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While cloud computing providers offer guaranteed allocations for resources such as CPU and memory, they do not offer any guarantees for network resources. The lack of network guarantees prevents tenants from predicting lower bounds on the performance of their applications. The research community has recognized this limitation but, unfortunately, prior solutions have significant limitations: either they are inefficient, because they are not work-conserving, or they are impractical, because they require expensive switch support or congestion-free network cores. In this paper, the authors propose ElasticSwitch, an efficient and practical approach for providing bandwidth guarantees. ElasticSwitch is efficient because it utilizes the spare bandwidth from unreserved capacity or underutilized reservations.
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