Assessing the Impact of EEE Standard on Energy Consumed by Commercial Grade Network Switches

  • Joseph El Khoury
  • Eric Rondeau
  • Jean-Philippe Georges
  • Ah-Lian KorEmail author
Part of the Studies in Systems, Decision and Control book series (SSDC, volume 171)


This book chapter is adapted from El Khoury in Assessing the benefit of deploying EEE on commercial grade network switches, Unpublished PERCCOM Masters Dissertation, University of Lorraine, Nancy, France, 2017, [1] and it is closely linked to work published in Kharchenko et al. (eds.) in Green IT engineering: concepts, models, complex systems architectures. Studies in systems, decision and control, vol. 74. Springer, Cham, 2017, [2], Kharchenko et al. (eds.) in Green IT engineering: components, networks and systems implementation. Studies in systems, decision and control, vol. 105. Springer, Cham, 2017, [3]. Reducing power consumption of network equipment has been both driven by a need to reduce the ecological footprint of the cloud as well as the immense power costs of data centers. As data centers, core networks and consequently, the cloud, constantly increase in size, their power consumption should be mitigated. Ethernet, the most widely used access network still remains the biggest communication technology used in core networks and cloud infrastructures. The Energy-Efficient Ethernet or EEE standard introduced by IEEE in 2010, aims to reduce the power consumption of EEE ports by transitioning Ethernet ports into a low power mode when traffic is not present. As statistics show that the average utilization rate of ethernet links is 5% on desktops and 30% in data centers, the power saving potential of EEE could be immense. This research aims to assess the benefits of deploying EEE and create a power consumption model for network switches with and without EEE. Our measurements show that an EEE port runs at 12–15% of its total power when in low power mode. Therefore, the power savings can exceed 80% when there is no traffic. However, our measurements equally show that the power consumption of a single port represents less than 1% of the total power consumption of the switch. The base power consumed by the switch without any port is still significantly high and is not affected by EEE. Experiment results also show that the base power consumption of switches does not significantly increase with the size of the switches. Doubling the size of the switch between 24 and 48 ports increases power consumption by 35.39%. EEE has a greater effect on bigger switches, with a power (or energy) gain on the EEE-enabled 48-port switch compared to 2× EEE-enabled 24-port switch. On the other hand, it seems to be more energy-efficient to use 2 separate 24-port switches (NO EEE) than 2 separate 24-port switches (With EEE).


Power efficiency EEE Switch Port Power consumption Sleep Hibernate Network traffic Burst traffic Power consumption model 



This work was supported by the Erasmus Mundus PERCCOM programme [30].


  1. 1.
    El Khoury, J.: Assessing the benefit of deploying EEE on commercial grade network switches. Unpublished PERCCOM Masters Dissertation, University of Lorraine, Nancy, France (2017)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Kharchenko, V., Kondratenko, Y., Kacprzyk, J. (eds.).: Green IT Engineering: Concepts, Models, Complex Systems Architectures. Studies in Systems, Decision and Control, vol. 74. Springer, Cham (2017). Scholar
  3. 3.
    Kharchenko, V., Kondratenko, Y., Kacprzyk, J. (eds.). Green IT Engineering: Components, Networks and Systems Implementation. Studies in Systems, Decision and Control, vol. 105. Springer, Cham (2017). Scholar
  4. 4.
    Meng, J., Ren, F., Jiang, W., et al.: Modeling and understanding burst transmission algorithms for energy efficient ethernet. In: IEEE/ACM 21st International Symposium on IEEE on Quality of Service (IWQoS), Montreal, QC, Canada, 3–4 June 2013.
  5. 5.
    Brill, K.G. (2007). The Invisible Crisis in the Data Center: The Economic Meltdown of Moore’s Law, White Paper, Uptime Institute. URL: Accessed date 27 Oct 2017
  6. 6.
    Technavio. (2017). Global Data Center Construction Market 2017–2021. URL: Accessed date 27 Oct 2017
  7. 7.
    Armbsrust, M., et al.: Above the Clouds: A Berkeley View of Cloud Computing, Technical Report UCB/EECS-2009-28, EECS Department, U.C. Berkeley, Feb 2009. URL: Accessed date 27 Oct 2017
  8. 8.
    Seoane, I., Hernandez, J.A., Reviriego, P., Larrabeiti, D.: Energy-aware flow allocation algorithm for energy efficient ethernet networks. In: Proceedings of 19th International Conference on Software, Telecommunications and Computer Networks, SoftCOM, Split, Yugoslavia, 15–17 Sept 2011Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gunaratne, C., Christensen, K., Nordman, B., Suen, S.: Reducing the energy consumption of ethernet with adaptive link rate (ALR). IEEE Trans. Comput. 57(4), 448–461 (2008). Scholar
  10. 10.
    IEEE. (2010). IEEE P802.3az Energy Efficient Ethernet Task Force. URL: Accessed date 27 Oct 2017
  11. 11.
    Christensen, K., et al.: IEEE 802.3az: the road to energy efficient ethernet. IEEE Commun. Mag. 48(11), 50–56 (2010). Scholar
  12. 12.
    Marsan, M.A., et al.: A simple analytical model for energy efficient ethernet. IEEE Commun. Lett. 15(7), 773–775 (2011). Scholar
  13. 13.
    Herreria-Alonso, S., Rodrıguez-Perez, M., Fernandez-Veiga, M., Lopez-Garcıa, C.: Optimal configuration of energy-efficient ethernet. Elsevier Comput. Netw. 56(10), 2456–2467 (2012). Scholar
  14. 14.
    Reviriego, P., et al.: Burst transmission for energy-efficient ethernet. IEEE Internet Comput. 14(4), 50–57 (2010).
  15. 15.
    Reviriego, P., et al.: An energy consumption model for energy efficient ethernet switches. In: Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on High Performance Computing and Simulation (HPCS), Madrid, Spain, 2–6 July 2012. 0.1109/HPCSim.2012.6266897Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Paillassa, B., et al.: Performance evaluation of energy efficient policies for ethernet switches. In: Proceedings of IEEE International Wireless Communications and Mobile Computing Conference (IWCMC), Sardinia, Italy, 1–5 July 2013.
  17. 17.
    Popescu, I., et al.: Application-centric energy-efficient ethernet with quality of service support. Electron. Lett. 51(15), 1165–1167 (2015). Scholar
  18. 18.
    Saravanan, K.P., Carpenter, P.M., Ramirez, A.: Power/performance evaluation of energy efficient ethernet (EEE) for high performance computing. In: IEEE International Symposium on Performance Analysis of Systems and Software (ISPASS), Austin, Texas, USA, 21–23 Apr 2013Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Lee, S., Chen, A.: Design and analysis of a novel energy efficient ethernet passive optical network. In: Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Networks (ICN), Menuires, France, 11–16 Apr 2010.
  20. 20.
    Kubo, R., et al.: Study and demonstration of sleep and adaptive link rate control mechanisms for energy efficient 10G-EPON. J. Opt. Commun. Netw. 2(9), 716–729 (2010). Scholar
  21. 21.
    Reviriego, P., et al.: Study of the potential energy savings in ethernet by combining energy efficient ethernet and adaptive link rate. Trans. Emerg. Telecommun. Technol. 23(3), 227–233 (2012). Scholar
  22. 22.
    Jin, S., Fan, R., Yue, W.: A hybrid energy saving strategy with LPI and ALR for energy-efficient ethernet. In: Proceedings of IEEE 2nd International Conference on Computer Science and Network Technology, (ICCSNT), Changchun, China, 29–31 Dec 2012.
  23. 23.
    Rodríguez-Pérez, M., et al.: Optimum traffic allocation in bundled energy-efficient ethernet links. IEEE Syst. J. (99) (2015). Scholar
  24. 24.
    Herreria-Alonso, S., et al.: Optimizing dual-mode EEE interfaces: deep-sleep is healthy. IEEE Trans. Commun. 65(8).
  25. 25.
    Larrabeiti, D., et al.: Towards an energy efficient 10 Gb/s optical ethernet: performance analysis and viability. Opt. Switching Netw. 8(3), 131–138 (2011). Scholar
  26. 26.
    Mostowfi, M., Christensen, K.: Saving energy in LAN switches: new methods of packet coalescing for energy efficient ethernet. In: Proceedings of IEEE IGCC Orlando, USA, 25–28 July 2011.
  27. 27.
    Aksić, M., Bjelica, M.: Packet coalescing strategies for energy-efficient ethernet. Electron. Lett. 50(7), 521–523 (2014). Scholar
  28. 28.
    Chakadkit, T., Jakllari, G., Paillassa, B.: Augmenting the energy-saving impact of IEEE 802.3 az via the control plane. In: Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Communication Workshop, (ICCW), London, UK, 8–12 June 2015.
  29. 29.
    Hossain, M., Rondeau, E., Georges, J.-P., Bastogne, T.: Modeling the power consumption of ethernet switch. In: International SEEDS Conference 2015: Sustainable Ecological Engineering Design for Society, Leeds, UK, 17–18 Sept 2015Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Klimova, A., Rondeau, E., Andersson, K., Porras, J., Rybin, A.V., Zaslavsky, A.: An international master’s program in green ICT as a contribution to sustainable development. J. Cleaner Prod. 135, 223–239 (2016). Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph El Khoury
    • 1
  • Eric Rondeau
    • 1
  • Jean-Philippe Georges
    • 1
  • Ah-Lian Kor
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.CRAN, Université de LorraineNancyFrance
  2. 2.School of ComputingCreative Technologies, and Engineering, Leeds Beckett UniversityLeedsUK

Personalised recommendations