Indexing million of packets per second using GPUs

F. Fusco, M. Vlachos, X. Dimitropoulos, L. Deri
Red Hat, Zurich
Internet Measurement Conference, 2013


   title={Indexing million of packets per second using GPUs},

   author={Fusco, Francesco and Vlachos, Michail and Dimitropoulos, Xenofontas and Deri, Luca},

   booktitle={Proc. of the 13th ACM SIGCOMM Conference on Internet Measurement},





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Network traffic recorders are devices that record massive volumes of network traffic for security applications, like retrospective forensic investigations. When deployed over very high-speed networks, traffic recorders must process and store millions of packets per second. To enable interactive explorations of such large traffic archives, packet indexing mechanisms are required. Indexing packets at wire rates (10 Gbps and above) on commodity hardware imposes unparalleled requirements for high throughput index creation. Such indexing throughputs are presently untenable with modern indexing technologies and current processor architectures. In this work, we propose to intelligently offload indexing to commodity Graphics Processing Units (GPUs). We introduce algorithms for building compressed bitmap indexes in real time on GPUs and show that we can achieve indexing throughputs of up to 185 millions records per second, which is an improvement by one order of magnitude compared to the state-of-the-art. This shows that indexing network traffic at multi-10-Gbps rates is well within reach.
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