University of Oulu

Shu, Z., Feng, H., Taleb, T., & Zhang, Z. (2023). A novel combinatorial multi-armed bandit game to identify online the changing top-K flows in software-defined networks. In Computer Networks (Vol. 230, p. 109783). Elsevier BV.

A novel combinatorial multi-armed bandit game to identify online the changing top-K flows in software-defined networks

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Author: Shu, Zhaogang1; Feng, Haoxian1; Taleb, Tarik2;
Organizations: 1Computer and Information College, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fuzhou, China
2Center of Wireless Communications, The University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Elsevier, 2023
Publish Date: 2023-08-11


Identifying the top-K flows that require much more bandwidth resources in a large-scale Software-Defined Network (SDN) is essential for many network management tasks, such as load balancing, anomaly detection, and traffic engineering. However, identifying such top-K flows is not trivial, not only because of the fluctuations in flow bandwidth requirements but also because of the combinatorial explosion of problem instance sizes. In this paper, we weaken the tradeoff between exploration and exploitation and innovatively define the online top-K flows identification problem as identifying the top-K arms in a Combinatorial Multi-Armed Bandit (CMAB) model. Then, we propose a general greedy selection mechanism with some identification strategies that focus on temporal variations in the rewards. Extensive simulation experiments based on real traffic data are conducted to evaluate the performance of different strategies. In addition, the results of numerical simulations demonstrate that our proposed greedy selection mechanism significantly outperforms existing counterparts on top-K arms identification.

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Series: Computer networks. The international journal of computer and telecommunications networking
ISSN: 1389-1286
ISSN-E: 1872-7069
ISSN-L: 1389-1286
Volume: 230
Article number: 109783
DOI: 10.1016/j.comnet.2023.109783
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 213 Electronic, automation and communications engineering, electronics
Funding: This research work was supported in part by the Fujian Province Natural Science Foundation of China under Agreement 2020J01574 and Industry-university-research Innovation Fund of China under Agreement 2021FNA05003. This research work was also conducted in ICTFICIAL OY and is partially supported by the European Union’s Horizon Europe program for Research and Innovation through the aerOS project under Grant No. 101069732. It was also partially supported by the Academy of Finland 6Genesis project under Grant No. 318927 and the Academy of Finland IDEA-MILL project under Grant No. 352428.
Academy of Finland Grant Number: 318927
Detailed Information: 318927 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
352428 (Academy of Finland Funding decision)
Copyright information: © 2023 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (