Zhenkai Zhu


During my Ph.D study, my work focused on application development of the new Named Data Networking (NDN) architecture, overcoming challenges and grasping opportunities of the new communication paradigm, as well as shaping the NDN architecture itself in the process.

About Me

I received my B.E. degree in Automation from Tsinghua University in July 2008. After a short rest at home, I came to U.S. to pursue my Ph.D degree in Computer Science at University of California, Los Angeles.

My advisor is Dr. Lixia Zhang, and I feel lucky to work with a few amazing lab mates in Internet Research Lab. I received my Ph.D degree in June 2013. My thesis can be found here: [Thesis] [Slides].


Global Scale Mobility Support

Named Data Networking



After we updated our Sync implementation to ChronoSync, we went on to design and implemented a fully distributed dropbox-like file sharing application over NDN. It has a user interface that resembles the commercial counterpart, supports version control, and has an easy way to share file even without infrastructure support.

WebRTC For NDN (ongoing)

WebRTC is an opensource project that enables web browsers with Real-Time Communications (RTC) capabilities via simple Javascript API. We plan to make WebRTC work over NDN architecture.

Trust Management for the NDN Testbed (ongoing)

Deploy secure key distribution mechanisms for our NDN testbed to meet the security need of applications.

Textchat with Sync Approach over NDN

In distributed systems, it is frequently desirable for multiple hosts to have approximately the same view of data. This is general enough to warrant a basic shared mechanism, Synchronization or Sync, for distributing information. PARC's people first proposed this idea of Sync, and we later developed our own Sync implementation with a slightly different design, Chronos. To demostrate our Chronos library, we wrote a multi-party textchat application powered by Chronos. We think this helps shape the design of Sync and reveal the issues one must solve for Sync to work.

Audio, Video and Text Package over NDN

The package provide audio, video and text services for multi-user conferences over NDN. Traditionally, these services are provided with some central server; we developed a distributed system with no center control point and takes advantage of NDN's built-in multicast ability to make the system more scalable. Security is also integrated into the design.

Mobility Aware Home Networking

Apple Inc.'s Back To My Mac (BTMM) service provides a nice mobility aware home networking solution not by proposing a bunch of new protocols, but by putting together a set of existing protocols and software tools. Users get connectivity to the machines at home regardless of whether they are on move or behind a NAT. We present the design of BTMM and propose extensions to make it a potential solution for general home networking problem.

Mobility Protocol Design and Simulations

Simulations of Global Home Agent to Home Agent Protocol and its extension in NS-2 and Qualnet.

Survey of Mobility Protocols

We survey the mobility protocols proposed by Internet research communities since the early 90s. We categorize them by different standards, analyze the tradeoffs they made and provide insights for researchers.


CS 217A Internet Architecture and Protocols

Special Reader, Fall 2009, Winter 2011, Winter 2012 (Instructor: Prof. Lixia Zhang)

CS 33 Computer Organization

Teaching Assistant, Spring 2010 (Instructor: Prof. Glenn Reinman)


Supporting Mobility in the Global Internet, Lixia Zhang, Ryuji Wakikawa, Zhenkai Zhu. ACM MOBICOM MICNET Workshop 2009.

Supporting Mobility For Internet Cars, Zhenkai Zhu, Ryuji Wakikawa, Lixia Zhang. IEEE Communication Magazine, May 2011.

SAIL: A Scalable Approach for Wide-Area IP Mobility, Zhenkai Zhu, Ryuji Wakikawa, Lixia Zhang. IEEE INFOCOM Mobiworld Workshop 2011.

ACT: An Audio Conference Tool over Named Data Networking, Zhenkai Zhu, Sen Wang, Xu Yang, Van Jacobson, Lixia Zhang, ACM SIGCOMM ICN Workshop 2011.

Home As You Go: An Engineering Approach to Mobility-Capable Extended Home Networks, Zhenkai Zhu, Ryuji Wakikawa, Stuart Cheshire, Lixia Zhang, AINTEC 2011.

A New Approach to Securing Audio Conference Tools , Zhenkai Zhu, Paolo Gasti, Yanbin Lu, Jeffery Burke, Van Jacobson, Lixia Zhang, AWFIT 2011.

Chronos: Serverless Multi-User Chat Over NDN, Zhenkai Zhu, Chaoyi Bian, Alexander Afanasyev, Van Jacobson, Lixia Zhang, NDN TR008, October 2012.

Let's ChronoSync: Decentralized Dataset State Synchronization in Named Data Networking, Zhenkai Zhu, Alexander Afanasyev, ICNP'13, October 2013 (Accepted).


A Survey of Mobility Support In the Internet, Zhenkai Zhu, Ryuji Wakikawa, Lixia Zhang. RFC 6301, 2011.

Understanding Apple's Back to My Mac Service, Cheshire Stuart, Zhenkai Zhu, Ryuji Wakikawa, Lixia Zhang. RFC 6281, 2011.


My Git Repositories, click Here.

For later projects, such as ChronoSync, ChronoChat, ChronoShare, you can find them here: Named-data.