Network Algorithmics

An Interdisciplinary Approach to Designing Fast Networked Devices


  • George Varghese, University of California--San Diego, San Diego, CA

In designing a network device, you make dozens of decisions that affect the speed with which it will perform—sometimes for better, but sometimes for worse. Network Algorithmics provides a complete, coherent methodology for maximizing speed while meeting your other design goals.Author George Varghese begins by laying out the implementation bottlenecks that are most often encountered at four disparate levels of implementation: protocol, OS, hardware, and architecture. He then derives 15 solid principles—ranging from the commonly recognized to the groundbreaking—that are key to breaking these bottlenecks.The rest of the book is devoted to a systematic application of these principles to bottlenecks found specifically in endnodes, interconnect devices, and specialty functions such as security and measurement that can be located anywhere along the network. This immensely practical, clearly presented information will benefit anyone involved with network implementation, as well as students who have made this work their goal.FOR INSTRUCTORS: To obtain access to the solutions manual for this title simply register on our textbook website ( request access to the Computer Science subject area. Once approved (usually within one business day) you will be able to access all of the instructor-only materials through the "Instructor Manual" link on this book's academic web page at
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Network protocol implementers, from server vendors (i.e., Sun, IBM, Microsoft) to router vendors (i.e., Cisco, Juniper, PMC Sierra, Redback, Alcatel, Intel Networks). Also appeals to designers of efficient Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) and firewalls which includes implementers at companies such as Cisco, ISS, Raptor, Symantec, Checkpoint, Network Associates, as well as companies and startups in security, storage and networking.


Book information

  • Published: December 2004
  • ISBN: 978-0-12-088477-3


"George Varghese has had a remarkable impact on the real world of networking with his algorithmic innovations over many years. The networking research and development community is fortunate that he has now distilled his knowledge in this very readable, insightful, and much-needed book." --Bruce Davie, Cisco Fellow, Cisco Systems "This book nicely describes implementation tricks for building fast networking stacks, particularly in routers. This is a much needed book, I don't know of any other that covers this sort of implementation advice. George Varghese has invented several techniques to help speed up the Internet and in his book he provides interesting insight into this, and much more." --Radia Perlman, Distinguished Engineer, Sun Microsystems

Table of Contents

1 Introducing Network Algorithmics2 Network Implementation Models3 Fifteen Implementation Principles4 Principles in Action5 Copying Data6 Transfering Control7 Maintaining Timers8 Demultiplexing9 Protocol Processing10 Exact Match Lookups11 Prefix Match Lookups12 Packet Classification13 Switching14 Scheduling Packets15 Routers as Distributed Systems16 Measuring Network Traffic17 Network Security18 ConclusionsAppendix A Detailed Models