Service Prototyping Lab (SPLab)

The Service Prototyping Lab (SPLab) performs scientific research and development to rapidly and easily bring applications into the cloud while maintaining quality standards for high availability, high resilience, and other predictable characteristics.

selogo-splab-croppedSPLab advances the state of the art in Service Prototyping. From applied research on novel service architectures to applied research on migrating software to the cloud through suitable services, SPLab is available for innovative technical projects. Headed by Josef Spillner, the lab hosts two research themes on Pervasive Services and Service-based Applications which in turn contain six research initiatives. SPLab operates in conjunction with the ICCLab to realise complex cloud application systems.

The research initiatives for the themes of Pervasive Services and Service-based Applications are:

SPLab has been founded in August 2015 and is gradually ramping up its initiatives. Watch this space and the blog front page to find software, tutorials and articles from our research. Download the SPLab brochure to get a one-page description of research initiatives and outputs.

If you are interested in our work, subscribe to the joint ICCLab/SPLab blog feed, check our open source software on SPLab at Github, our peer-reviewed publications, or just follow SPLab on Twitter. We also run two public mailing lists: cloud-announce for academic community announcements of conferences, vacancies and so forth, and splab for updates on what happens in the Service Prototyping Lab.

Amongst our lab results and its impact, we can point to the following recent highlights.

  • Education
    • Internet Service Prototyping elective module (ISPROT-EN) for IT bachelor students
  • Software
    • Multi-Cloud Simulation + Emulation framework (MC-EMU)
  • Publications
    • Experimental Evaluation of the Cloud-Native Application Design, CloudAM’15
    • Stealth Databases: Ensuring User-Controlled Queries in Untrusted Cloud Environments, IEEE/ACM UCC’15
  • Community
    • co-chairs of ICWE’16, UCC’16, HPCS’16

Our expertise includes: Experimental comparison of stacks and frameworks; provication and emulation of live conditions, e.g. popularity spikes, failures and malicious interruptions; decomposition of existing applications; cloud-aware designs for new applications; connectivity between services and devices; multi-cloud applications; continuous development and deployment of bundled microservices.

Contact Josef Spillner [josef.spillner / /] regarding any SPLab matters. Further contact details and legal blurbs for the focus area Service Engineering are here.

Recent blog posts:

Walk-through: Importing virtual machine images into EC2

push2cloud – Deploy complex microservice applications in style

Calls for contributions to UCC 2016

Announcing the Service Prototyping Lab

Since the inception of the InIT Cloud Computing Lab (ICCLab) in 2012, cloud computing has become a mainstream technology in Switzerland and everywhere else. There is a continued and in fact increasing industry need for innovating in cloud stacks, platforms, networking, energy efficiency and overall infrastructure.

But with all the platforms now deployed, more businesses are making use of them due to their inherent advantages such as on-demand provisioning / rightsizing, transparent pay-per-use pricing models, and flexible virtual infrastructure packages. Applications and services are migrated to such platforms or even engineered specifically for these platforms. Consequently, we have received the feedback from the business side and acknowledge it with an extension of our applied research activities. In order to frame our involvement prominently, we hereby announce the opening of the SPLab in addition to the ICCLab. Continue reading

InIT Cloud Computing Lab (ICCLab)

ICCLab is an applied research lab which is pushing the boundaries in Cloud Computing research and education. The lab is led by Prof-Dr. Thomas Michael Bohnert and it operates within the Service Engineering group of ZHAW’s InIT (Institute of Applied Information Technology) in conjunction with the SPLab. It comprises of a diverse mix with different backgrounds, levels of experience and nationalities. The team is an active group which is very engaged within the Swiss and EU research arenas and also has significant bilateral activities with local Swiss companies.


Join the ICCLab community and follow ICCLab on Twitter.

Contact details for the lab are here.

CFP: Future Generation Computer Systems

Special Issue on Cloud Incident Management and Disaster Recovery


Submission deadline: October 30th, 2015
Notification of acceptance: July 30th, 2016
Final version due: August 30th, 2016
Expected publishing date: October 30th, 2016 Continue reading

ACeN Begins!

Recently the ICCLab, ZHAW acquired a KTI project, ACeN – Apache CloudStack for NFV. Cloudstack is one of the front running Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platforms for cloud environment. Leveraging Network-function virtualization (NFV) as the concept of replacing dedicated network hardware with a software providing the same network functions, increases network capabilities such as service availability in the cloud. This project has now commenced and the interaction between partners Citrix, Exoscale and ZHAW. Everyone is highly engaged already and from our  perspective we’re very excited to about this work.

The ACeN project will deliver services and prototypes based on the NFV standard and Apache CloudStack. A novel hybrid load-balancing service (HLBS) will be created and and key NFV demonstrators will be prototyped. It is hybrid as it combines IP address management and load balancing into one service/function. All will follow a common architectural approach, on common technology. This work will leverage and can enable access to a market worth up to $2.4 Billion by 2018.

The majority of outputs from the project will be made open source (under ASL 2.0), including the hybrid load balancing service. Much of the work in ACeN is exploiting the research work carried out in Mobile Cloud Networking and also the Hurtle orchestration framework.

From our lab’s perspective, this project demonstrates concretely our research approach of bringing foundational research and open source impact through an innovation transfer process to Swiss SMEs.

Stay tuned for more updates!


Experimental evaluation of post-copy live migration in OpenStack using 10Gb/s interfaces

Up to now, we have published several blog posts focusing on the live migration performance in our experimental Openstack deployment – performance analysis of post-copy live migration in Openstack and an analysis of the performance of live migration in Openstack. While we analyzed the live migration behaviour using different live migration algorithms (read our previous blog posts regarding pre-copy and post-copy (hybrid) live migration performance) we observed that both live migration algorithms can easily saturate our 1Gb/s infrastructure and that is not fast enough, not for us! Fortunately, our friends Robayet Nasim and Prof. Andreas Kassler from Karlstad University, Sweden also like their live migrations as fast and reliable as possible, so they kindly offered their 10 Gb/s infrastructure for further performance analysis. Since this topic is very much in line with the objectives of the COST ACROSS action which both we (ICCLab!) and Karlstad are participants of,  this analysis  was carried out under a 2-week short term scientific mission (STSM) within this action.
This blog post presents a short wrap-up of the results obtained focusing on the evaluation of post-copy live migration in OpenStack using 10Gb/s interfaces and comparing them with the performance of the 1Gb/s setup. The full STSM report can be found here. Continue reading

Denis Baudinot

Foto am 12.08.15 um 10.13

Denis is an assistant in the SDN Initiative since January 2015. His field of functions includes developing and maintaining SDN applications and test environments.

Before joining the ICCLab he worked as a software developer in Zürich. He is currently part time studying Information Technology at the ZHAW. His interests include programming languages, web and networking technologies.

GPU support in the cloud

It is well recognized that GPUs can greatly outperform standard CPUs for certain types of work – typically those which can be decomposed into many basic computations which can be parallelized; matrix operations are the classical example. However, GPUs have evolved primarily in the context of the quite independent video subsystem and even there, the key driver has been support for advanced graphics and gaming. Consequently, they have not been architected to support diverse applications within the cloud. In this blog post we comment on the state of the art regarding GPU support in the cloud.

Continue reading

Luca Del Vecchio

avatar_lucaLuca is an intern at ZHAW InIT Cloud Computing Lab. He joined the team in August 2015. His internship is the last step of his education to become a developer.

Luca is doing his schooling from IMS (Informatikmittelschule) at KSH in Zurich. The curriculum requires three years of scholar education and one year of an internship to collect experience and learn new and interesting Cloud computing topics. At the ICCLab Luca will be working with the Software Defined Networking team.

Özgür Özsu

pictureÖzgür is an intern who joined the team of the ZHAW InIT Cloud Computing Lab in August 2015.

After the high school he went to the “Informatikmittelschule” (a mix of IT and economics)
of Winterthur at the KBW to start his application developer apprenticeship.

He is currently finishing his 4-year long apprenticeship with an final internship in the
last year at the ZHAW to earn experience in developing and learn new things in an interesting environment.