The Advanced Networking group at Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center conducts research on network performance and analysis in support of high-performance computing applications. We also develop software to support heterogeneous distributed supercomputing applications and to implement high-speed interfaces to archival and mass storage systems.
Our researchers focus on such areas as TCP implementations, tools to tune TCP for better performance and software to monitor and improve network performance. In addition to our own research, PSC networking experts participate in national networking research efforts such as Web10G and Net100.
Three Rivers Optical Exchange
Three Rivers Optical Exchange is a regional network aggregation point providing high speed commodity and research network access to sites in western and central Pennsylvania. The primary focus for the Exchange staff is providing cost effective, high capacity, state-of-the-art network connectivity to the university community. They also provide well defined network services to both community (K-12, government) and commercial entities in western Pennsylvania.
Information on network status, architecture, outages, maintenance schedules and routing updates is included on the Three Rivers Optical Exchange site.
Web10G is working to provide an instrumented implementation of TCP as part of standard Linux. This implementation will expose TCP's hidden machinery and allow any interested user to "look under the hood" and see how TCP actually functions under normal network use. It promises innovations in performance, stability, optimization, and network diagnostics to anyone who wants to fully exploit modern high bandwidth connections. Web10G offers users, developers, and network engineers the tools to diagnose and correct hidden network issues.
The PSC Networking group is actively involved in research to promote the synergy between high performance computing and modern networking technologies.
Networking Research Papers
Networking Tools, software, and information
- TestRig 2.0
- A bootable Linux ISO used to automatically and conveniently generate network performance data for analysis by PSC engineers.
- High Performance Enabled SSH/SCP
- Maximize the performance of secure copying and connections between hosts on a high-performance network.
- Automatic diagnostic server for troubleshooting end-systems and last-mile network problems.
- Enabling High Performance Data Transfers
- TCP performance tuning
- Poll-Switch - SNMP poll a layer-2 device
- Retrieving host and port information from a layer-2 switch running an SNMP agent.
- Scan hosts on a VLAN or network for vulnerabilities
- Enable data communication via a simple API for various IP-based networking protocols
Historical tools, software, and information
- SAMI (NIMI)
- Creating a Secure and Accountable Measurement Infrastructure
TCP Rate-Halving - An algorithm to adjust the congestion window which sustains the self-clocking of TCP and avoids bursts.
Automatic TCP Buffer Tuning - Allowing TCP to tune its own buffers to suit the network path and to adjust for limited memory.
Experimental TCP Selective Acknowledgment Implementations
PSC supported TCP Implementations
Automatic Buffer Tuning
TCP Friendly - Information about TCP-friendly congestion control for rate-based applications.
Internet Performance and IP Provider Metrics
Draft Connectivity Metric for the IETF IPPM working group.
Traceroute Reno (TReno): TReno (Traceroute Reno) is a networking tool designed to test network performance under a load similar to that of TCP.
Information about the PSC TReno server
Source code for modifications to traceroute. These modifications include, among other things, options MTU discovery and statistics gathering.