EEL 5937 Special Topics: Software-Defined Networking


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

University of Central Florida, Fall 2018


Contact Information - Course Information - Description - Prerequisites - Textbooks - Syllabus - Organization - Grading -  Schedule, Notes & Assignments - Acknowledgment


Contact Information

Instructor: Murat Yuksel


Phone: (407) 823-4181

Web page:

Office: HEC 317A

Office hours: 10-11:30am on Tuesday and Thursday, or by appointment


Course Information

Class Hour & Schedule

Registration Information

·       Credit Hours: 3

·       Lecture Hours: TR noon – 1:15pm

·       Classroom: ENG1 386A

·       Subject: EEL

·       Course Number: 5937

·       Course ID: 002994

·       Class Number: 91941



The Internet’s routing and switching speeds have been on super-linear increase to cope with the exponentially growing traffic demand. As the load on the Internet’s backbone increased, it has employed more sophisticated solutions which, in turn, caused associated labor and management costs to increase. To respond to the increasing complexity in the core, the networking community has moved to techniques with cheaper management costs via more virtualization and centralization of the protocol functions. This trend came with separation of control and data plane networking functions, a paradigm named as ‘software-defined networking’ (SDN). This course covers fundamentals of SDN, its basic design tradeoffs, potential applications, and relations with network function virtualization (NFV). It explores emerging applications of SDN in network management, traffic engineering, and software-defined exchanges (SDXes). The course offers hands-on exercises of SDN protocols such as OpenFlow and ONOS.



Fundamentals of software-defined networking (SDN). Control, data, and management plane separation. Northbound and southbound APIs. Network function virtualization (NFV), network orchestration, service chaining. SDN and NFV protocols and controllers such as OpenFlow, OpenDaylight, and Open Network Operating System (ONOS).




·      EEL 4781 Computer Communication Networks or equivalent, or consent of instructor.

·      Strong knowledge of Python, Java, C/C++ or a similar programming language.


·      Working knowledge of UNIX environments, scripting languages, and virtual machines.



There is no required textbook for this course. Since this is an advanced level class, the textbook is only the starting point for the majority of topics that we will cover. The lectures will cover ideas from a broad range of sources including other books, papers, and RFCs. In addition, the following books are recommended but not required:


·       [GBC] P. Goransson, C. Black, and T. Culver. (2017) Software Defined Networks: A Comprehensive Approach, 2nd Edition. Morgan Kaufmann. (ISBN: 978-0-12-804555-8)

·       [GN] K. Gray and T. D. Nadeau. (2016) Network Function Virtualization. Morgan Kaufmann. (ISBN: 978-0-12-802119-4)


Syllabus (Tentative)


  1. Networking Basics


  1. Switching Architecture


  1. SDN Architecture


  1. OpenFlow


  1. Network Function Virtualization (NFV)


  1. Emerging SDN Models


  1. SDN Ecosystem




Grading (Tentative)

Grading Policy





Home Quizzes


Grading Scale

90% - 100%

A-, A

80% - 89%

B-, B, B+

65% - 79%

C-, C, C+

55% - 64%


0% - 54%


Important Note: Re-grading requests can only be made within the first week after the graded assignments/tests are returned to the students.


Schedule (Tentative), Notes & Assignments

This is a tentative schedule. It is subject to readjustment depending on the time we actually spend in class covering the topics. Slides presented in class and assignments will be posted at the WebCourses.



Assignments & Notes

Aug 21, 23

Week 1: Introduction; Addressing & Forwarding


Aug 28, 30

Week 2: Routing

Lab 1

Sep 4, 6

Week 3: Why SDN?

GBC Chapters 1 and 2

Sep 11, 13

Week 4: SDN Architecture

GBC Chapters 3 and 4

Lab 2

Sep 18, 20

Week 5: SDN Architecture; OpenFlow

GBC Chapters 4 and 5

Home Quiz 1

Sep 25, 27

Week 6: OpenFlow

GBC Chapter 5

Lab 3

Home Quiz 2

Oct 2, 4

Week 7: OpenFlow; Emerging SDN Models

GBC Chapters 5 and 7

Lab 4

Home Quiz 3

Oct 9, 11

Week 8: Emerging SDN Models; SDN Applications

GBC Chapter 7 and 12

Project: Title & Abstract

Oct 16, 18

Week 9: SDN Applications

GBC Chapter 12

Lab 5

Home Quiz 4

Oct 23, 25

Week 10: SDN in the Datacenter

GBC Chapter 8

Oct 30, Nov 1

Week 11: NFV

GBC Chapter 10

Lab 6

Nov 6, 8

Week 12: Emerging SDN Models

GBC Chapter 12

Home Quiz 5

Project: Literature

Nov 13, 15

Week 13: SDN Ecosystem

GBC Chapters 11 and 13

Lab 7

Nov 20

Week 14: SDN Ecosystem

GBC Chapters 14

Nov 27, 29

Week 15: Project Presentations

Project: Final Report




The materials for this course are in part based upon the materials from a number of people/sources, including:

·      Official website for the Goransson, Black, & Culver text: Software Defined Networks: A Comprehensive Approach

·      Official website for the Gray & Nadeau text: Network Function Virtualization


Contact Information - Course Information - Description - Prerequisites - Textbooks - Syllabus - Organization - Grading -  Schedule, Notes & Assignments - Acknowledgment


Last updated on November 8, 2018