ECE6110 - CAD For Computer Networks


Dr. George F. Riley
Office: Klaus 3360
Alternate Office: Van Lear 204
Office hours: Monday/Wednesday 12-2pm, Klaus 3360, other times by email

Course Summary

ECE6110 is a graduate course which introduces students to the concepts used in simulations of computer networks. We will cover a wide range of issues in computer network simulation, and try to understand both how to create simulations and how to interpret results. We use a number of network simulation tools, including ns3, OpNet, and/or GTNetS, for out of class projects. At the completion of the semester, students will have a detailed understanding of computer network simulation and how to apply it networking research.

Teaching Philosophy

Teaching is interactive! Students are strongly encouraged to participate in class and offer opinions on the issues being discussed. I encourage (and expect) you to participate actively in the learning process. In particular, I welcome your comments and questions as we cover material in class. One-way lectures quickly becoming boring, both for you and for me. Also, I have found that students often learn more from other students comments than from the instructor! By asking lots of questions, your understanding of the material will be deepened significantly, and the course will be much more fun! From time to time there will be readings for a class session; these will be posted on the class web page below in a downloadable format. Students are expected to download and read the assigned readings before class.

Computing Resources

We have a newly installed linux-based computing cluster known as the Jinx cluster. This platform is the recommended platform for completing all of theThis platform is the recommended platform for completing all of the class projects, although you are free to use your personal laptops or desktops, as long as they have linux and appropriate libraries. The link above describes the jinx cluster and how to access it.


There is no textbook for this class. We will use research papers as required for our reading and discussion.

Course Outline

The list of topics to be covered is tentative, but expected to include the following:

Network Simulation Basics

  • Creating topologies
  • Defining data flows
  • Defining queuing disciplines
  • Trace file analysis methods
  • Using network animation

    Introduction to Simulation

  • Discrete Event Simulation (DES)
  • Simulating Networks with DES
  • Modeling Network Elements
  • Levels of abstratction

    Parallel and Distributed Simulation

  • Conservative vs. Optimistic Simulation Methods
  • Time Management in Conservative Simulation
  • Event Distribution Methods

    Overview of Network Simulation Tools

  • GTNetS
  • ns3
  • Opnet
  • ns2
  • SSF
  • GloMoSim

    Using Parallel/Distributed NS3

  • Defining the topology
  • Initiating multi-process simulations

    Measuring Network Performance via Simulation

  • Performance Metrics
  • Goodput, Throughput, Loss, Delay, Jitter, etc.
  • Factors Affecting Performance
  • Predicting Affect of Changes

    The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)

  • Modeling TCP
  • Existing TCP Variations
  • Factors Affecting TCP Performance
  • New TCP variations
  • Congestion Avoidance in TCP
  • Using TCP over satellite links
  • Using simulation to measure TCP performance


  • Multicast group management
  • Source based trees vs. Core based trees
  • Modeling multicast in network simulations
  • Measuring multicast routing protocol overhead

    Simulating Routing Prototocols

  • Routing in Network Simulators
  • Modeling EIGRP and BGP

    Active Queue Management (AQM) and queueing Disciplines

  • DropTail, RED, Priority, WFQ, SCFQ, others
  • Implementation of active queues in network simulators
  • Measuring the affect of AQM

    Streaming Video/Audio Models

  • Creating a MPEG video model
  • Measuring MPEG performance
  • Performance tradeoffs in streaming applications

    Modeling Web Browsing

  • Using request/response distribution models
  • Using page distribution models
  • Measuring HTTP Performance

    Getting Help

    There will be one teaching assistant for this course. He will do all grading of out of class projects and should be your first point of contact when you have questions about assignments or grading.
  • Teaching Assistant: Daniel Lertpratchya
  • Office hours: Tuesdays 10:00 - 1:00, Fridays 10:00 - 1:00.


    Project 1 10%
    Project 2 10%
    Project 3 20%
    Midterm 20%
    Final Project 30%
    Class Participation 10%
    Total 100%


      Day    Month     Date     Description     Handout     Due Date  
    MonJan6   Introduction to Network Simulation 

    WedJan8   Download ns-3 

      ns-3 tutorial 
    MonJan13   TCP Congestion Avoidance Paper    VanJacobsonCongestionAvoidance.pdf 
    WedJan15   Project 1 assigned    P1.pdf 

      RFC 2581, TCP Congestion Control    rfc2581.txt 
    MonJan20   No Class School Holiday (MLK Day) 

    WedJan22   TCP Variations    TCPflavors.pdf 
    MonJan27   TCP Variations Continued 

    WedJan29   SNOW DAY NO CLASS 

      Comparison of Red vs DropTail queuing    P2.pdf 
    MonFeb3   Random Early Detection Queuing    Floyd-Red.pdf 
    WedFeb5   Tuning RED for Web Traffic    TuningRedLong.pdf 
    MonFeb10   Bruce Mah HTTP Study    MahHttp.pdf 
    WedFeb12   SNOW DAY NO CLASS 

    MonFeb17   NIx-Vector Routing    RileyStatelessRouting.pdf 

      Effect of Ethernet Detail    EthernetDetail.pdf 
    WedFeb19   NO Class Instructor Out of Town 

    MonFeb24   Difficuties Simulating the Internet    FloydDifficultiesSimulatingInternet.pdf 

      Can We Simulate the Internet?    RileySimulatingInternet.pdf 

      Modeling Internet Worms    Riley-Sharif-Worms.pdf 
    WedFeb26   Ethernet Detail Revisited    Ethernet-Hafez.pdf 

      Worm Containment    Hafez-Containment.pdf 
    MonMar3   Using ns3 wireless models 

    WedMar5   Midterm Exam 

    MonMar10   Experimental Evaluation of Wireless Assumptions    experimental_wireless.pdf 
    MonMar10   Wireless Throughput    Lab 3 assigned    Mar 30 2014 
    WedMar12   Wireless Simulator Accuracy    ManetSimulatorAccuracy.pdf 

      Comparing Wireless Simulators    DheerajWirelessComparison.pdf 
    MonMar17   No Class Spring Break 

    WedMar19   No Class Spring Break 

    MonMar24   NS3 Path Loss Models    ns3PathLoss.pdf 

      Final Projects Posted    finalproj.pdf 
    WedMar26   Measurement Based Physical Layer Modeling    PhysicalModel.pdf 
    MonMar31   MIT Roofnet Paper    WirelessMeasurements.pdf 

      Detailed modeling of OFDM    Detailed-OFDM-Modeling-Bagrodia.pdf 

      Effect of Details on Wireless    WirelessDetail.pdf 
    WedApr2   The bursty links model    DanielBurstyLinks.pdf 

      More Efficient Wireless Simulation    WirelessLamp.pdf 

      Large Scale Wireless Simulations    Xin-Zhang-Large-Scale-Wireless.pdf 
    MonApr7   Nicol Anechoic Chamber Experiments    NicolAnechoicChamber.pdf 

      Wide Area Internet Measurements    SimpsonNeti.pdf 

      Packet Reordering in the Internet    Partridge-PacketReordering.pdf 
    WedApr9   Fluid Modeling-Jaafar    Riley-Jaafar-Fluid.pdf 

      Wardi Fluid Models    wodes02.pdf 

      Fluid Modeling-Kiddle    p143-kiddle.pdf 

      Distributed Simulation with ns-3    DistNS3.pdf 
    MonApr14   Using Ghosts in Distributed Simulations ghosts.pdf 


    MonApr21   Final Project Presentations 

    WedApr23   Final Project Presentations 

    MonApr28   FINAL EXAM PERIOD 11:30AM - 2:20PM 

    Contact Information:
    School of Electrical and Computer Computing
    Georgia Institute of Technology
    Atlanta, GA 30332-0250

    Last Modified: Aug 18, 2008