Reducing and Balancing Flow Table Entries in Software-Defined Networks

Xuya Jia, Yong Jiang, Zehua Guo, Zhenwei Wu

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

15 Scopus citations


Software-Defined Networking (SDN) allows flexible and efficient management of networks. However, the limited capacity of flow tables in SDN switches hinders the deployment of SDN. In this paper, we propose a novel routing scheme to improve the efficiency of flow tables in SDNs. To efficiently use the routing scheme, we formulate an optimization problem with the objective to maximize the number of flows in the network, constrained by the limited flow table space in SDN switches. The problem is NP-hard, and we propose the K Similar Greedy Tree (KSGT) algorithm to solve it. We evaluate the performance of KSGT against 'traditional' SDN solutions with real-world topologies and traffic. The results show that, compared to the existing solutions, KSGT can reduce about 60% of flow entries when processing the same amount of flows, and improve about 25% of the successful installation and forwarding flows under the same flow table space.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - 2016 IEEE 41st Conference on Local Computer Networks, LCN 2016
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781509020546
StatePublished - Dec 22 2016
Event41st IEEE Conference on Local Computer Networks, LCN 2016 - Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Duration: Nov 7 2016Nov 10 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings - Conference on Local Computer Networks, LCN


Other41st IEEE Conference on Local Computer Networks, LCN 2016
CountryUnited Arab Emirates

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work is supported by the National Research Program of China (973) under grant No. 2012CB315803, the National Natural Science Foundation of China under grant No. 61402255, the R&D Program of Shenzhen under grant No. ZDSYS20140509172959989, No. JSGG20150512162853495, No. Shenfagai[2015]986, and JCYJ20150630170146830.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 IEEE.

Copyright 2017 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Flow table reuse
  • MPLS
  • Overhead
  • Software-Defined Networking

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