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Path Diversity in Packet Switched Networks: Performance Analysis and Rate Allocation

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3 Author(s)
Fashandi, S. ; Univ. of Waterloo, Waterloo ; Gharan, S.O. ; Khandani, A.K.

Path diversity works by setting up multiple parallel connections between the end points using the topological path redundancy of the network. In this paper, forward error correction (FEC) is applied across multiple independent paths to enhance the end-to-end reliability. Internet paths are modeled as erasure Gilbert-Elliot channels. First, it is shown that over any erasure channel, maximum distance separable (MDS) codes achieve the minimum probability of irrecoverable loss among all block codes of the same size. Then, we prove the probability of irrecoverable loss decays exponentially for the asymptotically large number of paths. Moreover, it is shown that in the optimal rate allocation, each path is assigned a positive rate iff its quality is above a certain threshold. The quality of a path is defined as the percentage of the time it spends in the bad state. Finally, using dynamic programming, a heuristic suboptimal algorithm with polynomial runtime is proposed for rate allocation over the available paths. This algorithm converges to the asymptotically optimal rate allocation when the number of paths is large. The simulation results show that the proposed algorithm approximates the optimal rate allocation very closely, and provides significant performance improvement compared to the alternative schemes of rate allocation.

Published in:

Global Telecommunications Conference, 2007. GLOBECOM '07. IEEE

Date of Conference:

26-30 Nov. 2007