The convergence on IP of a wide variety of traffic types has strengthened the need for service differentiation. Service differentiation relies on two equally important components: (i) resource allocation, i.e., what resources does a given service class have access to; and (ii) contention resolution, i.e., how is access to shared resources arbitrated between services classes. The latter has been well studied with numerous mechanisms, e.g., scheduling and buffer management, supporting it in modern routers. In contrast, relatively few studies exist on the former, and in particular on the impact of routing that determines the resources a given service class is assigned to. This is the focus of the paper, which seeks to investigate how routing influences a network’s ability to efficiently support different service classes. Of particular interest is the extent to which the ability to route service classes separately is beneficial. This question is explored for a base configuration involving two classes with either similar or entirely different service objectives (cost functions). The paper’s contributions are in demonstrating and quantifying the benefits that the added flexibility of different (dual) routing affords, and in developing an efficient heuristic for computing jointly optimal routing solutions. The former can motivate the deployment of newly standardized multi-topology routing (MTR) functionality. The latter is a key enabler for the effective use of such capability.
Date of this Version
IP networks, routing, optimization
Date Posted: 24 October 2007
This document has been peer reviewed.