The path towards a cloud-aware mobile network protocol stack
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We are currently observing the softwarization of communication networks, where network functions are translated from monolithic pieces of equipment to programs running over a shared pool of computational, storage, and communication resources. While it is clear that almost any softwarization improves flexibility (e.g., the ability to instantiate more servers to cope with increasing traffic demand), in this paper we advocate for a complete re-design of the communications protocol stack, instead of a mere translation of hardware functions into software. We discuss two drivers for this cloud-aware re- design: (i) relaxing the tight interactions between functions, and (ii) supporting a graceful degradation of the service when resources become scarce. The potential benefits of this re-design are illustrated with the numerical evaluation of one use case.