1999.4.03
								        

Asia-Pacific Advanced Network(APAN)

Kilnam Chon Chair, APAN Committee chon@cosmos.kaist.ac.kr CONTENTS Introduction Network Topology Exchange Point Network Operation Network Technology Applications Funding Global Collaboration Concluding Remarks Reference Figures Tables INTRODUCTION The Internet started around thirty years ago as an experimental network project called Arpanet. It has been through the research and development experiment phase, the research and development production phase, and the transition phase. It is in the commercialization phase now. See Figure 1 for the diagrammatic description.[1] The second generation networking started with various experiments on gigabit testbeds around the world in 1980's and 1990's. It is moving into the research and development production phase now. The examples in North America are Next Generation Internet Initiative including vBNS, Internet 2, and CA*net 2.[2,3,4,5,6] North America set up the third generation network based on DWDM such as CA*net3, NTON, and ATDnet. In Europe, TEN-34 was deployed to cover much of Europe, and it is being upgraded to TEN-155 now. Various national high performance research networks have been deployed, too.[7,8,9,10] In Asia, various gigabit testbeds have been developed among many countries and regions including Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand.[11] Asia-Pacific Advanced Network Consortium(APAN) was formed in 1997 to interconnect these national and regional testbeds as well as other high performance networks to offer the production network service for the research and development community of the Asia-Pacific region with global interconnectivity.[12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20] APAN is to offer the network environment for the Asia-Pacific research community as well as to offer the testbed to carry on research and development on high performance networks at the same time. APAN consists of various networks, each of which owns international circuits and APAN itself does not own any international circuit. In this sense, APAN can be seen a consortium of research networks, each of which has its own mission. In addition to the international circuits, APAN established international exchange points in Seoul, Singapore and Tokyo, called XP-Seoul, XP-Singapore, and XP-Tokyo, respectively. They handle exchanges of both Layers 2 and 3 traffic with appropriate switches and routers. In addition, each APAN member network operates access points to handle domestic access to APAN as well as domestic exchange. Various servers are placed at the exchange points, access points, and other places. We are looking into evolution of these exchange and access points to become GigaPoPs in the coming years. APAN operates various working groups and committees to manage its mission. APAN manages network operation centers, engineering teams and secretariats. See Table 2 as well as APAN web site for further information. NETWORK TOPOLOGY The current APAN network topology can be found in Figure 2. It consists of various inter-continental and intra-continental links. The primary inter-continental link is between the APAN exchange points in Tokyo(XP-Tokyo) and STAR TAP in Chicago with an additional inter-continental link between XP-Singapore and STAR TAP. More inter-continental links are coming up across the Pacific and Eurasia Continent. Their bandwidth ranges between 14 and 73 Mbps now with the plan of the total inter-continental bandwidth of 155 Mbps in a few years. The intra-continental links are typically between 2 Mbps and 8 Mbps. We planned the inter-continental backbone of 45 Mbps or more originally, but this has to be postponed to the next phase due to lack of traffic and funding. Otherwise, we are covering all major countries and regions in Asia who need to be linked with 1.5 Mbps or more for (high performance) research and education traffic. Global links are initially handled in STAR TAP in Chicago, where Canadian high performance research network, CA*net 2, and various European high performance research networks such as TEN-155 could be reached. The direct link from Asia to Europe is being planned now.[27] Since there are no efficient broadband links such as the one through Siberia, it is very likely that we have to exchange packets with Europe through North America for time being. EXCHANGE POINT(XP) We have APAN hubs, called exchange points(XP) in Seoul,Singapore and Tokyo for packet exchange and other purposes. See Figure 3 for the sample configuration of the exchange points. It's primary function is to exchange ATM cells through permanent virtual path and circuit(PVP/PVC). In addition, XP routes IP packets, and converts the IP packets and the ATM cells. Each XP has various servers for network operation and applications. Examples are the route server for network operation, and cache and MBone servers for network applications. Interoperability with STAR TAP in Chicago and other exchange points of different continents are very important to form globally interoperable research networks. We expect some of APAN's exchange points to be the continental exchange points for Asia to peer with other continental exchange points in Americas and Europe. In addition to XPs, each APAN member network operates various access points, called APs to handle APAN access as well as domestic exchange. See Figure 3 for further information. Some of XPs and APs are expanded to evolve to become GigaPoPs. NETWORK OPERATION APAN network operation consists of two levels. At APAN level, we have the APAN Network Operation Centers in Australia, Japan, Korea, and Singapore to run its domestic network or coordinate its domestic networks in the case of Japan. APAN Network Operation Center in Japan operates various international links. One of them is TransPac, the primary trans-Pacific link, which is jointly operated with the USA counterpart. At the APAN member network level, APAN Network Operation Center coordinates various APAN member networks. See Table 1 for the list of APAN member networks. All Network Operation Centers are operated for 7 days a week and 24 hours a day. We recently added Engineering Teams to enhance the Network Operation Centers in the areas of IPv6, measurement, multicast and quality of service, called QBone. Bandwidth allocation is managed by Bandwidth Allocation Subcommittee, and is operated by Network Operation Centers. Each APAN member network has its own Acceptable Use Policy(AUP), which includes (High performance) project traffic, High performance research and education traffic, Research and education traffic, Commodity traffic, and Commercial traffic. TECHNOLOGY AREA We have the following technology working groups(WGs) to handle technology issues; Cache IPv6 Multicast Measurement Multimedia Network Design Quality of Service Satellite Internet Security Television Cache WG is to coordinate cache systems among APAN member networks. APAN participates to the global cache hierarchy system development with counterparts in North America, and Europe.[25] In addition the cache systems in some countries including Japan serves other member networks such as AI3 members as the parent cache. IPv6 WG of APAN investigates to test its usability for global high performance research networks. Initially, The IPv6 test network was developed in APAN with interconnection to other similar networks including the IPv6 network of Internet 2. Measurement is one of the most important projects of APAN. We need to measure on delay*throughput for long distance such as the trans-Pacific link and the Asia-Europe link. We need to find out actual performance on delay as well as throughput so that we can assess on real-time applications, broadband applications and others. We plan to collaborate with similar effort in other continents. Specifically, we are developing the virtual measurement networks with OC3MON, Skitter, and Surveyor.[33, 34, 35] Multicst with MBone is one of the major utilities in APAN as well as the major technical infrastrcuture. We provide high quality MBone with minimal packet loss to guarantee high quality. In addition, we offer multicast infrastructure in APAN, which is migrating toward MBGP-based multicast starting from Tokyo-XP. Multimedia WG is focusing on various multimedia support tools including multimedia conferencing systems and documentation tools at this moment. virtual reality technology is also included here. The group is evaluating several multimedia conferencing systems to be used in APAN now. Network Design WG concentrated on APAN network design and analysis initially, and its major work has been completed. Satellite Internet WG is looking into inclusion of satellite in APAN networks. AI3 is the first effort with hubs in Japan and several sites in Asia.[36] It is expanding the coverage to include Indian Ocean and number of sites now. Currently, the group is looking into addition of another hub in Singapore with links to Malaysia and Indonesia. Security is always an important issue in any network. We plan to deploy necessary security measure on our network, and carry on the security research. Television is a new working group to concentrate on television and video traffic in APAN such as Digital Video at 45 Mbps, MPEG 2 at 6~8 Mbps and MPEG 1 at 1.5~2 Mbps. The group is expected to have collaboration with the counterparts in Internet 2 in USA as well as CA*net 2 in Canada. USER COMMUNITY AREA Network usage is coordinated with the following Working Group under User Community Area; Agriculture WG BioInformatics WG Digital Library WG Education WG Grid WG Medical Informatics WG Monitoring WG Manufacturing WG Most of user communities of APAN are in science and engineering now. We plan to expand to cover research activities in social science and humanity. All applications need to reserve the necessary bandwidth through Resource Allocation Committee. Some applications need to reserve the bandwidth in multiple networks such as APAN and vBNS, or APAN and CA*net 2. We will try to arrange such a reservation easy to make. See APAN home page for the initial list of APAN application candidates, which are updated regularly. FUNDING Funding for APAN is handled in two ways. For the network infrastructure such as communication links and exchange points are paid by some of APAN members. In the other words, you have to own the communication link and/or the exchange points to be the primary member of APAN. The network operation centers and the secretariats are also volunteered by some of APAN members. Some of the operating expense may be covered by APAN membership fees and/or the relevant projects. INTER-CONTINENTAL COLLABORATION Inter-continental collaboration is one of the main objectives of APAN along intra-continental collaboration. APAN collaborates with various regional and national high performance research networks such as the ones in North America and Europe.[21,22,23,24] Many research networks around the world have links to STAR TAP in Chicago and other exchange points in North America now. See Figure 4 for the interconnection of the high performance research networks. They provide either Layer 2 link(ATM cell) or Layer 3 link(IP packet). These engineered interconnection is particularly important for high performance applications, which tend to require high performance quality of service connections. Various collaboration efforts are being done globally. Some of global policy collaborations are Global Interoperability of Broadband Networks(GIBN)[28] Coordinated Committee for Intercontinental Research Networking(CCIRN)[29] Some of technologies are coordinated globally in the following areas; Cache IPv6 Measurement Multicast including MBone Network Storage Quality of Service Security Television Applications are usually coordinated by specific user communities. CONCLUDING REMARKS The idea on APAN came up during APEC Symposium in Tsukuba, March 1996. Professor M. McRobbie and the author proposed the high performance research network for the Asia-Pacific region with the inter-continental links.[26] During the evenings of the symposium, the symposium participants got together to polish up the idea. With series of monthly meetings in the spring and summer of 1996, APAN was proposed. APAN Consortium was formed in June 1996 with four founding member countries; Australia, Japan, Korea, and Singapore, and two liaison member countries; Canada and USA. We originally planned the Asian backbone with 45 Mbps or more as well as the inter-continental link with 45 Mbps or more. The Asian backbone has not been realized due to lack of traffic and fund as well as the pricing structure which favors direct links to USA. We need to develop the Asian backbone in the next phases to promote intra-continental collaboration. Domestic infrastructures, i.e., domestic high performance research networks are not quite ready in many countries. Thus, we are being forced to develop the necessary domestic infrastructure at the same time. This is a typical "catch-up game" in Asia. Industry participation is minimal initially, and we need to put special effort to make the APAN initiative attractive to the industry including service industry and manufacturing industry as well as public sectors. We need to come up with many attractive applications with intra-continental collaboration and/or inter-continental collaboration. This is also new to us, at least not at this level of intensity. We believe that we have to go through much of learning with trial and error before we come up with many attractive applications. Looking into future, the first question is the same as the one the author raised in 1996 when APAN was discussed initially; "Why not gigabit?" We hope we can realize the gigabit Asian backbone with the gigabit inter-continental link early in the next decade as soon as other continents are ready with the gigabit networking. REFERENCE 1. Ivan Campos, "An External View," Proceedings of Cheyenne Mountain Workshop, August 1995. 2. Next Generation Internet Initiative; Draft Implementation Plan, July 1997. http://www.ngi.gov 3. Next Generation Internet Workshop Proceedings, 1996. http://www.cra.org/Policy/NGI 4. vBNS http://www.vbns.net 5. Internet 2 http://www.internet2/edu 6. CA*net 2 http://www.canarie.ca/c2 7. TEN-34 http://www.dante.net 8. SuperJanet http://www.ukerna.ac.uk 9. DFN http://www.dfn.de 10. Nordunet http://www.nordu.net 11. Proceedings of APII Testbed Forum, Seoul, Korea, May 1996. 12. Australia(AARNET, ACSys) http://www.avcc.edu.au/avcc/aarnet/index.html, http://acsys.anu.edu/au 13. Zhi Min Yang and Zhen Ming Lei, ATM Networking in China, Asian ISDN Council Working Groups, 17-22 October 1996. http://www.bta.net.cn, http://www.edu.cn, http://www.cnc.ac.cn 14. APAN-JP http://jp.apan.net/ 15. APAN-KR /korea 16. Malaysia(TEMAN) http://www.jaring.my/teman 17. Singapore http://www.singaren.net 18. Asia Institute of Technology, Bangkok http://www.ait.ac.th 19. NECTEC, Thailand http://www.nectec.or.th 20. Asia-Pacific Advanced Network / 21. Interop Proceedings, Tokyo, June 1996. 22. Proceedings of International Telecommunications Forum: ISS'97, Toronto, Canada, September 1997. 23. Annual CCIRN Meeting, June 1997. http://web1.hpc.org 24. G7 GII/GIBN Meeting, Rome, Italy, October 1997. http://homer.ic.ca/G7 25. NLANR http://www.nlanr.net 26. APEC Symposium Proceedings, Tsukuba, Japan, March 1996. 27. DANTE, CAPE: Feasibility Study for Connecting Asia Pacific and Europe, March 1997. 28. GIBN http://homer.ic.ca/G7 29. CCIRN http://www.ccirn.org 30. SURFNET, the Netherlands http://www.surfnet.nl 31. RENATER, France http://www.renater.fr 32. STAR TAP http://www.startap.net 33. OC3MON http://www.caida.org/Tools/Coral 34. Surveyor http://www.advanced.org/surveyor 35. Skitter http://www.caida.org/Tools/Coral 36. Asia Internet Infrastructure Initiative(AI3) http://www.ai3.net FIGURE Figure 1 Network Evolution Spiral Figure 2 APAN Network Topology Figure 3 APAN Exchange and Access Points Figure 4 Global Interconnection of Research Networks TABLE Table 1 Member Network List Table 2 APAN Organization