100G SDN Testbed


The testbed consists of a dedicated 100G wave from LBL to StarLight, and a 10G overlay on the production network that includes Denver, Washington DC, New York, Atlanta, Amsterdam, and Geneva. There are several devices that support SDN experiments, and several hosts, including hosts with 40G and 100G NICs. A science DMZ for experimentation is being setup at OSF/NERSC, and a GENI Rack (NSF funded) has been attached to our testbed as well.


The objective is to provide network researchers with a realistic environment for testing. Current testbed enables 100G application / middleware experiments, Science DMZ and SDN control/data plane experiments. This testbed provides:

  • A rapidly reconfigurable high-performance network research environment that will enable researchers to accelerate the development and deployment of 100G networking through prototyping, testing, and validation of advanced networking concepts.
  • An experimental network environment for vendors, ISPs, and carriers to carry out interoperability tests necessary to implement end-to-end heterogeneous networking components (currently at layer-2/3 only).
  • Support for prototyping middleware and software stacks to enable the development and testing of 100G science applications.
  • A network test environment where reproducible tests can be run. Most network experiments are not reproducible due to the fact that controlling background traffic is not possible on production networks. Good science requires reproducibility to validate results
  • An experimental network environment that eliminates the need for network researchers to obtain funding to build their own network testbeds or use a laboratory environment to prove the viability of their innovative ideas.
  • A testbed facility with open access to all researchers. 


  • Access to high-speed hosts with 1x100G and 2x40G ethernet, fast RAID disk systems, running the latest Linux kernel.
  • Ability to create point to point as well as multi-point circuits using SDN
  • Ability to try out various types of QoS options with SDN/OF
  • Ability to add your own virtual switches (OVS) and virtual end-sites using VMs on the testbed.

The testbed will be continually evolving to add new capabilities and the updates will be added to the Testbed Description page.


Researchers from National Labs, Universities, and Industry wanting access to the ESnet Testbed must submit a 1-2 page proposal, described in the Proposal Process page.