Off-campus UMass Amherst users: To download campus access dissertations, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your UMass Amherst user name and password.

Non-UMass Amherst users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this dissertation through interlibrary loan.

Dissertations that have an embargo placed on them will not be available to anyone until the embargo expires.

Author ORCID Identifier



Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded


First Advisor

Tilman Wolf

Second Advisor

Michael Zink

Third Advisor

David Irwin

Fourth Advisor

Jim Griffioen

Subject Categories

Computer and Systems Architecture | OS and Networks


The Internet has been very successful in supporting many network applications. As the diversity of uses for the Internet has increased, many protocols and services have been developed by the industry and the research community. However, many of them failed to get deployed in the Internet. One challenge of deploying these novel ideas in operational network is that the network providers need to be involved in the process. Many novel network protocols and services, like multicast and end-to-end QoS, need the support from network providers. However, since network providers are typically driven by business reasons, if they can not get economic profit from supporting new protocols and services, they will not deploy them. Therefore, we conclude that the lack of explicit economic relationship in the current Internet hinders the innovation of itself, and it is critical that a network architecture intrinsically considers economic relationships. ChoiceNet is an NSF funded Future Internet Architecture (FIA) project that aims to address these challenges. ChoiceNet proposes an ``economy plane'' of the Internet to explicitly represent economic relationship within the architecture. This economy plane enables entities in the network to dynamically set up fine-grained, short-term economic contracts for network services. A marketplace can be established for advertising and selling services. The services can be simple path services ( pathlets ) between end-points, or more complex processing and storage services (e.g., transcoding and caching). ChoiceNet is a comprehensive project, and its architecture is designed by researchers from several institutes. This work will not cover every aspect of it. Instead, this work will focus on five aspects of ChoiceNet: 1) service definition and protocol design, 2) marketplace design, 3) use plane design, 4) path finding algorithm design, and 5) access control for services. Service definition aims at a unified and extensible description of services, and the method to compose them. Marketplace design discusses the protocols used to advertise and request services. The use plane design describes how network providers and users will access the Marketplace while preserving the existing infrastructure and applications, it also discusses how to progressively deploy ChoiceNet in the current Internet. The path finding algorithm design proposes ParetoBFS, an algorithm finding all the Pareto-optimal paths in a multi-criteria network. The access control discusses how to prevent unauthorized usage of the services, we present OrthCredential, an algorithm for high-performance access control in ChoiceNet. To prove the feasibility of such an economy plane, this work presents a Software Defined Networking (SDN) based implementation of ChoiceNet. The implementation has been deployed and tested on GENI, a global test bed for network architectures. By designing and implementing ChoiceNet, this work tries to offer a network architecture that users can select from several different network services rather than being limited to a single choice. By enabling greater choice, ChoiceNet can promote competition among providers for price and quality. This competition will lead to lower prices and higher quality services, which are beneficial for consumers and eventually help bring sustained innovation into the Internet.