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Smart-NICs: Power Proxying for Reduced Power Consumption in Network Edge Devices

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5 Author(s)
Sabhanatarajan, K. ; ECE Dept., Florida Univ., Gainesville, FL ; Gordon-Ross, A. ; Oden, M. ; Navada, M.
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The number of edge devices connected to the Internet is increasing at a rapid rate. To maintain network connectivity, the majority of these devices remain completely powered on when idle, wasting unnecessary energy. A novel idea to conserve energy while maintaining network connectivity is to place the computer in standby mode during idle periods and delegate the packet-handling functions to its network interface card (NIC). The NIC, acting as a liaison for the host, can proxy a variety of network protocols, increasing the standby time of the host without compromising its active connections. In this paper, we analyze the requirements of such a packet classifier and design a low-power hardware-based packet classification technique, which, compared to a software-based packet classification technique, consumes 59% less energy with a 9x speedup.

Published in:

Symposium on VLSI, 2008. ISVLSI '08. IEEE Computer Society Annual

Date of Conference:

7-9 April 2008