SCinet's Xnet (eXtreme net) provides a venue to showcase emerging, often pre-commercial or pre-competitive, developmental networking technologies, protocols, and experimental networking applications.
The SCinet Exhibit floor network has evolved into a robust, high-performance, production-quality network that exhibitors and attendees depend on for reliable local area, wide area and commodity network service. Consequently, it has become increasingly difficult for SCinet to showcase bleeding edge, potentially fragile technology. Simultaneously, OEMs have at times been reticent about showcasing bleeding-edge hardware in SCinet, as it became a mission critical, production network.
Xnet provides the solution to this dichotomy by providing a venue which is by definition bleeding-edge, pre-standard and in which fragility is understood. Xnet thus provides its participants (from both the commercial and research communities) an opportunity to showcase emerging, prototype or experimental network gear or capabilities, prior to their general commercial availability in a fault tolerant (forgiving) environment. Participants in SCinet's Xnet environment gain insight from the worlds most advanced computing and computer networking audience.
Xnet debuted in Portland, OR at SC99 where Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) technology was used in the implementation of OC-48 SONET rings on the conference show floor. At SC2000, Xnet demonstrated pre-production and early delivery 10-Gigabit Ethernet equipment connecting several exhibit floor booths. The SC2001 Xnet expanded the deployment of 10 Gigabit Ethernet using equipment from several vendors and using 10 Gigabit Ethernet in several Bandwidth Challenge applications. In Baltimore at SC2002, with 10 Gigabit Ethernet a commodity and the telecom industry focused on survival, Xnet took a sabbatical. 2003 provided opportunities to explore early next-generation optical switching technologies and consider special purpose optical network testbeds. In 2004, Xnet returned with a focus on advanced optical switching and new transport technologies. For 2005 Xnet consisted of three separate technology demonstrations; 16 - 64k pMTU (SuperJumboFrames), 10G Encryption and Remote Direct Memory Access over InfiniBand. Please refer to materials available at the time of the conference for information about Xnet for 2006.