This work concentrates on the study of anycast support at the routing layer within networks. Existing anycast work is being performed as an application layer solution, but we feel there are some advantages to providing anycast services at the routing layer. This is perhaps especially true in mobile, wireless networks. Regardless, our initial work in anycast routing is quite general and is equally applicable to fixed, wired networks.The following is a summary of some past accomplishments in this area.

We have designed and developed anycast extensions to existing classes of routing algorithms:

  • distance-vector algorithms
  • link-state algorithms
  • link-reversal algorithms

In addition, we have implemented a simulation model of anycast extensions to a link-state routing algorithm.

We have completed an initial simulation study of anycast routing and provided a comparison with traditional unicast routing based techniques. This work demonstrated the following features regarding our approach:

  • greater efficiency of anycast routing
  • ability to ease the configuration and management required to achieve a given level of connection robustness
  • potential to reduce connection setup latency and message packet delay

See below for a network animator (nam) example of the shortest path-based anycast protocol in action.

  • The visualization consists of a grid of network nodes with dynamic links and 2 pre-placed anycast nodes
  • All nodes in the network randomly source data and data is routed to the shortest hop "available" anycast destination

This simulation of our anycast routing approaches were initially implemented in Opnet. We subsequently converted the OPNET traces of the simulation to ns/nam compatible traces for nam visualization

Download Anycast NAM Demo

NS/NAM download site