Receiver Based Management of Low Bandwidth Access Links

Neil Spring, Maureen Chesire, Mark Berryman, Vivek Sahasranaman, Thomas Anderson and Brian Bershad.   Receiver Based Management of Low Bandwidth Access Links. Proc. of the IEEE INFOCOM 2000 Conference on Computer Communications, March 2000, pages 245 - 254.


In this paper, we describe a receiver-based congestion control policy that leverages TCP flow control mechanisms to prioritize mixed traffic loads across access links. We manage queueing at the access link to: (1) improve the response time of interactive network applications; (2) reduce congestion-related packet losses; while (3) maintaining high throughput for bulk-transfer applications. Our policy controls queue length by manipulating receive socket buffer sizes. We have implemented this solution in a dynamically loadable Linux kernel module, and tested it over low-bandwidth links. Our approach yields a 7-fold improvement in packet latency over an unmodified system while maintaining 94% link utilization. In the common case, congestion-related packet losses at the access link can be eliminated. Finally, by prioritizing short flows, we show that our system reduces the time to download a complex Web page during a large background transfer by a factor of two.