DATE: Thursday, November 18, 2004
TIME: Noon - 1 pm
PLACE: Hamerschlag Hall D-210

Emin Gun Sirer
Cornell University

The Case for a New Name System for the Internet

The current Domain Name System (DNS), the Internet service responsible for translating textual host names to IP addresses suitable for routing, is inherently slow, vulnerable to distributed denial of service attacks, and prone to load imbalance. Adding new functionality to DNS, such as rapid dissemination of updates to name bindings, is difficult or impossible. And the DNS architecture necessarily fosters monopolies, with their accompanying problems.

In this talk, I will first describe how these problems stem fundamentally from the static, hierarchical structure of the current DNS and quantify their severity. I will then describe an alternative, peer-to-peer architecture for a new Domain Name Service that provides high performance, resilience against denial-of-service attacks, and automatic load balancing in the presence of flash crowds (the "slashdot effect"). This new architecture builds on a recent result in proactive caching by which scalable peer-to-peer overlays can achieve a targeted level of performance with a minimal number of object replicas. The resulting system, CoDoNS, offers strong performance, failure resilience and load balancing guarantees, has been deployed throughout the globe over Planetlab, and can serve either as a high-performance replacement for legacy DNS or as a backup in case legacy DNS comes under attack.

Emin Gun Sirer is an Assistant Professor at Cornell University, where his current research agenda focuses on self-organizing systems. His current work spans peer-to-peer systems, operating system support for ad hoc and sensor networks, and networked systems. He received his PhD from the University of Washington in 2002.

Host: M. Satyanarayanan

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