CS6460: Datacenter Networks and Services

Spring 2011, Prof. Sirer


  • Feb 3: No class today.
  • Jan 25: Here are some reviews from a previous offering of the peer-to-peer course: from early on in the course, and from later on in the course. You will notice that the later reviews are uniformly better in every respect. I have decided to explicitly not reveal what the reviewed papers are about -- see if you can figure that out from the reviews themselves.
  • Jan 25: First set of readings is on the syllabus, link to the left.
  • Jan 25: Welcome to the course.
Older announcements


CS6460 focuses on datacenter networks and services. The emerging demand for web services and cloud computing have created need for large scale data centers. The hardware and software infrastructure for datacenters critically determines the functionality, performance, cost and failure tolerance of applications running on that datacenter. This course will examine design alternatives for both the hardware (networking) infrastructure, and the software infrastructure for datacenters.

While there are no official prerequisites for the course, a high level of familiarity with systems programming is essential. A grade of A- or above in CS4410 and extensive programming background would be good indicators of such a background. The course is geared mostly for Ph.D. students wishing to undertake further graduate study in systems.

The course is organized as a "paper chase" course. We will be reading recent research papers on the topic. The amount of reading required for the course is going to be relatively high. Additionally, the course will have a minimum of three projects, one of which is expected to be a publishable-quality paper.

Course Hours

CS6460 meets every Tuesday and Thursday at 1:25-2:45pm in Holister 372.


The course grade will be based on the final project, interim projects, presentation, and reviews. There are no prelims or finals.

Office Hours

2:45-3:45pm on Thursdays, immediately following class, or by appointment.

© 2011, Cornell University