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Dynamic Right Sizing

Over the past decade, TCP has become the ubiquitous transport protocol for the Internet. However, stock TCP performs abysmally over high-bandwidth or high-delay links (or more generally, networks with high bandwidth-delay products). As a result, the performance of application infrastructures such as computational grids and high-volume web servers, which are built on TCP, is crippled.

To address this problem, grid and network researchers continue to manually optimize buffer sizes to keep the network pipe full, and thus achieve acceptable performance. Although such tuning can increase delivered throughput by an order of magnitude, it requires administrator privileges and hence the changes cannot be made by the end user. Instead, system administrators at the source and destination hosts must separately configure their systems to use large buffers; this process is tedious and time consuming. Furthermore, this manual tuning only works well for the pair of hosts that are manually tuned. If a TCP connection is split, as is the case with some kinds of firewalls, the firewall administrators must also get involved.

Dynamic Right Sizing is a straightforward modification to TCP that automatically and transparently addresses the above problems while maintaining connection semantics and the ubiquitously deployed features of TCP.

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