Deploying Secure Distributed Systems: Comparative Analysis of GNS3 and SEED Internet Emulator

Lewis Golightly, Paolo Modesti, Victor Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Network emulation offers a flexible solution for network deployment and operations, leveraging software to consolidate all nodes in a topology and utilizing the resources of a single host system server. This research paper investigated the state of cybersecurity in virtualized systems, covering vulnerabilities, exploitation techniques, remediation methods, and deployment strategies, based on an extensive review of the related literature. We conducted a comprehensive performance evaluation and comparison of two network-emulation platforms: Graphical Network Simulator-3 (GNS3), an established open-source platform, and the SEED Internet Emulator, an emerging platform, alongside physical Cisco routers. Additionally, we present a Distributed System that seamlessly integrates network architecture and emulation capabilities. Empirical experiments assessed various performance criteria, including the bandwidth, throughput, latency, and jitter. Insights into the advantages, challenges, and limitations of each platform are provided based on the performance evaluation. Furthermore, we analyzed the deployment costs and energy consumption, focusing on the economic aspects of the proposed application.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)464-492
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Cybersecurity and Privacy
Issue number3
Early online date3 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2023 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (

Funding: This work was partly supported by VC Research (VCR 0000203).


  • Cisco routers
  • GNS3
  • SEED Internet Emulator
  • cybersecurity
  • network emulation
  • performance evaluation
  • secure distributed systems


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