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USENIX, The Advanced Computing Systems Association

1st USENIX Workshop on Hot Topics in Security

Pp. 63–68 of the Proceedings

Rethinking Hardware Support for Network Analysis and Intrusion Prevention

V. Paxson, International Computer Science Institute; K. Asanović, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; S. Dharmapurikar, Nuova Systems; J. Lockwood, Washington University;, R. Pang, Princeton University; R. Sommer and N. Weaver, International Computer Science Institute


The performance pressures on implementing effective network security monitoring are growing fiercely due to rising traffic rates, the need to perform much more sophisticated forms of analysis, the requirement for inline processing, and the collapse of Moore’s law for sequential processing. Given these growing pressures, we argue that it is time to fundamentally rethink the nature of using hardware to support network security analysis. Clearly, to do so we must leverage massively parallel computing elements, as only these can provide the necessary performance. The key, however, is to devise an abstraction of parallel processing that will allow us to expose the parallelism latent in semantically rich, stateful analysis algorithms; and that we can then further compile to hardware platforms with different capabilities.
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Last changed: 4 Aug. 2006 ch