Are virtualized overlay networks too much of a good thing?

TitleAre virtualized overlay networks too much of a good thing?
Publication TypeJournal Articles
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsKeleher P, Bhattacharjee B, Silaghi B
JournalPeer-to-Peer Systems
Pagination225 - 231
Date Published2002///

The majority of recent high-profile work in peer-to-peer networks has approached the problem of location by abstracting over object lookup services. Namespace virtualization in the overlay layer provides load balance and provable bounds on latency at low costs.We contend that namespace virtualization comes at a significant cost for applications that naturally describe their data sets in a hierarchical manner. Opportunities for enhancing browsing, prefetching and efficient attribute-based searches are lost. A hierarchy exposes relationships between items near to each other in the topology; virtualization of the namespace discards this information even if present at client, higherlevel protocols.
We advocate encoding application hierarchies directly into the structure of the overlay network, and revisit this argument through a newly proposed distributed directory service.