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Improving Transport Layer Performance in Multihop Ad Hoc Networks by Exploiting MAC Layer Information

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3 Author(s)
Hongqiang Zhai ; Philips Res. North America, Briarcliff Manor, NY ; Chen, X. ; Yuguang Fang

The traditional TCP congestion control mechanism encounters a number of new problems and suffers a poor performance when the IEEE 802.11 MAC protocol is used in multihop ad hoc networks. Many of the problems result from medium contention at the MAC layer. In this paper, we first illustrate that severe medium contention and congestion are intimately coupled, and TCP's congestion control algorithm becomes too coarse in its granularity, causing throughput instability and excessively long delay. Further, we illustrate TCP's severe unfairness problem due to the medium contention and the tradeoff between aggregate throughput and fairness. Then, based on the novel use of channel busyness ratio, a more accurate metric to characterize the network utilization and congestion status, we propose a new wireless congestion control protocol (WCCP) to efficiently and fairly support the transport service in multihop ad hoc networks. In this protocol, each forwarding node along a traffic flow exercises the inter-node and intra-node fair resource allocation and determines the MAC layer feedback accordingly. The end-to-end feedback, which is ultimately determined by the bottleneck node along the flow, is carried back to the source to control its sending rate. Extensive simulations show that WCCP significantly outperforms traditional TCP in terms of channel utilization, delay, and fairness, and eliminates the starvation problem

Published in:

Wireless Communications, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:6 ,  Issue: 5 )