TOPT: Supporting flash crowd events in hybrid overlay-based live streaming
2015 IFIP Networking Conference (IFIP Networking)
Recent studies show that an increasing number of over-the-top live streams is delivered over the Internet. For the delivery of those streams, the dynamically changing and potentially large number of users imposes a major challenge. Flash crowds, where the number of users multiplies or significantly drops in a very small time frame, can cause serious degradations in the streaming performance. Due to the missing support for global network-layer multicast, overlay-based approaches have been
... studied, showing that, with relaxed time constraints, they can scale well with the number of users. Yet, to support flash crowds, scaling has to happen quickly to keep up also with rapidly changing populations. Only a few approaches exist that focus on this aspect by influencing the streaming topology and, so far, it is not clear if and how these mechanisms can be applied to state-of-the-art hybrid streaming systems. Therefore, in this paper, TOPT is proposed, integrating new as well as existing mechanisms in a common framework. The evaluation shows that the streaming topology, indeed, plays a major role during flash crowds. The lightweight and decentralized treeforming and topology optimization mechanisms of TOPT, combined with tracker extensions to attach new peers in batches, greatly help improving the streaming performance in terms of reduced playback interruptions by more than 60% and slight reduction in communication overhead at an acceptable increase in average startup delays by 24%.