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Service Overlay Networks (SONs) can provide end-to-end quality of service guarantees in the Internet without requiring significant changes to the underlying network infrastructure. A SON is an application-layer network operated by a third-party Internet Service Provider (ISP) that owns a set of overlay nodes, residing in the underlying ISP domains, interconnected by overlay links. The deployment of a SON can be a capital-intensive investment, and hence its planning requires careful decisions, including the overlay nodes' placement, the capacity provisioning of overlay links as well as of access links that connect the end-users to the SON infrastructure.
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