Grenoble INP - ENSIMAG LIG Laboratory ERODS Team
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Alain Tchana was born in 1985 in Nkongsamba, Cameroon. He studied there until 2008, where he obtained his master's degree in Networks and Multimedia Applications at the Computer Science Department of the University of Yaoundé I. After his internship at Institut de Recherche en Informatique de Toulouse (IRIT, in France), he started a PhD in the same laboratory under the supervision of Pr Daniel Hagimont. During his thesis, Alain Tchana worked on the design of orchestrators for the cloud. He obtained his PhD in 2011 and joined the Laboratoire d'Informatique de Grenoble (LIG, in France) under the supervision of Pr Noel De Palma. During his post-doctorate at LIG, Alain Tchana was interested in the optimization of benchmarking systems.

In 2013, Alain Tchana was recruited as Associate Professor at Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse where he joined the SEPIA team of IRIT. He focused his research on the field of operating systems and hypervisors. In 2015, Alain Tchana started a close collaboration with Cameroonian universities and more particularly with the Ecole Nationale Supérieure Polytechnique de Yaoundé (ENSPY) in Cameroon. Since then, he has been a guest lecturer in the Computer Engineering department of ENSPY where he teaches Cloud and Virtualization. Alain Tchana has supervised about twenty students from ENSPY.

After the defense of his Habilitation to Supervise Research in 2017, Alain Tchana was recruited in 2018 at Université Côte d'Azur at the rank of Full Professor. Then in 2019, Alain Tchana was recruited at Ecole Normale Supérieure (ENS) de Lyon in the Laboratoire de l'Informatique pour le Parallélisme (LIP). At ENS de Lyon, Alain Tchana was in charge of a Systems research group composed of about five PhD students. He was also the head of the computer science department, co-chair of the LIP's parity committee, and member of the CNRS national committee. In September 2023), Alain Tchana was recruited at ENSIMAG - Grenoble INP in the ERODS team of the LIG laboratory, where he is co-leader of the Défi INRIA OS.

Alain Tchana's work has been the subject of more than sixty articles published in prestigious international peer-reviewed conferences and journals (e.g., EuroSys, ATC, Infocom, DSN). Alain has served as PC member of several Systems conferences such as EuroSys, NSDI, DSN, ATC, hotOS. One of Alain Tchana's outstanding achievements is his ability to transmit the love of research to his PhD students. Indeed, all of the seven students he supervised are pursuing a research activity. Five of them have permanent positions in academia.

Alain Tchana is mainly interested in the following research topics: datacenter disaggregation, storage virtualization, virtualization of hardware features for virtualization, performance improvement, and securing applications. During his Ph.D. thesis and post-doctorate, his research was in autonomous administration, a sub-field of Middleware. He participated in developing the first orchestrators for the cloud (RoboConf, transferred to Linagora). He has 6 publications in Middleware, the major conference of that domain. Once permanent (in 2013), he oriented his research in Systems, particularly Virtualization and Operating Systems. He is now interested in improving application performance and saving energy. System research domain is at the junction of several research domains. He has 6 publications in EuroSys (a major conference in System), 2 publications in Infocom (major conference in Networks), 2 publications in DSN, 1 publication in RAID (major conferences in Security), 4 publications in Sigmetrics (major conference in Networks and Systems), and publication in SuperComputing (SC, major conference in HPC). His futur research project (see my CV) is pluridisciplinary. It combines Law and Systems to take into account data privacy laws at the operating system level.

Simply, Alain Tchana is a System's guy!

Systems Domain

Publications (2021-2022)

  • Out of Hypervisor (OoH): Efficient Dirty Page Tracking In Userspace Using Hardware Virtualization Features. SC 2022
    [ PDF][ Slides]
    Stella Bitchebe & Alain Tchana

  • Odile: A scalable tracing tool for non-rooted and on-device Android phones. RAID 2022.
    Alain Tchana, Lavoisier Lavoisier Wapet, Yérom-David Bromberg.

  • Simulating SIMBox frauds for detection investigation. CoNEXT Student Workshop 2022.
    Anne Josiane Kouam, Aline Carneiro Viana, and Alain Tchana.

  • TGVM: Live Migration of Virtual Machines on Heterogenous Same ISA Processors. (workshop) SPMA 2022, colocated with EuroSys 2022.
    Caleb Fonyuy-Asheri, Djob Mvondo, Fred Onanina, Alain Tchana.

  • Performance and design analysis of GiantVM, a distributed hypervisor. (workshop) SPMA 2022, colocated with EuroSys 2022.
    Brice Teguia, Mohamed Karaoui, Alain Tchana.

  • Montsalvat: Intel SGX Shielding for GraalVM Native Images. Middleware 2021.
    Peterson Yuhala, Jämes Ménétrey, Pascal Felber, Valerio Schiavoni, Alain Tchana, Gaël Thomas, Hugo Guiroux, and Jean-Pierre Lozi.

  • Tell me when you are sleepy and what may wake you up! SoCC 2021 (short paper).
    Djob Mvondo, Antonio Barbalace, Alain Tchana, and Gilles Muller.

  • Data center disaggregation - when and how much? MASCOTS 2021 (short paper).
    Thomas Begin, Alexandre Brandwajn, and Alain Tchana.

  • SIMBox bypass frauds in cellular networks: Strategies, evolution, detection, and future directions. IEEE Communications Surveys and Tutorials 2021.
    Josiane Kouam, Aline Carneiro, and Alain Tchana

  • Mitigating vulnerability windows with hypervisor transplant. EuroSys 2021.
    Dinh Ngoc Tu, Boris Teabe, Alain Tchana, Gilles Muller, and Daniel Hagimont

  • FaaSCache: an opportunistic free caching system for FaaS platforms. EuroSys 2021.
    Djob Mvondo, Mathieu Bacou, Kevin Nguetchouang, Lucien Ngale, Stephane Pouget, Josiane Kouam, Renaud Lachaize, Jinho Hwang, Tim Wood, Daniel Hagimont, Noël De Palma, Batchakui bernabé and Alain Tchana

  • Extending Intel PML for Hardware-Assisted Working Set Size Estimation of VMs. VEE 2021.
    Stella Bitchebe, Djob Mvondo, Alain Tchana, Laurent Réveillère, and Noel De Palma

  • (No)Compromis: Paging virtualization is not a fatality. VEE 2021.
    Boris Teabe, Peterson Yuhala, Alain Tchana, Fabien Hermenier, Daniel Hagimont, and Gilles Muller

  • Plinius: Secure and Persistent Machine Learning Model Training. DSN 2021.
    Peterson Yuhala, Pascal Felber, Valerio Schiavoni, and Alain Tchana

  • Find out the complete publications list on dblp

Current Ph.D. Students

  • Direction of Dufy Teguia's thesis
    Subject: Techniques avancées pour la spécialisation de fonctions réseaux conteneurisées.
    Period: Mar. 2023 - Mar. 2026
    Funding: CIFRE (Orange Labs)
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 34% (Director)
    Kahina Lazri 33% (co-supervisor)
    Renaud Lachaize 33% (co-supervisor)

  • Direction of Assane Fall's thesis
    Subject: Hoisting Linux Memory manager to userspace.
    Period: Oct. 2022 - Oct. 2025
    Funding: Defi INRIA
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 34% (co-director)
    JP Lozi 33% (co-supervisor)
    Renaud Lachaize 33% (co-supervisor)

  • Direction of Theophile Dubuc's thesis
    Subject: Efficient storage virtualization.
    Period: Nov. 2021 - Nov. 2024
    Funding: CIFRE (with Outscale)
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Pierre Olivier 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Kevin Nguetchouang's thesis
    Subject: Efficient storage virtualization.
    Period: Dec. 2020 - Dec. 2023
    Funding: Labex MiLyon
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Pierre Olivier 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Josiane Kouam's thesis
    Subject: Simbox fraud mitigation.
    Period: Nov. 2019 - May 2023
    Funding: INRIA CORDI-S
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Aline Carneiro 50% (co-director)

Former Ph.D. Students

  • Direction of Stella Bitchebe's thesis
    Subject: Out-of-Hypervisor (OoH): When Nested Virtualization Becomes Practical.
    Period: Mar. 2019 - Feb. 2023
    Funding: ANR Scalevisor
    Currently: Post-Doc at McGuill (Canada)
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 100%

  • Direction of Lavoisier Wapet's thesis
    Subject: Performance and resource management in nested virtualization systems.
    Period: Fev. 2017 - Mai 2020
    Funding: MESR
    Currently: Post-Doc LIRIS (Lyon)
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Daniel Hagimont 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Djob Mvondo's thesis
    Subject: Privileged VM management in virtualized systems.
    Period: Feb. 2018 - Dec. 2020
    Funding: FEDER
    Distinction: Younger african Ph.D. Doctor (22 years old), and GDR RSD and ASF best thesis award
    Currently: Associate Professor University of Rennes (France)
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Noel De Palma 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Bao Bui's thesis
    Subject: NUMA management in virtualized systems.
    Period: Oct. 2017 - Oct. 2020
    Funding: Scholarship 911 Vietnam
    Currently: Lecturer at Can Tho University
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Daniel Hagimont 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Mathieu Bacou's thesis
    Subject: Performance and resource management in nested virtualization systems.
    Period: Feb. 2017 - May 2020
    Funding: CIFRE Atos
    Currently: Maître de Conférences
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Daniel Hagimont 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Grégoire Todeschi's thesis
    Subject: Memory overcommitment in virtualized systems.
    Period: Oct. 2016 - June 2020
    Funding: MESR
    Currently: Industry
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Daniel Hagimont 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Vlad Nitu's thesis
    Subject: Memory management in virtualized systems.
    Period: Oct. 2015 - Oct. 2018
    Funding: MESR
    Distinction: GDR RSD and ASF best thesis award (2nd place)
    Currently: CR CNRS
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Daniel Hagimont 50% (co-director)

  • Direction of Boris Teabe's thesis
    Subject: Performance optimization in virtualized systems.
    Period: Oct. 2014 - Oct. 2017
    Funding: INRIA CORDI-S
    Distinction: GDR RSD and ASF best thesis award (1rst place) et Leopold Escande award
    Currently: Maître de Conférences
    Supervision: Alain Tchana 50% (co-director)
    Daniel Hagimont 50% (co-director)


In February 2023, my Ph.D. student Stella Bitchebe defended her thesis infront a great jury: Prof Edouard Bugnion (Reporter), Prof Gaël Thomas (Reporter), Prof Guillaume Urvoy-Keller (Examiner), Dr Renaud Lachaize (Examiner), Prof Oana Balmau (Examiner), Prof Natacha Crooks (Examiner), Prof Laurent Réveillère (Examiner and President).

In January 2023, I welcomed, at the LIG laboratory in Grenoble, two guest researchers from the Polytechnic school of Yaounde (Cameroon): Prof Bernabe Batchakui and Dr Anne-Marie Chana.

I am co-leader of the Défi INRIA OS .

I will be member of the PC for NSDI 2024, hotOS 2023, EuroSys 2023, ATC 2023 and 2022, DSN 2022, and Reviewer for ACM TOCS 2022.

I was keynote speaker at the 11th IEEE International Conference on Cloud Networking in Paris.

I was member of the jury for the EuroSys 2022 Roger Needham PhD Award and the Dennis M. Ritchie Thesis Award 2022.

Since September 2022, I'm Professor at INP Grenoble, LIG laboratory.

From May 14th to 15th, I will organize at ENS Lyon the Unikraft summer code. Do not hesitate to register.

I have been awarded "Prix de la Francophonie pour Jeunes Chercheurs". Notice that Francophonie (which represents all countries which speak french) includes +40 countries. I will receive my prize on October in Canada, by AUF organization.

I have been invited as keynote speaker for EuroDW, which will take place in Renned on April, 5, 2022. EuroDW is the EuroSys doctoral workshop. Thanks to the organizers.

I co-organize rgpdOS workshop, which will take place at Lyon 3 University on January 13th 2022.

I am member of the jury of the Roger Needham PhD Award.

I co-organize IAoundé in Cameroon, at Ecole Polytechnique de Yaoundé, January 29th to Februaby 2nd in 2022.

2022-2027, I will lead of a CNRS IRP (International Research Projet) with with Polytechnique Yaoundé, for 5 years.


Since 2022

SEPC (Système d'Exploitation et Programmation Concurrente)


This teaching focuses on operating systems and systems programming.

Since 2022

Software Engineering


Since 2022



2019 - 2022

Virtualisation avancée

ENS de Lyon, M1

This teaching focuses on the internal architecture of operating systems: how the process, memory, file system, networks, etc. are virtualised. I also present hardware solutions that facilitate virtualisation.

2019 - 2022

Evaluation de performance et réseaux

ENS de Lyon, L3

This teaching focuses on the internal architecture of operating systems (process, memory, file system, IPC, Syscalls, etc.). I describe how its basic services are implemented (concepts, abstractions, mechanisms and policies), how they interact with each other, with hardware and applications.



ENS de Lyon, L3

I introduce the basic concepts of the network (IP address, OSI layers, protocol, services, etc.). This course has been introduced temporarily (as part of the Architecture course) in L3 which does not yet have a Network course. A whole course unit will be dedicated to the latter in L3 from September 2021 as part of the computing training reform that I am currently leading at ENS Lyon.

2018 - 2019

Bases de l'informatique

IUT de Nice, L3

This course deals with the basic notions of computing: the hardware part of a computer (processor, memory, disk, network card), the software part of a computer (operating system, server application), networks, the Internet, installation of an operating system, etc.

2018 - 2019

Outils collaboratifs

IUT de Nice, L2

This course deals with IT tools for collaborative work. I introduced the platforms: Slack, Trello, AppearIn, Zed (secure communication).

2018 - 2019

Informatique Décisionnelle

IUT de Nice, L2

This subject deals with computer technologies useful for decision support, for an audience of non-computer specialists. I have taught the use of the Microsoft Office suite (Access database, creation of forms, reports, graphs, VBA programming, and SQL).

2018 - 2019

Programmation avancée


This course deals with the following concepts: processing XML documents by programming, implementation of compilers (notion of grammar, lexical analysis, syntactic analysis and semantic analysis), UML modeling, some design patterns (MVC, visitor and decorator), unit tests and introspection.

Since 2013

Big Data

Université de Nice M1 & Polytechnique Yaoundé M2

This course focuses on the infrastructure aspect of big data. To this end, the following notions are addressed: motivation of the bigdata, positioning with traditional data processing (limits of old technologies), the definition of the bigdata, presentation of its disciplines (visualization, analysis, platform, systems, hardware), focus on infrastructure-related disciplines (platform, systems, and hardware), presentation of the two main modes of processing of data (batch processing and streaming processing), presentation of approaches to solving these problems, presentation of the corresponding bigdata platforms.

Since 2013

Cloud Computing

Université de Nice M1 & Polytechnique Yaoundé M2

This course covers all the basics related to Cloud Computing: principles of the cloud, benefits of the cloud for users and providers, models of the cloud, challenges of the cloud, the most famous public clouds, management systems of a private cloud, virtualisation and its role in the cloud, consolidation of virtual machines, containers, and legal aspects of the cloud.

2013 - 2018

Programmation Web

N7 M1 & Formation Fullstack L2

This course introduces technologies that ease the programming of web applications, namely: the MVC (Model View Controler) design pattern, ORM (Object Relational Mapping), AngularJS, Bootstrap, JQuery, JEE, Django, and relational databases. This teaching is accompanied by a project consisting in developing a realistic web application.

2013 - 2018

Programmation distribuée et intergiciels

N7 M1

This course covers the following concepts: distributed programming using sockets, RMI or JMS, and programming the integration of legacy applications using Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) technology. This teaching is generally completed with a project carried out in groups of 4.

2013 - 2018

Systèmes d’exploitation

N7 M1 & Formation Fullstack L2

The concepts addressed in this course are of two types: internal constitution of an operating system (scheduler, memory manager, etc.), and use of an operating system (shell, system programming, etc.). The Linux operating system is used as a basis for work. This teaching is supplemented by a fil rouge project carried out by each student.


Since 2023

Mutant: My research project during the next 10 years

The last decade has seen the rapid digitalization of our societies (health, politics, transport, and so on), resulting in the appearance of a large diversity of applications and hardware that the operating system (OS) must consider. In addition, new critical concerns have emerged such as data privacy and carbon emission. Consequently, the OS (Linux, FreeBSD, macOS, and Windows), which is at the heart of the machine, includes general-purpose sub-optimal policies (memory management, process scheduling). Their customization is arduous, not within reach of system integrators, and requires machine reboot (thus causing unavailability). The fundamental problem of popular OSes is their monolithic nature, which enforces packaging all OS services in a single binary that runs in the privileged mode of the CPU (kernel space), where customization is intricate.
Mutant resurrects microkernels, which advocates uncoupling OS services and running all of them in the unprivileged mode of the CPU (userspace), where quick customization is conceivable. Given an existing monolithic OS, Mutant mutates it into another one (called fluid OS) whose services can be specialized by integrators to meet a specific setup for achieving optimal performance, energy consumption, and privacy. Mutant should answer four questions:
Q1: Designing. How to redesign a monolithic OS without sacrificing maintainability? Based on Linux and instrumentation, we will identify and instrument all OS functions that will allow service explode and outsourcing into userspace.
Q2: Abstracting. Which abstraction suits userspace OS services as Process and Thread are respectively strongly and weakly isolated. We will invent the appropriate first-class concepts using hardware and software co-design.
Q3: Characterizing. What should be the language support provided to integrators? We will characterize existing high-level languages and we will create Domain Specific Languages.
Q4: Verifying. How to keep the resulting OS as safe as the original one? We will verify all our OS extensions, userspace libraries, and communication protocols using verification tools and techniques.
To show the effectiveness of Mutant, I will study several use cases, targeting energy consumption, performance, and privacy goals. Concerning the latter for instance, I will design a GDPR compliant file system services so that all applications could take benefit from it. By considering GDPR at the OS-level, my approach prevents application developpers and companies to deal with the law. I will conduct this pluridisciplinary work in collaboration with law researchers. We have published on arXiv a vision paper.

Since 2023

Out of Hypervisor (OoH)

OoH is a new virtualization research axis advocating the exposure of individually current hypervisor-oriented hardware virtualization features to virtual machines (instead of trying to virtulize full hardware inside VMs). This way VM’s processes can also benefit from those features. We first leveraged OoH to improve checkpoint/restore, garbage collectors, and buffer overflow detection systems. We are now seeking to implement OoH in bare-metal.

2020 - 2024

PicNic (ANR)

Data transfering among datacenters.

2019 - 2020

SprinkledOS (Attractivity ENS Lyon)

Distributed virtual machines.

2019 - 2020

ScalevisorFT (Impulsion labex MiLyon)

Fault tolerance in disaggregated environments.

2019 - 2022

Scalevisor (ANR)

Distributed hypervisors.

2019 - 2021

IMAD (Toulouse Tech Transfer)

Malicious mobile App detection.

2017 - 2019

BlablaMem (Région Occitanie)

Memory distribution within a rack.

2016 - 2017

KelCloud (Toulouse Tech Transfer)

How to choose your cloud.

2015 - 2017

Zombie (Toulouse Tech Transfer)

Memory disaggregation.

Conferences Organization


  • I have participated as partner/leader to 8 national projects (for a total amount of 1.204M) since I have been permanent. Departmental grants have funded most of my Ph.D. students, given the excellent candidates I have often presented.

  • Since 2022, I am co-responsible for international relations at LIG.

  • Since 2022, I am member of the keynote speaker organizer group at LIG.

  • Jury member of the EuroSys 2022 Roger Needham PhD Award and the Dennis M. Ritchie Thesis Award 2022.

  • PC member at NSDI 2024, hotOS 2023, EuroSys 2023, ATC 2023 and 2022, DSN 2022, and Reviewer at ACM TOCS 2021 and 2022.

  • In 2022, I co-organized the Lyon Unikraft Hackathon.

  • 2021-2022, Director of the ENS Lyon computer science department.

  • Sponsor Chair at EuroSys 2021.

  • Since 2021, member of Comité national du CNSR (CNRS research evaluation, junior and senior researcher hiring, etc.).

  • Since 2021, member of Comité national du CNSR (CNRS research evaluation, junior and senior researcher hiring, etc.).

  • In 2021, member of Comité de perfectionnement du master d'informatique d'Institut Polytechnique de Paris.

  • 2020-2022, I was co-head of Systèmes, Réseaux et Télécommunication research topic in FIL (Fédération Informatique Lyonnaise). I organized a lot of talks, open to the entire french System community. I invited several speakers, including David D. Patterson, Turing Awards 2017.

  • 2020-2021, Deputy Director of the ENS Lyon computer science department.

  • Since 2021, Head of the associated team Inria Machine Learning, Network, System and Security (MLNS2) with Polytechnique Yaoundé (Cameroon).

  • In 2020, I co-organized Les journées Cloud et Virtualization in Lyon.

  • Since 2020, I am co-head of Cloud and Virtualization research topic in GDR RSD.

  • Since 2020, member of the Africa AI board of United Nations Organization.

  • Since 2020, Elected member of the ASF's Bureau (chapter FRANCE of the ACM Sigops).

  • Since 2020, Co-leader of the Systems, Networks and Telecommunications theme of the FIL (Fédération Informatique Lyonnaise).

  • Since 2020, Co-founder and moderator of the French Computer Science Research forum (+150 researchers).

  • Since 2020, Member of the ASDS (African Society in Digital Sciences) Bureau.

  • Since 2020, Member of the United Nation Roundtable 3C on AI.

  • In 2019, I co-organized SIF Ph.D. student day in Nice.

  • Since 2019, Member of the GDR RSD steering committee: I'm co-leading the Cloud and Virtualization theme.

  • Since 2019, Co-responsible of the LIP's Gender Equality Committee.

  • Since 2019, Member of the ComPas steering committee.

  • Since 2018, Member appointed to the IRIT Laboratory Council.

Medias, Awards, and Distinctions

  • My Ph.D. student Stella Bitchebe, who obtained the NEC Student fellowship grants 2021 was interviewed by Cameroon National Television on the occasion of the celebration of the International Women's Rights Day (8 March 2021). Listen to her interview here.

  • My former Ph.D. student Djob Mvondo, who defended at the age of 22 in December 2020, was cited as an example for the youth by the president of the republic of Cameroon. Read more about in cameroon-info.

  • Private deployment of a distance learning platform during covid for African institutions and universities. Find out more here (click on Cameroon): used by +100 institutions.

  • Development of a website and mobile application to track the progress of covid in Cameroon. Find out more on youtube and linkedin.

  • In 2008, when I was a master's student, a friend and I pulled off a technological feat to solve the problem of changing the telephone numbering system in Cameroon. Find out more explanation on it here.

Where to find me

46 Allée d'Italie
ENS Site Monod
69007 Lyon

Email Me At