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Applied Sciences ; 11(11):5245, 2021.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-1731909


Service Function Chaining (SFC) is an emerging paradigm aiming to provide flexible service deployment, lifecycle management, and scaling in a micro-service architecture. SFC is defined as a logically connected list of ordered Service Functions (SFs) that require high availability to maintain user experience. The SFC protection mechanism is one way to ensure high availability, and it is achieved by proactively deploying backup SFs and installing backup paths in the network. Recent studies focused on ensuring the availability of backup SFs, but overlooked SFC unavailability due to network failures. This paper extends our previous work to propose a Hybrid Protection mechanism for SFC (HP-SFC) that divides SFC into segments and combines the merits of local and global failure recovery approaches to define an installation policy for backup paths. A novel labeling technique labels SFs instead of SFC, and they are stacked as per the order of SFs in a particular SFC before being inserted into a packet header for traffic steering through segment routing. The emulation results showed that HP-SFC recovered SFC from failure within 20–25 ms depending on the topology and reduced backup paths’ flow entries by at least 8.9% and 64.5% at most. Moreover, the results confirmed that the segmentation approach made HP-SFC less susceptible to changes in network topology than other protection schemes.