A survey on Machine Learning Techniques for Routing Optimization in SDN
In conventional networks, there was a tight bond between the control plane and the data plane. The introduction of Software-Defined Networking (SDN) separated these planes, and provided additional features and tools to solve some of the problems of traditional network (i.e., latency, consistency, efficiency). SDN is a flexible networking paradigm that boosts network control, programmability and automation. It proffers many benefits in many areas, including routing. More specifically, for
... ntly organizing, managing and optimizing routing in networks, some intelligence is required, and SDN offers the possibility to easily integrate it. To this purpose, many researchers implemented different machine learning (ML) techniques to enhance SDN routing applications. This article surveys the use of ML techniques for routing optimization in SDN based on three core categories (i.e. supervised learning, unsupervised learning, and reinforcement learning). The main contributions of this survey are threefold. Firstly, it presents detailed summary tables related to these studies and their comparison is also discussed, including a summary of the best works according to our analysis. Secondly, it summarizes the main findings, best works and missing aspects, and it includes a quick guideline to choose the best ML technique in this field (based on available resources and objectives). Finally, it provides specific future research directions divided into six sections to conclude the survey. Our conclusion is that there is a huge trend to use intelligence-based routing in programmable networks, particularly during the last three years, but a lot of effort is still required to achieve comprehensive comparisons and synergies of approaches, meaningful evaluations based on open datasets and topologies, and detailed practical implementations (following recent standards) that could be adopted by industry. In summary, future efforts should be focused on reproducible research rather than on new isolated ideas. Otherwise, most of these applications will be barely implemented in practice.