The semester-long project is an open-ended systems research project. Project topics are of your choice but should be related to cloud computing and data centers. Projects should be done in groups of two include a systems building component.

Final Project Report

Papers must be written in LaTeX. Text should be formatted in two columns on 8.5-inch by 11-inch paper using 10 point fonts on 12 point (single-spaced) leading, and 1-inch margins. You should strongly consider using some type of version control software (e.g., Subversion or Git) for your project and the paper you write describing it.

Project Proposal

Describe the problem you plan to solve, why it is novel/unique, what the challenges are to solve the problem Provide detailed plan and milestones on the project

Midterm Project Report

Describe the detailed design for your project and what you have implemented/evaluated Describe the remaining challenges, how you would address them, and your plan for the remaining time

Final Project Report

The same requirement as a workshop paper. No longer than 6 pages, EXCLUDING references.


If you need access to one or two computers for testing your system, please contact us. For larger-scale tests, you should try out one of the following testbeds:


DeterLab is a network emulation environment at ISI. It provides racks of machines and programmable switches that can be configured to form mostly-arbitrary network topologies, with controllable delay and loss between nodes. It's a great way to test real programs in repeatable conditions or at scales that you can't get on your own.

If you wish to use Emulab for your project, you should join our class deterlab project.


PlanetLab is a large-scale, distributed collection of machines that can be used for experiments and measurements. It has around 600 nodes scattered over about 350 sites. The machines run something linux-ish that you can login to and run programs, and there exist a variety of utilities for automatically distributing software to the nodes, running programs, and so on.

You must sign up to use a PlanetLab account. Please only sign up if you're going to use the account, since it imposes some management overhead on people not involved with the course.

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