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The capacity allocation paradox

By Asaf Baron, Ran Ginosar and Isaac Keslassy


Abstract — The Capacity Allocation Paradox (CAP) destabilizes a stable small-buffer network when a link capacity is increased. CAP is demonstrated in a basic 2x1 network topology. We show that it applies to fluid, wormhole and packet-switched networks, and prove that it applies to various scheduling algorithms such as fixed-priority, round-robin and exhaustive round-robin. Their capacity regions are modeled and surprising phenomena are described. For instance, once increasing a link capacity destabilizes a stable network, increasing it further to infinity might never restore stability. Further, we exhibit networks with arbitrarily tight link-capacity stability regions, in which any small deviation from an optimal link capacity might make the network unstable. Finally, we suggest ways to mitigate CAP, e.g. by using GPS scheduling. I

Year: 2009
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