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On the Self-similar Nature of Ethernet Traffic (Extended Version)

By Will E. Leland, Murad S. Taqqu, Walter Willinger and Daniel V. Wilson


We demonstrate that Ethernet LAN traffic is statistically self-similar, that none of the commonly used traffic models is able to capture this fractal-like behavior, that such behavior has serious implications for the design, control, and analysis of high-speed, cell-based networks, and that aggregating streams of such traffic typically intensifies the self-similarity (“burstiness”) instead of smoothing it. Our conclusions are supported by a rigorous statistical analysis of hundreds of millions of high quality Ethernet traffic measurements collected between 1989 and 1992, coupled with a discussion of the underlying mathematical and statistical properties of self-similarity and their relationship with actual network behavior. We also present traffic models based on self-similar stochastic processes that provide simple, accurate, and realistic descriptions of traffic scenarios expected during B-ISDN deployment

Year: 1994
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