "Reykjavik" group formed after the last TNC in Iceland to look at the organisational issues facing the R&E networking for the future. This provoked some very frank exchanges of ideas and opinions which was a valuable contribution to the overall discussions during the conference. The streams of these sessions are available via the conference website:

Around the formal conference sessions were a host of interesting demonstrations and the live music performance with local musicians in Maastricht and at Napier university in Edinburgh thanks to the LOLA Project, were spectacular.

Another milestone was achieved with the demonstration of the first intercontinental 100Gbps circuit for research and education, the Advanced North Atlantic 100G Pilot project (ANA-100G).

Every TNC seems to reach new levels of participation and relevance in the changing world of Big Data, cloud computing and ever increasing levels of interconnectedness.

Thanks to the enthusiasm of the participants, presenters and local hosts as well as the programme committee and TERENA organisers made this one to remember.

Selected Papers Summary

Eleven papers presented in parallel sessions have been selected for this publication. These papers cover both research and practical approaches to some of the challenges faced by todays R&E networks. In keeping with the conference, the one thing they have in common is demonstrating innovation in addressing present and future challenges.

"NETCONFish: speaking the network language", was presented in the session Network management: Standards and Tools. In this paper Leonidas Poulopoulos from GRNET presents a solution to enable the rapid development of network management tools by having access to the underlying network configuration elements through a python interface.

The session on "Network Access Innovation" produced interesting papers from each of the three presenters addressing the issues of connecting the end customers, and providing services to them.

The deployment and management of virtual networks is a hot topic currently and Dave Wilson from HEANET presented "OpenNaaS and Virtual CPE:a new way to connect to the Internet". Simplifying the complex business of creating new network topologies by virtualising the network and providing the means to rapid deployment through the use of software frameworks was presented. In addition, HEAnet's live system for provisioning customer connections with both connectivity and routing was demonstrated during the extra events of the conference.

Łukasz Podleski presented a paper entitled "Next Generation Access Network – ADDONAS project approach". This is authored by 9 individuals from the Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center as well as authors from Northern Ireland, England and Germany. The authors use SDN concepts to address the practical problems associated with customers demanding an every increasing variety and quality of network services.

Not surprisingly, Software Defined Networking (SDN), in the broadest sense, is a concept that appeared in many presentations and papers. Specifically there was an OpenFlow session dedicated to that approach to SDN. Othman Othman M. M. from Kyushu University discussed how the OpenFlow controller technology could be modified to provide a more distributed control plane, thereby reducing the scalability concerns in the paper "Aiding OpenFlow Controller by Enhancing OpenFlow's Control Model, and Behaviour of Flows".

The session "Network Management: Platforms and Application" is a staple topic of any network conference, but also a great topic for innovative ideas. Warren Matthews, Danny Lee, Partha Kanuparthy, and Constantine Dovrolis from the Georgia Institute of Technology presented a paper entitled "PYTHIA: Detection, Diagnosis, and Localization of Network Performance Problems". This is a very practical approach to solving real problems of network performance and performing root cause analysis on todays R&E networks.

"Collaboration is Everything". Its hard to disagree. This session promoted the importance of collaboration in developing sustainable solutions to past and future challenges. This is well described in the paper "Ten years of creating advanced services in collaboration with the research community" which was presented by Daniela Brauner of the Brazilian NREN, RNP and shows how close collaborations have led to the development of advanced internet services in Brazil.

We might also consider that connectivity is everything as the appetite and demand to be always connected is seemingly growing without end. It almost seems natural that another concept, that of "crowd sourcing", using the collective power of the combined masses should be brought to the problem of WiFi coverage in the session "Born Mobile". Gareth Ayers and Jason Jones from Swansea University showed how to automatically generate self-mapping radio maps using crowd-sourced Wi-Fi coverage data in their paper "Crowd-Sourcing Wi-Fi Coverage Data to build Self-Mapping Radio Maps".

No conference would be complete without some reference to cloud computing! But with the strong business case for cloud solutions and the need for high performance networking there are natural synergies. "Data Here, Data There, Data Everywhere" captures the essence of the problems associated with data distribution and the preservation and privacy issues. Michal Jankowski from the Poznan Supercomputing and Networking Center presented "National Data Storage 2: Secure storage cloud with efficient and easy data access". This paper describes the implementation of a secure storage cloud and all the tradeoffs that implies.

A couple of related sessions, "Federation by Design" and "Will work for Attributes!" produced papers on the topics of federation policies and management of attributes. Mikael Linden, from the CSC - IT Center for Science, Finland, first talked first about the "Data Protection Code of Conduct for Identity Federations" and the approach to meet the requirements of the EU Data Protection Directive in federated identity management". This was followed by "Federated authorisation: Resource Entitlement Management System" and the different aspects that manage access to research data of the REMS system using federated identities.

Finally, but by no means least, in the list of papers submitted is the paper presented by Ronald van der Pol of SURFnet entitled "Experiences with MPTCP in an intercontinental multipathed OpenFlow network" presented in the session on "SDN and OpenFlow Applications". The paper demonstrates the issues involved in efficiently using multiple paths where they exist and intelligently assigning traffic to particular paths.

Archives of live–streamed speeches, speakers’ slides and other TNC2013 information are all available via the conference website: We look forward to very warmly welcoming you to TNC2014, which will be held on the 19 - 22 May 2014, Dublin, Ireland, and at

David Foster
TNC2013 Programme Committee Chair


(alphabetically by presenting author)

TNC2013 Programme Committee
David Foster CERN Switzerland
Guido Aben AARNet Australia
Lukas Hämmerle SWITCH Switzerland
Josh Howlett Janet UK
Ana Hunsinger Internet2 USA
Bartlomiej Idzikowski PSNC  
Leif Johansson SUNET Sweden
Zenon Mousmoulas GRNET Greece
Jiří Navrátil CESNET Czech Republic
Brook Schofield TERENA  
Niels van Dijk SURFnet Netherlands
Reimer Karlsen-Masur DFN-CERT Germany
Victor Reijs HEAnet Ireland
Roberto Sabatino DANTE  
Milan Sova (In Memoriam) CESNET Czech Republic
TERENA support  
Helmut Sverenyak TERENA VP Conferences, CESNET Czech Republic
Karel Vietsch TERENA
Valentino Cavalli TERENA
Bert van Pinxteren TERENA
Gyöngyi Horváth TERENA