A Wireless Networking Framework providing System eXtensions for Supporting Multiple Channels, Multiple Interfaces, and Other Interface Capabilities

Net-X is a framework being developed by the Prof. Nitin Vaidya's group at UIUC to provide support for exploiting various forms of diversity available in a wireless network in the form of multiple channels, interfaces, transmission rates/power-levels etc.

Several interface capabilities may be available in next generation wireless networks. These include the ability to set the channel of operation and data rate on a frequent basis, and the ability to equip devices with multiple radio interfaces and multiple antennas. It may be possible to significantly improve the performance of wireless networks by exploiting these interface capabilities through carefully designed protocols. However, current operating systems have poor support for implementing protocols that need to use these diverse capabilities. The goal of the Net-X project is to develop generic OS support for utilizing interface capabilities, such that the support is cleanly integrated into the network stack. As a first step in this direction, we have developed an architecture in Linux to support the use of multiple channels, multiple interfaces, and interface switching. The current framework can be easily extended to support other capabilities, and these additional extensions are part of the project's future roadmap.

We have set up a wireless testbed that uses the Net-X framework, and have so far implemented a set of multichannel protocols, that were previously developed in our group.

Visualization Tool

A visualization tool for viewing the testbed nodes in real-time has been developed as part of the Net-X project. The tool enables one to see the nodes along with the channels allocated, the links between the nodes, the quality of the links, and the routes taken by the packets. A snapshot of the visualization tool is shown below:


A new version of Net-X is now available for download. The new version is more stable and includes fixes for different bugs which were identified during testing. The new version of the code can be downloaded by selecting Version 1.0 from the link below.

Net-XCode1.0.tgz file

Some Related Publications




Prof. Nitin H. Vaidya


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