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Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis > funding : atomized_routing
Atoms - Atomized Routing
sponsored by:
NLNet Labs Foundation
supported by:
CAIDA is researching and implementing modifications to BGP routing that aggregate prefixes into equivalence classes (policy atoms) based on common AS path from a given topological location. The motivation behind development of BGP atomization mechanisms is to achieve potential savings in computation and communication costs (by absorbing routing dynamics of prefixes into coarser grained atoms), as well as reduction in BGP table size (there will be far fewer atoms than prefixes). A good introduction to atoms from Tel Aviv University is available here.



Atoms software (and its bundled component script, straightenRV) is available for download.

Mailing List

The mailing list for the discussion of atoms is no longer maintained.

Router Development Tasks

  • Develop an atomized router, a BGP router with extensions for atoms. The router should be deployable in the Internet without breaking BGP or forwarding. The router is based on Zebra BGP router code base. Implementations based on previous and current atoms architectures completed. Source code to be released by February 2004.
  • Test atomized routing in a confined deployment scenario using vimage. done.
  • Simulate and measure atomized routing performance in BGP++. in progress.

Analysis Tasks

  • Analyse number and stability of (hypothetical) declared atoms based on observed BGP table snapshots and BGP updates of prefixes. done.
  • Transform observed BGP updates on prefixes to an equivalent stream of updates on (hypothetical) declared atoms. Analyse the the resulting atom update stream. done.
  • Repeat the above analysis under provider-declared atoms, i.e. under the assumption that providers are able to aggregate prefixes originated by stub customers into atoms. done.
  • Determine properties and dynamics of atoms with respect to BGP attributes other than AS path. done.

Other Tasks

  • Rewrite and release Andre Broido's scripts for analysing Route Views tables and computing policy atoms observed in the current Internet. done.
  • Create a bibliography of BGP related research. This has been incorporated into CAIDA's networking bibliography. done.


  • Andre Broido
  • k claffy
  • Christos Xenofontas Dimitropoulos
  • Ruomei Gao
  • Bradley Huffaker
  • Young Hyun
  • Ronald van der Pol
  • Patrick Verkaik (primary contact)


BGP Bibliographies


  • BGP++ a BGP/Zebra/C++ extension to the ns-2 simulator
  • vimage FreeBSD network stack cloning

  Last Modified: Tue Oct-13-2020 22:21:55 UTC
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