Stochastic Bandwidth Estimation in Networks With Random Service
IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking
Numerous methods for available bandwidth estimation have been developed for wireline networks, and their effectiveness is well-documented. However, most methods fail to predict bandwidth availability reliably in a wireless setting. It is accepted that the increased variability of wireless channel conditions makes bandwidth estimation more difficult. However, a (satisfactory) explanation why these methods are failing is missing. This paper seeks to provide insights into the problem of bandwidth
... oblem of bandwidth estimation in wireless networks or, more broadly, in networks with random service. We express bandwidth availability in terms of bounding functions with a defined violation probability. Exploiting properties of a stochastic min-plus linear system theory, the task of bandwidth estimation is formulated as inferring an unknown bounding function from measurements of probing traffic. We present derivations showing that simply using the expected value of the available bandwidth in networks with random service leads to a systematic overestimation of the traffic departures. Furthermore, we show that in a multihop setting with random service at each node, available bandwidth estimates requires observations over (in principle infinitely) long time periods. We propose a new estimation method for random service that is based on iterative constant-rate probes that take advantage of statistical methods. We show how our estimation method can be realized to achieve both good accuracy and confidence levels. We evaluate our method for wired single-and multihop networks, as well as for wireless networks.