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Computer networks provide an increasing number of services that require complex processing of packets, for example firewalls, load balancing, network storage, and TCP/IP offloading. Such services require the use of powerful network processors to provide the necessary performance and flexibility. But NPs also introduce new challenges. It is important to study the performance of NP system so that one can take full advantage of NP resources to achieve the required performance for a given application. It is therefore desirable to develop a framework for analyzing performance of NP-based applications. The framework divides the network processor system into four levels, and incorporates Petri net, AD AG and a new analysis method- "line space" to evaluate NP-based system performance, which simplifies the complexity of multilevel parallel system performance evaluation and insures its efficiency and precision. We apply our methodology to an Intel's reference design, and show that the analytical results using our method match the experimental results from actual implementation.
Date of Conference: 27-30 Nov. 2006