Analysis and Evaluation of OpenFlow Message Usage for Security Applications

  • Sebastian SeeberEmail author
  • Gabi Dreo Rodosek
  • Gaëtan Hurel
  • Rémi Badonnel
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9701)


With the advances in cloud computing and virtualization technologies, Software-Defined Networking (SDN) has become a fertile ground for building network applications regarding management and security using the OpenFlow protocol giving access to the forwarding plane. This paper presents an analysis and evaluation of OpenFlow message usage for supporting network security applications. After describing the considered security attacks, we present mitigation and defence strategies that are currently used in SDN environments to tackle them. We then analyze the dependencies of these mechanisms to OpenFlow messages that support their instantiation. Finally, we conduct series of experiments on software and hardware OpenFlow switches in order to validate our analysis and quantify the limits of current security mechanisms with different OpenFlow implementations.



The authors wish to thank the member of the Chair for Communication Systems and Internet Services at the Universität der Bundeswehr München, headed by Prof. Dr. Gabi Dreo Rodosek, for helpful discussions and valuable comments for this paper. This work was partly funded by FLAMINGO, a Network of Excellence project (ICT-318488) supported by the European Commission under its Seventh Framework Programme.


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sebastian Seeber
    • 1
    Email author
  • Gabi Dreo Rodosek
    • 1
  • Gaëtan Hurel
    • 2
  • Rémi Badonnel
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversität der Bundeswehr MünchenNeubibergGermany
  2. 2.Inria Nancy Grand-EstUniversité de LorraineVillers-les-nancyFrance

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