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The growing availability of low-cost network-enabled consumer equipment is pushing for novel domotic scenarios characterized by a plethora of heterogeneous devices providing services in a peer-to-peer fashion. In particular, UPnP is widely recognized as the most spread and adopted industrial standard to support inter-device discovery and communication in home networks. However, UPnP scope is traditionally limited to domotic islands, i.e., devices communicate only if in direct visibility and deployed in the same subnet. The paper presents a novel approach to easily and efficiently federate UPnP-based domotic islands, supporting seamless interworking of legacy UPnP devices deployed in different networks at multi-hop distance. In addition, the proposed solution supports Internet federation of remote islands, based on user-managed named groups, to allow the secure discovery and fruition of peer-to-peer services only to authorized users. The proposed solution has been implemented, deployed, and thoroughly tested on several platforms, ranging from high-performance desktop PCs to off-the-shelf smartphones and router-like OSGi-enabled equipment. The reported performance results demonstrate that our solution is suitable even for low-end devices with limited hardware capabilities.
Date of Publication: August 2012