University of Cambridge > > Computer Laboratory Systems Research Group Seminar >  Leveraging over-provisioned WANs for next-generation services

Leveraging over-provisioned WANs for next-generation services

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Srinivasan Keshav.

The last decade has seen a large-scale commercialization of cloud computing and the emergence of global cloud providers. Cloud providers have rapidly expanded their datacenter deployments, network equipment and backbone capacity, preparing their infrastructure to meet the growing client demands. In this talk, I will re-examine the design and operation choices made by cloud providers in this phase of exponential growth using a cross-layer empirical analysis of the wide-area network (WAN) of a large commercial cloud provider. First, I will demonstrate how the knowledge of optical signal quality can enable traffic engineering systems to harness 75% more capacity from 80% of the optical wavelengths in the cloud backbone. Second, I will present mechanisms that minimize the hardware costs of provisioning long-haul WAN capacity by optically bypassing network hops where conversion of signals from optical to electrical domain is unnecessary and uneconomical. Identifying and fixing these inefficiencies in the operation of today’s cloud networks is crucial for enabling next-generation cloud services.


Rachee Singh ( is a senior researcher in the office of the CTO at Azure for Operators. Before this, she was a researcher in the Mobility and Networking group of Microsoft Research, Redmond. Her research interests are in computer networking with a focus on wide area network performance and monitoring. She has a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and is a recipient of the Google PhD fellowship in Systems and Networking. In a previous life, she developed routing protocol features for Ethernet switches at Arista Networks.

This talk is part of the Computer Laboratory Systems Research Group Seminar series.

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