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The usage of test-beds is considered a key tool for exploring the development of new protocols and network architectures in the area of network research. Test-beds, together with simulations, are the basic tool set of network researchers to drive research, but often it is impossible to get feedback from real deployments and their respective data traffic. Today's major test-bed facilities, e.g., VINI and PlanetLab, aim at emulating the behavior of large-scale networks, but they are still several orders of magnitude smaller than the deployed operational network infrastructure. The authors argue that it is time to extend network research beyond theoretical and test-bed approaches towards a dynamic, peer-to-peer based test-bed environment, similar to the approach taken by seti-home and BOINC.
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