Professor, University of Oslo, Norway
Title: The End of the Socket API, and the Beginning of a Real Internet Transport Layer
Time: 16:00 - 18:00, Monday February 18, 2019
The Internet's Transport Layer has become ossified: the static binding between applications and transport protocols has made it impossible to deploy general-purpose transport protocols other than TCP or UDP at a large scale. Specialized protocols, typically over UDP, are customized per application, and the wheel is being re-invented (e.g., SCTP, Adobe's RTMFP and QUIC all support multi-streaming). All of this could now change. The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) Transport Services (TAPS) Working Group specifies a modern protocol-agnostic API and mechanisms underneath it, to engage and control protocols based on application requirements. As a contributor to the TAPS WG, Apple has recently made a move towards a TAPS-conformant transport system with their new Network.framework API (part of the beta for iOS 12 and macOS Mojave), first presented at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2018. Network.framework, like any other TAPS transport system, breaks the static binding between applications and transport protocols. This allows the Operating System to dynamically test multiple network interfaces and protocols, configuring them according to the application's and user's needs. This tutorial will: explain why Berkeley sockets are no suitable abstraction for the modern Internet; present the ongoing work of the IETF TAPS WG, introduce the current TAPS API, and give an overview of the "under the hood" operation of a TAPS transport system; introduce NEAT, an open-source user-space TAPS implementation; explain how TAPS changes the game for Internet transport, allowing to gradually deploy radically different technologies in a fundamentally new and much better way than before -- this will use the Recursive InterNetwork Architecture (RINA) as an example.
Michael Welzl is a full professor in the Department of Informatics of the University of Oslo since 2009. He received his Ph.D. (with distinction) and his habilitation from the University of Darmstadt / Germany in 2002 and 2007, respectively. Michael Welzl has led the effort to create the IETF TAPS Working Group and is one of its major contributors. He was also the technical manager of the European Project "NEAT" which has developed a TAPS system, and he has been involved in the IETF and transport layer research in general for many years - for example, with 11 years of chairing the IRTF Internet Congestion Control Research Group, authoring of several RFCs, and publishing the only textbook on network congestion control ("Network Congestion Control: Managing Internet Traffic", John Wiley & Sons, 2007).