First International Workshop
on Protocols for Fast
Long-Distance Networks

February 3-4, 2003
CERN, Geneva, Switzerland









Bill St. Arnaud, Wade Hong, Corrie Kost and Bryan Caron, Canarie, Canada

Title: High speed data file transfer over dedicated lightpaths


With the computational, data, storage, and network requirements of High Energy Physics experiments which are coming online in a few years, it is expected that Grid Computing as it evolves, will play a significant role in addressing some of these. One such requirement, the bulk transfer of data over advanced high speed optical networks is necessary as such experiments are highly distributed with resources and participants from research laboratories and institutions spanning the globe.

Recently, the Canadian High Energy Physics community has participated in trials conducted across CA*net 4 and international research networks to stress the feasibility of high speed bulk data transfer over an end-to-end lightpath, a dedicated point-to-point optical link. The first of these trials involved transferring one Terabyte of Atlas Monte Carlo data from TRIUMF in Vancouver, Canada to CERN in Geneva. A transfer rate equivalent to transferring a CD of data every 8 seconds disk-to-disk was attained. This trial involved file-to-file transfers from a single host to single host. These rates were achieved using both TCP (bbftp) and UDP (tsunami).

A second trial which involved bidirectional block to block transfers between multiple disk arrays across parallel end-to-end lightpaths between Vancouver and StarLight and Ottawa and Starlight was able to consume 93% of available bandwidth capacity. The bandwidth consumption achieved exceeded 11 Gbit/s. This demonstrated the feasibility of fast disk replication using block I/O protocols over TCP/IP.

In this paper, we will present details of the bulk transfer trials, the end-to-end lightpath paradigm, and planned future activities.


PFLDnet 2003 is organized at CERN and sponsored by: