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Last Updated: 16-July-1998

This is a dumping ground for performance related references. If none of the current project ideas interest you, start picking through some of these and see if lightning strikes.


These are "general purpose" references for inspiration and background reading with respect to network protocol tuning.

  • Hari Balakrishnan, Venkata N. Padmanabhan, Srinivasan Seshan, Mark Stemm, Randy H. Katz. TCP Behavior of a Busy Internet Server: Analysis and Improvements. Proceedings of IEEE Infocom, San Francisco, CA, USA, March 1998. (To appear). (You can also retrieve the full technical report). This paper presents an analysis of paper IBM's 1998 Olympics web site: they make a couple of recommendations for how to tweak and improve TCP on the server side for heavy loads.
  • HTTP Performance Overview. An analysis done by some people at W3C on HTTP performance, with particular empasis on the benefits of HTTP/1.1.
  • HTTP-NG. A proposal for a next-generation version of HTTP.
  • John M. Danskin, Geoffrey M. Davis, Xiyong Song. Fast Lossy Internet Image Transmission. ACM Multimedia 95, Electronic Proceedings. An alternative way to transfer image data.
  • RFC 793. Transmission Control Protocol Specification. Start here if you want to dive deep into the bowels of TCP tuning. Also recommended is TCP/IP Illustrated, Volume 1: The Protocols by W. Richard Stevens.
  • Internet Performance Measurement and Analysis (IPMA). This is a suite of academic tools that are currently being used on the MERIT network (associated with the University of Michigan) for IP performance analysis and tuning.
  • tcpdump, libpcap. These are a pair of low-level Unix utilities for tracing network packets. tcpdump is the user interface, libpcap is the back-end. For the curious, man page is available as PostScript.

OS-specific Tuning

These are references to conventional wisdom for tuning Winsock and other OS-related parameters.