Forgive me for asking this question.

I am trying to see how SDN paradigm can be applied to highly dynamic networks, i.e., vehicular networks. If we consider vehicles as edges in a network, (i.e., the edge is moving itself), then how can we report a vehicular geographical position back to a localized SDN controller or a centralized SDN controller?

Even if we store the vehicle's geographical location in a flowtable, wouldn't it add to a significant SDN Management Overhead? Also, what would happen if one of the localized SDN controllers fails and the centralized SDN controller would loose the globalized view of the network ... is there any alternate arrangement where the disconnected networks relies temporarily?

  • 1
    Highly dynamic networks are problematic, with or without SDN.
    – Ron Trunk
    Commented May 17, 2017 at 14:27
  • HTML5 Geolocation API, for example, is a very accessible API for grabbing endpoint/client location. I'm sure that would be trivial in Java, for example, as well. My question back is : why do you believe you need a new network paradigm to achieve client geo tracking? Commented Jun 25, 2017 at 0:26
  • Did any answer help you? If so, you should accept the answer so that the question doesn't keep popping up forever, looking for an answer. Alternatively, you can provide and accept your own answer.
    – Ron Maupin
    Commented Feb 19, 2018 at 19:48

1 Answer 1


The vehicles in this network would be hosts in an actual SDN. Since the openFlow kind of SDN switches do not store the state information, there exists no way you can store geographical(read state) information of the vehicles(host) in the forwarding devices.

However, there is a potential to store the location information within the controller. Controllers like ODL are getting more and more stateful. The centralized repo can easily handle dynamically changing location.

Your second question is too generic and is not directly related with the usecase you brought up. The problem of a dying controller is major issue in the SDN networks. To solve that, there are multiple topologies(linear, tree, sliced) of the distributed control plane available with different merits as per the usecase.

Nonetheless, that's an interesting use case of SDN.

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