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Application-level differentiated multimedia Web services using quality aware transcoding

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3 Author(s)
Chandra, S. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Duke Univ., Durham, NC, USA ; Ellis, C.S. ; Vahdat, A.

The ability of a Web service to provide low-latency access to its content is constrained by available network bandwidth. While providing differentiated quality of service (QoS) is typically enforced through network mechanisms, in this paper we introduce a robust mechanism for managing network resources using application-specific characteristics of Web services. We use transcoding to allow Web servers to customize the size of objects constituting a Web page, and hence the bandwidth consumed by that page, by dynamically varying the size of multimedia objects on a per-client basis. We leverage our earlier work on characterizing quality versus size tradeoffs in transcoding JPEG images to supply more information for determining the quality and size of the object to transmit. We evaluate the performance benefits of incorporating this information in a series of bandwidth management policies using realistic workloads and access scenarios to drive our system. The principal contribution of this paper is the demonstration that it is possible to use informed transcoding techniques to provide differentiated service and to dynamically allocate available bandwidth among different client classes, while delivering good quality of information content for all clients. We also show that it is possible to customize multimedia objects to the highly variable network conditions experienced by mobile clients in order to provide acceptable quality and latency depending on the networks used in accessing the service. We show that policies that aggressively transcode the larger images can produce images with quality factor values that closely follow the untranscoded base case while still saving as much as 150 kB. A transcoding policy that has knowledge of the characteristics of the link to the client can avoid as many as 40% of (unnecessary) transcodings.

Published in:

Selected Areas in Communications, IEEE Journal on  (Volume:18 ,  Issue: 12 )