Advancing software-defined networks: A survey

Jacob H. Cox, Joaquin Chung, Sean Donovan, Jared Ivey, Russell J. Clark, George Riley, Henry L. Owen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

152 Scopus citations


Having gained momentum from its promise of centralized control over distributed network architectures at bargain costs, software-defined Networking (SDN) is an ever-increasing topic of research. SDN offers a simplified means to dynamically control multiple simple switches via a single controller program, which contrasts with current network infrastructures where individual network operators manage network devices individually. Already, SDN has realized some extraordinary use cases outside of academia with companies, such as Google, AT&T, Microsoft, and many others. However, SDN still presents many research and operational challenges for government, industry, and campus networks. Because of these challenges, many SDN solutions have developed in an ad hoc manner that are not easily adopted by other organizations. Hence, this paper seeks to identify some of the many challenges where new and current researchers can still contribute to the advancement of SDN and further hasten its broadening adoption by network operators.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8066287
Pages (from-to)25487-25526
Number of pages40
JournalIEEE Access
StatePublished - Oct 11 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • 5G
  • APIs
  • Cloud
  • Data plane
  • Hybrid networks
  • Information-centric networking (ICN)
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Middleboxes
  • Network functions virtualization (NFV)
  • Network virtualization (NV)
  • SDN interfaces
  • SDN security
  • Software-defined RAN
  • Software-defined exchange (SDX)
  • Software-defined infrastructure (SDI)
  • Software-defined networking (SDN)
  • Software-defined wireless networks (SDWN)
  • Standards

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Advancing software-defined networks: A survey'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this