Published in Zheng, X., Veeraraghavan, M., Rao, N.S.V., Wu, Q., & Zhu, M. (2005). CHEETAH: circuit-switched high-speed end-to-end transport architecture testbed. IEEE Communications Magazine, 43(8), s11-s17. doi: 10.1109/MCOM.2005.1497551 ©2005 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. However, permission to reprint/republish this material for advertising or promotional purposes or for creating new collective works for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or to reuse any copyrighted component of this work in other works must be obtained from the IEEE. This material is presented to ensure timely dissemination of scholarly and technical work. Copyright and all rights therein are retained by authors or by other copyright holders. All persons copying this information are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. In most cases, these works may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.


We propose a circuit-switched high-speed end-to-end transport architecture (CHEETAH) as a networking solution to provide high-speed end-to-end circuit connectivity to end hosts on a dynamic call-by-call basis. Not only is it envisioned as a complementary service to the basic connectionless service provided by today’s Internet; it also relies on and leverages the presence of this service. Noting the dominance of Ethernet in LANs and SONET/SDH in WANs, CHEETAH circuits will consist of Ethernet segments at the ends and Ethernet-over-SONET segments in the wide area. In this article we explain the CHEETAH concept and describe a wide-area experimental network testbed we have deployed based on this concept. The network testbed currently extends between Raleigh, North Carolina, Atlanta, Georgia, and Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and uses off-the-shelf switches. We have created CHEETAH software to run on end hosts to enable automated use of this network by applications. Our first users of this network testbed and software will be the Terascale Supernova Initiative (TSI) project researchers, who plan to use this network for large file transfers and remote visualizations.