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 CSE 561: Computer Networks
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Networked systems are appearing at all granularities, from planetary scale web services such as Google and Akamai, to distributed databases for managing large corporations, to massively parallel multiplayer games, to large scale sensor networks. In each case, there is a need for a deep understanding of fundamental principles of networked systems in order to achieve optimal and secure execution. It is within this context, we will explore the following types of questions in this graduate level course on networked systems.

The course consists of three major components:


Instructor: Arvind Krishnamurthy (office hour: Mondays at 1:30pm)
TA: Lisa Glendenning (email: lglenden)

Lectures: Mondays and Wednesdays, Noon-1:20pm.

Mailing list: When you register for the course, you'll automatically be added to the class mailing list (cse561a_wi12@uw.edu). To manage your subscription, visit the mailing list web page. You've been subscribed using your u.washington.edu email address. But, you can modify your subscription to use an email address of your choice. Note that you can only post to the mailing list from your subscribed email address.


Discussion Board

Here's the link to the class discussion board:


The discussion board will be used to post announcements, questions, and other administrivia. For each lecture other than the first, we will create a discussion thread for the papers that we will discuss in the class. You are required to add a unique comment to the discussion for each of the threads by 9am on the day of the class. Please keep the entries short: they can be anything that provides insight into the paper, e.g., a summary, the broader context for the work, a question about some aspect of the paper, an answer to someone else's question, a methodological flaw, or a pointer to related work not described by the paper.


Here's the link to the class project wiki:

You will need to log into your UW Google Apps account to access and edit the wiki. You might need to activate your UW Google Apps account in MyUW first.


The reading list is a mixture of textbook material and research papers. The textbook material is designed to help you understand the basics of the area; the research papers are to bring you to the state of the art. It is a requirement that you do the reading before class, as we will take the research papers as a starting point, not the end point of the class discussion. A goal for each class meeting will be to identify the limits of the research community's knowledge - what are the open research problems for that topic? An illustration of how little we really know about network protocol design is that we will be able to do this even for the most basic of topics.





January 4 Introduction
  • Course logistics.
  • Basic material regarding networks and Internet design.
  • Background reading material: Hari's course notes
Intro notes
January 9 Internet design Internet design
ARPAnet routing
January 11

Interdomain routing

BGP notes
January 16 Holiday - No Class
January 18 Snow Day - No Class
January 23 Router design Gigabit router
Project pre-proposal
January 25 Transport protocols TCP
January 30 Peer-to-peer systems BitTorrent
February 1 Overlays Akamai
Project proposal
February 6 Key-value stores Chord DHT
February 8 Wrap up DHTs
February 13 Cloud computing Dryad
February 15 Datacenters VL2
Project Milestone #1
February 20 Holiday - No Class
February 22/27 Mobility TCP Variants
3G Background
February 29 Social networks Project Milestone #2
March 5 Anonymity, secure communications
March 7 Wrap-up and Quiz Quiz
March 14 Exam week Project due

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