WPI (Worcester Polytechnic Institute)

Computer Science Department

Congestion Control for Streaming Media

Jae Won Chung

Committee: Professor Mark Claypool (WPI), Professor Robert Kinicki (WPI), Professor Craig Wills (WPI), and Professor Kevin Jeffay (UNC)

Ph.D. Thesis
Computer Science Department, WPI
Summer 2005


The Internet has assumed the role of the underlying communication network for applications such as file transfer, electronic mail, Web browsing and multimedia streaming. Multimedia streaming, in particular, is growing with the growth in power and connectivity of today's computers. These Internet applications have a variety of network service requirements and traffic characteristics, which presents new challenges to the single best-effort service of today's Internet. TCP, the de facto Internet transport protocol, has been successful in satisfying the needs of traditional Internet applications, but fails to satisfy the increasingly popular delay sensitive multimedia applications. Streaming applications often use UDP without a proper congestion avoidance mechanisms, threatening the well-being of the Internet.

This dissertation presents an IP router traffic management mechanism, referred to as Crimson, that can be seamlessly deployed in the current Internet to protect well-behaving traffic from misbehaving traffic and support Quality of Service (QoS) requirements of delay sensitive multimedia applications as well as traditional Internet applications. In addition, as a means to enhance Internet support for multimedia streaming, this dissertation report presents design and evaluation of a TCP-Friendly and streaming-friendly transport protocol called the Multimedia Transport Protocol (MTP). Through a simulation study this report shows the Crimson network efficiently handles network congestion and minimizes queuing delay while providing affordable fairness protection from misbehaving flows over a wide range of traffic conditions. In addition, our results show that MTP offers streaming performance comparable to that provided by UDP, while doing so under a TCP-Friendly rate.