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Reduction of unnecessary energy consumption is becoming a major concern in wired networking, because of the potential economical benefits and of its expected environmental impact. These issues, usually referred to as "green networking", relate to embedding energy-awareness in the design, in the devices and in the protocols of networks. In this work, we first formulate a more precise definition of the "green" attribute. We furthermore identify a few paradigms that are the key enablers of energy-aware networking research. We then overview the current state of the art and provide a taxonomy of the relevant work, with a special focus on wired networking. At a high level, we identify four branches of green networking research that stem from different observations on the root causes of energy waste, namely (i) adaptive link rate, (ii) interface proxying, (iii) energy-aware infrastructure and (iv) energy-aware applications. In this work, we not only explore specific proposals pertaining to each of the above branches, but also offer a perspective for research.
Date of Publication: First Quarter 2012