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Towards a better-than-best-effort forwarding service for multimedia flows

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1 Author(s)
Jeffay, K. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., North Carolina Univ., Chapel Hill, NC, USA

A salient requirement of interactive multimedia applications is that they transmit data continuously at uniform rates with minimum possible end-to-end delay. The majority of these applications do not require hard and fast guarantees of network performance, but the current best-effort forwarding model of the Internet is frequently insufficient for realizing these requirements. Worse still, the requirement of uniform-rate transmission puts many multimedia applications at odds with current and proposed Internet network management practices that assume or require TCP-like reactions to packet loss. We are investigating router-based active queue management, specifically the use of queue occupancy thresholds to isolate TCP flows and to provide a better-than-best-effort forwarding service for flows in need of uniform-rate transmissions. Our current scheme, class-based thresholds (CBT), relies on a packet marking mechanism such as those proposed for realizing differentiated services on the Internet. CBT, when combined with existing active router queue management schemes such as random early detection (RED), provides a performance for TCP that approximates that achievable under a packet scheduling scheme and acceptable performance for multimedia flows. CBT is a simple and efficient mechanism with implementation complexity and run-time overhead comparable to that of RED

Published in:

MultiMedia, IEEE  (Volume:6 ,  Issue: 4 )