Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Coding (NC) are two key concepts in networkingthat have garnered much attention in recent years. On the one hand, SDN’s potential to virtualize services in the Internet allows a large flexibility not only for routing data, but also to manage buffering, scheduling, and processing over the network. On the other hand, NC has shown great potential for increasing robustness and performance when deployed on intermediate nodes in the network. This new paradigm changes the dynamics of network protocols, requiring new designs that exploit its potential. This paper advocates for the use of SDN to bring about future Internet and 5G network services by incorporating NC functionalities.
The inherent flexibility of both SDN and NC provides a fertile ground to envision more efficient, robust, and secure networking designs, that may also incorporate content caching and storage, all of which are key challenges of the future Internet and the upcoming 5Gnetworks. This paper proposes some of the keys behind this intersection and supports it with use cases as well as a an implementation that integrated the Kodo library (NC) into OpenFlow (SDN). Our results on single-hop, multi-hop, and multi-path scenarios show that gains of 3x to 11x are attainable over standard TCP and Multi-Path TCP.