We propose the establishment of NorNet, a distributed network facility that will serve as a flexible platform for measurements, experimentation and innovation in the Norwegian communications infrastructure. NorNet will provide a unique platform for research and innovation in the networking domain, by filling the gap between existing network testbeds and production networks. Two guiding principles are central in constructing NorNet. First, we maximise flexibility for the hosted experiments, offering a core infrastructure that is programmable at the networking layer and above. This allows testing and experimentation with novel protocols and services that cannot be deployed in production networks. Second, we provide a high degree of realism through close integration with commercial networks in Norway. A central goal of the NorNet facility is to support experiments that explore the increased performance and robustness that can be achieved by dynamically exploiting the infrastructure from several access providers.
NorNet will consist of 10 programmable core nodes that are connected to all existing large network providers in Norway (NorNet Core), and a large number of smaller mobile hosts with multiple wireless interfaces (NorNet Edge). The core nodes will run virtualization software that allows users to create their own virtual networks for testing and experimentation with new or modified applications and networking protocols. The mobile hosts will be well suited for performing systematic long-term measurements and for testing out experimental protocols in a realistic environment.