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A significant fraction of network events (such as topology or route changes) and the resulting performance degradation stem from premeditated network management and operational tasks. This paper introduces a general class of Graceful Network Operation (GNO) problems, where the goal is to discover the optimal sequence of operations that progressively transition the network from its initial to a desired final state while minimizing the overall performance disruption. The authors investigate two specific GNO problems: Link Weight Reassignment Scheduling (LWRS) studies the optimal ordering of link weight updates to migrate from an existing to a new link weight assignment, and Link Maintenance Scheduling (LMS) looks at how to schedule link deactivations and subsequent reactivations for maintenance purposes. LWRS and LMS are both combinatorial optimization problems.
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