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Wireless Mesh Networks: From Theory to Deployed Systems
Instructor: Dr. Victor Bahl, Manager Networking Research, Microsoft Research
Date: September 11, 2006 - 14.00-18.00 (half day)
Course Description

A wireless mesh network is a peer-to-peer multi-hop wireless network in which participant nodes cooperate with one another to route packets. Unlike Mobile Ad hoc Networks (MANETs) where every routing node is mobile, routing nodes in mesh networks are stationary. Together these "mesh nodes" form the network's backbone. Other non-routing mobile nodes ("clients") connect to the mesh nodes and use the backbone to communicate with one another over large distances and with nodes on the Internet.

Mesh networks extend high-speed local area networking services to the wide area. Mesh networks are an attractive low-cost technology option for robust broadband communication for:
(1) City-wide Broadband Internet Coverage.
(2) Neighborhood Community Networks.
(3) All-Wireless Offices
(4) Rural Networks.

This is a fast-paced tutorial which will span a wide range of topics with a focus on the developing practical, deployable, and self-managing wireless mesh networks. We will cover important research results from the past and promising new directions being pursued by researchers in the industry and academia. Topics that will be covered include:

  • Application and usage scenarios
  • Practical system architecture for enterprise-wide office meshes, city-wide broadband meshes, and neighborhood community meshes
  • Industry players and commercial technologies
  • Techniques and algorithms for increasing capacity and scalability
  • Multi-radio, multi-channel, multi-spectral systems
  • Medium access control protocols
  • Network management - auto-configuration (zero configuration), fault diagnosis, and what-if analysis
  • Design, implementation and performance of routing protocols and link selection metrics
  • Support for QoS and fairness
  • Privacy and security - threat analysis and some solutions
  • Cross-layer design and optimization
  • Information theoretic tools for predicting network viability and performance
  • Testbed design, measurements, and deployment experience
  • Emerging standards: IEEE 802.11s, IEEE 802.15.5, IEEE 802.16 mesh, IEEE 802.20 mesh
  • Advanced antenna technologies (MIMO, beam forming, etc.)
  • Spectrum policy and etiquettes.
  • Spectrum sensing, cognitive and frequency-agile radios


The ACM SIGCOMM 2006 conference would like to thank the following organizations for their support.