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Authors: Nikos Makris, Kostas Choumas, Christos Zarafetas, Thanasis Korakis and Leandros Tassiulas

Conference: WCNC 2016, Doha, Qatar, April 2016

Abstract:The wide proliferation of IEEE 802.11 compatible devices and the provisioning of costless Internet connectivity in most cases, have created fertile ground for investigating seamless client mobility and handoff management from a cellular technology to any wireless access point available. Although handoffs and client mobility are currently addressed by the IEEE 802.21 standard along with mobility management protocols such as Mobile IPv6, yet no remarkable efforts exist for the wide deployment of such solutions. Moreover, the adoption of such architectures requires considerable changes in the mobile node’s networking stack. In this work, we propose a Software Defined Networking technology inspired scheme for managing client mobility among heterogeneous wireless networks, by adopting changes only on the network edges. Our solution is compatible with the existing IPv4 and IPv6 addressing solutions. By employing the OpenFlow technology on the border of our network with the Internet, we manage to keep both ends of the network aware of any topology changes, and thus preserve any already established connections, resulting in a seamless handoff process. We evaluate our technique in a real network setup, by employing WiFi and LTE technologies and benchmark it using higher layer protocols with multi-homing features, namely Stream Control Transmission Protocol and Multipath TCP.

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