Pushing Politely: Improving Web Responsiveness One Packet at a Time

B. D. Davison and V. Liberatore
Technical Report (20 pages)
Postscript (1.5MB) PDF (212KB)


The rapid growth of traffic on the World-Wide Web results in heavier loads on networks and servers and in increased latency experienced while retrieving web documents. This paper presents a framework that exploits idle periods to satisfy future HTTP requests speculatively and opportunistically. Our proposal differs from previous schemes in that speculative dissemination always gives precedence to on-demand traffic, uses ranged requests for improved performance, and can be implemented over a connectionless transport. The protocol uses bounded and little server state even as the workload was increased and it is resistant to erroneous estimates of available bandwidth. Substantial latency improvements are reported over pure on-demand strategies.

Technical Report DCS-TR-415, Department of Computer Science, Rutgers University, June 2000.

An shorter version of this paper is available as an extended abstract for a workshop.

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Last modified: 20 July 2001
Brian D. Davison