Survey on Network Virtualization Using OpenFlow: Taxonomy, Opportunities, and Open Issues

Ahmed Abdelaziz, Ang Tan Fong, Mehdi Sookhak, Suleman Khan, Athanasios Vasilakos, Chee Sun Liew, Adnan Akhunzada

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


The popularity of network virtualization has recently regained considerable momentum because of the emergence of OpenFlow technology. It is essentially decouples a data plane from a control plane and promotes hardware programmability. Subsequently, OpenFlow facilitates the implementation of network virtualization. This study aims to provide an overview of different approaches to create a virtual network using OpenFlow technology. The paper also presents the OpenFlow components to compare conventional network architecture with OpenFlow network architecture, particularly in terms of the virtualization. A thematic OpenFlow network virtualization taxonomy is devised to categorize network virtualization approaches. Several testbeds that support OpenFlow network virtualization are discussed with case studies to show the capabilities of OpenFlow virtualization. Moreover, the advantages of popular OpenFlow controllers that are designed to enhance network virtualization is compared and analyzed. Finally, we present key research challenges that mainly focus on security, scalability, reliability, isolation, and monitoring in the OpenFlow virtual environment. Numerous potential directions to tackle the problems related to OpenFlow network virtualization are likewise discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4902-4932
Number of pages31
JournalKSII Transactions on Internet and Information Systems
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2016


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