Mobile Edge Computing Platform Deployment in 4G LTE Networks: A Middlebox Approach


Chi-Yu Li, Hsueh-Yang Liu, Po-Hao Huang, and Hsu-Tung Chien, National Chiao Tung University; Guan-Hua Tu, Michigan State University; Pei-Yuan Hong and Ying-Dar Lin, National Chiao Tung University


Low-latency demands for cellular networks have attracted much attention. Mobile edge computing (MEC), which deploys a cloud computing platform at the edge closer to mobile users, has been introduced as an enabler of low-latency performance in 4G and 5G networks. In this paper, we propose an MEC platform deployment solution in 4G LTE networks using a middlebox approach. It is standard-compliant and transparent to existing cellular network components, so they need not be modified. The MEC middlebox sits on the S1 interface, which connects an LTE base station to its core network, and does traffic filtering, manipulation and forwarding. It enables the MEC service for mobile users by hosting application servers. Such middlebox approach can save deployment cost and be easy to install. It is different from other studies that require modifications on base stations or/and core networks. We have confirmed its viability through a prototype based on the OpenAirInterface cellular platform.

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@inproceedings {216765,
author = {Chi-Yu Li and Hsueh-Yang Liu and Po-Hao Huang and Hsu-Tung Chien and Guan-Hua Tu and Pei-Yuan Hong and Ying-Dar Lin},
title = {Mobile Edge Computing Platform Deployment in 4G {LTE} Networks: A Middlebox Approach},
booktitle = {USENIX Workshop on Hot Topics in Edge Computing (HotEdge 18)},
year = {2018},
address = {Boston, MA},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = jul