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P2P vs. ISP. Ofir Israel Guy Paskar. An Internet Tale. Once upon a time.. Users unhappy (slow connection) ISPs unhappy (poor revenues) Then came Broadband access... And everybody were happy. The Villain arrives. P2P File-Sharing Applications (Kazaa, eMule, BitTorrent, etc..)

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p2p vs isp

P2P vs. ISP

Ofir Israel

Guy Paskar

an internet tale
An Internet Tale
  • Once upon a time..
    • Users unhappy (slow connection)
    • ISPs unhappy (poor revenues)
  • Then came Broadband access...
  • And everybody were happy
the villain arrives
The Villain arrives
  • P2P File-Sharing Applications (Kazaa,

eMule, BitTorrent, etc..)

  • Users love it!
    • Good and free content, overnight downloads
  • ISPs hate it!
    • Users using their entire link
    • Internet link utilization gone wild
    • More bandwidth costs more money!
but is it really a villain
But is it really a villain?
  • Users love it
  • Driving force for broadband adoption
  • Increased revenues for ISPs
  • What should the ISPs do??
some ideas
Some Ideas
  • User friendly ideas
    • Acquire more BW
    • Network caching
  • User unfriendly ideas
    • Increase subscription cost
    • Volume-based pricing
    • Block/shape P2P traffic (priority for non-P2P packets)
  • Generally understand the problem – DONE! (? )
  • Describe an analytical model to help us understand situation better
  • Describe one practical solution and it’s empirical results (Hint: it works)
research goals
Research Goals
  • Modeling framework to analyze interactions between P2P File-Sharing users and their ISPs
  • Basic insight about system dynamics
  • Used to evaluate different strategies to manage P2P traffic
meet the players
Meet the Players
  • User
    • Generates queries (P2P application finds the object and retrieves it)
    • Pays a subscription price, has QoS expectations
    • What’s popular, what’s not
  • ISP
    • Goal: TO MAKE MONEY
    • Sets subscription price
    • Controls bandwidth
    • Influences P2P app behavior
system setting
System Setting

N users in the world

n users inside ISP

User-ISP ul., dl. bandwidth

ISP-ISP ul., dl. bandwidth

User generates query

Gets a response from within the ISP

Or from a user in another ISP

the simple system model
The Simple System Model

Unconstrained downloads from within the ISP

Prob. Object is located inside ISP

Prob. P2P App. locates object

Aggregate query rate

Average query rate

System throughput

Model for “Internet to ISP” link

Object retrieval prob. (QoS):

user utility function
User Utility Function



Subscription cost

Shape parameter

Object retrieval prob.

Users subscribe only if:

Equivalently, if:

is the minimal service level acceptable by user i

isp utility function
ISP Utility Function

Fixed cost



Cost per unit of BW

Revenues from subscribers’ fee

ISP starts service only if:

traffic locality
Traffic Locality
  • Probability that there exists at least one internal replica of object replicated r times in the system
  • Probability to download from internal replica

Number of files inside ISP

Number of files outside ISP

Locality parameter

minimum bw
Minimum BW
  • Reminder:
  • So:
  • Assuming
  • We get
minimum bw1
Minimum BW
  • Non-linear behavior (on n)
    • More users  more locality  less BW needed
    • Can be zero if n large enough (self-sustainability)
  • Dependant on multiple parameters
  • Self-Sustainability
impact of object replication r
Impact of Object Replication (r)
  • More replicas  Better locality  Lower Bd needed
  • Bmin has two roots: x1 – No users, x2 – Enough users for self-sustainability
impact of external qos
Impact of external QoS ( )
  • Higher external QoS More BW needed (because there are more replicas externally)
impact of prob to locate objects q
Impact of prob. to locate objects (q)
  • Some ISPs drop queries. This graph shows them different.
impact of prob to retrieve objects internally gamma
Impact of prob. to retrieve objects internally (Gamma)
  • Det. by the ability to find a local object given that it exists.
  • Can be influenced by the ISP – this graph shows it should.
model refinements
Model Refinements
  • Refined Model
    • Relax these assumptions
    • Propose object popularity and replication model
  • Simple Model
    • Users’ access BW are unconstrained
    • Object popularity is identical
    • Users availability identical
model refinements1
Model Refinements
  • We adopt a processor sharing model with rate limit bd to describe the sharing of Bd

Now each user is limited by it’s own BW.

Queue Model

model refinements2
Model Refinements
  • We introduce a new parameter: that describes user patience
  • Denote b as the initial download rate, and assuming the decision to abort is made at the beginning then the prob. pg to continue the transfer is:
  • Larger eta  user claims to get a rate close to what they paid for
b min as a function of b d b u with different values of gamma
Bmin as a function of bd=bu with different values of gamma
  • Higher gamma  smaller bu needed for self-sustainability
  • Optimal gamma is not gamma=1 !!!
  • For bu < 250 the BW available inside the ISP is not enough to satisfy demanding users
impact of asymmetric access bws
Impact of asymmetric access BWs
  • Cost for ISP increases as ratio increases (what about ADSL??)
  • Larger bu Better locality  lower Bd
  • Locality is good for the ISPs
  • More replicas, larger querying probability, larger upload bandwidth for users’ access, larger probability to retrieve objects internally (gamma)  SELF SUSTAINABILITY == GOOD
  • Reading slow leads to better understanding 
further reading
Further Reading
  • Original paper of course:

Garetto et al, “A modeling framework to understand the tussle between ISPs and peer-to-peer file-sharing users” in PerformanceEvaluation, June 2007

  • Same as the original paper but talks about ISP-ISP connections:

Wang et al, “Modeling the Peering and Routing Tussle between ISPs and P2P Applications” in the proceedings of IWQoS 2006

academic work
Academic Work
  • Oracle-based vs. non-Oracle-based (e.g., with ISP cooperation or without)
    • Legality issues, reluctance issues
  • Improvements via locality research
    • Network location or Geographic location?
    • Which method of network location?
  • Improvements via redirection research
    • Can we redirect traffic to inexpensive links?
  • Many more
part 2
Part 2

Taming the Torrent - A Practical Approach to Reducing Cross-ISP Traffic in Peer-to-Peer Systems

David R. Choffnes and Fabián E. Bustamante

the problem
The problem
  • Over 66% of P2P users & growing
  • But how do we know which peer to choose?
  • Which peers? Trackers provide a random subset of peers in the torrent
  • Random peer connections → growing ISP operation costs.
    • So , how do we know if a suggested peer is inside our Isp or outside?
    • We want to reduce cross isp transport. Meaning use the “closest” peers.
    • But , how can we do that?
the isp perspective
The ISP Perspective
  • P2P performance - key factor for service upgrade & selection by users
  • A major engineering challenge for ISPs
    • ≈70% of the Internet traffic
  • But , a lot of cross isp ,means a lot of cost for the Isp.
  • What can the isp do in order to fight the p2p users?
isp methods and its problems
Isp methods and its problems
  • ISPs shape traffic directed to standard ports
    • P2Ps move to dynamic, non-standard ports
  • ISPs turn to deep-packet inspection to identify & shape P2P flows
    • P2Ps encrypt their connections
  • ISPs place caches and/or spoofs TCP RST msgs
    • Legality issues. (Some ways to overcome this – in Israel!)

So good solution must be agreed by the p2p users!

one solution oracles
One solution: Oracles.
  • Suggestion – the isp’s itself will have to implement an oracle, this oracles will guide the user which peers to choose.
    • Help reduce cross-ISP traffic
  • This solution looks appealing But:
    • Assumes P2P users & ISPs trust each other
    • Misses incentive for user adoption
    • Therefore not so good after all
the authors suggestion
The authors suggestion
  • CDN’S – content distribution network. What is it?
    • CDNs attempt to improve web performance by redirecting requests to replica servers
    • The goal is to help content providers (i.e. CNN) to distribute content by redirecting requests to replica servers that are:
      • Topologically proximate
      • Provide lower-latency
  • But how do they do that?
how does cdn work
How does CDN work?
  • There are some ways that a CDN works by for example:
  • Way 1 : I want to go to cnn.com  dns lookup , directs me to the domain name of the CDN(cnn.akamai.com) CDN sends me to the right replica.
  • Way 2: I want to go to cnn.com dns lookup  first page from original cnn.com, directs me to CDN server  sends to right replica.
reusing cdns network views
Reusing CDNs’ network views
  • Client’s request redirected to “nearby” server
    • Client gets web site’s DNS CNAME entry with domain name in CDN network
    • Hierarchy of CDN’s DNS servers direct client to nearby servers

Multiple redirections to find nearby edge servers

Hierarchy of CDN DNS servers


Customer DNS servers

Web replica servers


Another web client


Clients and replica servers are “nearby”]




Client is given 2 web replica servers (fault tolerance)

Client gets CNAME entry with domain name in Akamai



Client requests translation for Yahoo

Web client

the authors suggestion1
The authors suggestion
  • So how do we use CDN?
  • We are going to recycle data that is already being collected by Content Distribution Networks, and use it.
  • But how?
  • By simply comparing DNS redirections.
  • Assumptions :
    • Links between “nearby” hosts cross few ISPs
    • If two hosts are close to the same CDN replica servers, they are close to each other
reducing cross isp traffic
Reducing cross-ISP traffic
  • So we can use the CDN’s data, what are the advantages for this recycilng?
    • Does not requires any trust between isp and p2p users
    • The infrastructure is already exist
    • And most importantly reduces cross isp traffic without harming the p2p users (even improving)
an approach to reducing cross isp
An approach to reducing cross isp
  • Introducing “Ono”
      • Extension (plugin) to AzureusBitTorrent client
      • Will use CDN and ratio maps(?) to determine who is “closer”
      • We will describe its implementation
    • Uses multiple CDN customers
      • Only DNS resolution, no content download needed
      • Adaptive lookup rates on CDN names
      • Represent redirection behavior using ratio-maps
ratio maps
Ratio Maps
  • A ratio map represents the frequency of redirecting to a specific replica
  • Number of replicas is usually small (max 31)
  • Keep a time window about 24 hours
  • How does it looks?
ratio maps represantation
Ratio maps represantation
  • The ratio map of a peer (a) is a set of (replica server, ratio)
    • for peer a
    • Specifically, if peer a is redirected toward replica server r1 75% of the time window, and toward replica server r2 25% of the time window, then the corresponding ratio-map is
    • The sum of all in a given ratio map equals one
    • For each peer there exist a ratio map
    • But what can we do with it?
choosing peers by ratio map
choosing peers by ratio map
  • 2 peers has close ratio map , than we say that they are close. ( possibly in the same network), and the ooposit
  • So , we need a calculation that will determine for 2 peers if they are “close” or not.
    • Than we can check for all available peers and choose the “closest” one
    • For that we define cosine similarity for 2 peers
cosine similarity
  • the cosine similarity of two maps will range from 0 to 1, since the term frequencies cannot be negative
  • If cos_sim(a,b) = 0 , the vectors are orthogonal
  • if cos_sim(a,b) = 1 than they are the same
  • This is very close to dot product
  • And we determine a threshold currently 0.15 , if cos_sim(a,b)>0.15 than we recommend these peers as close
  • Ono, an extension to Azureusclient
  • Performs periodic DNS lookups on popular CDN and create a ratio map
      • Periodically updates the ratio-maps
    • Exchanging ratio maps for cos-sim(a,b):
      • On Handshake
      • From trackers
      • But how do we deal with peers not using Ono?
      • Ono also attempts to perform DNS lookups on behalf of other peers that it encounters, to determine their ratio maps
      • How?
        • Taken from Ono code : getting the other peer DNS server
        • And querying it
so what s now
So what's now?
  • Get ratio information from other peers that got from tracker , and understand who is close
    • When determine similar redirection behavior, attempts to bias traffic towards that peer by ensuring that the connection is always on
  • Sends Ono information to supporting trackers(in case of supporting trackers)
  • But what is the cost? How much is our overhead?
    • 18KB upstream, 36KB downstream per day
    • Computation of cosine-similarity is easy
important notes
Important notes
  • CDN names being used:
  • Initialization of ratio map:
    • DNS on each CDN name at most once every 30 sec. for 2 min. this gives basis ratio map
    • After this phase
      • If the redirection info for CDN name similar to prev. query  the interval between queries increases by 1 min.
      • Otherwise the interval is halved(to a min. of 30 sec.)
some statistics regarding ono
Some statistics regarding Ono
  • Details for 2007 :
  • > 195,000 users worldwide
  • … collecting ~15GB of data per day
empirical results
Empirical results
  • Over 120,000 peers use Ono
  • Ono collects extra network data
    • Samples transfer rates for each connection every 5 sec.
    • Get RTT for endpoint using pings
    • Get Trace-route between end points
      • Note :
      • Not easy to determine cross-ISP hops
      • IP hops is easy and gives some measure
empirical resualts
Empirical resualts
  • So in practice Trace Route gives a router level views of path between hosts. BUT an ISP can contain many routers, we wish for a metric that is closely correspond to ISP hops.
  • How do we get this metric?
  • Autonomous systems , how?
  • Although there is no 1 to 1 correlation between AS and ISPs, the number of AS hops gives us an upper bound estimate on the number of cross-ISP hops
  • So in practice we generate AS level path info from our trace-routes using mapping that can be provided
  • Example :
empirical results1
Empirical results
  • Ono finds shorter paths
  • Median in less than half
  • More than 20% are only one hopaway, via less than 2%
reducing cross isp traffic1
Reducing cross-ISP traffic
  • Average number of AS hops to reach Ono-recommended/random peers

> 30% of paths to Ono-recommended peers do not leave the AS of origin

Note BT curve includes all peers, either Ono-recommended or randomly selected

finding nearby peers
Finding nearby peers

Two orders of magnitude difference

And, on average, 31% lower loss rates!

improving transfer performance
Improving transfer performance

Heavy Tail – Average performance improves by 31%

DSL in England -- 4/8Mbps down, only 768Kbps up

ISP bandwidth allocation policy brings bottleneck to the access link

Median difference is ~2KB/s

Even when Ono doesn’t help, it allows BT to naturally select faster peers

with the right bandwidth allocation policy
… with the right bandwidth allocation policy
  • Romania: 50 Mb/s in metro-area, 4 Mb/s outside

883% median improvement

  • Absolute network positioning system , and just throw away the “far” peers
    • Problem – all peers must take a part in the service, in contrast to our method
  • Use just AS numbers
    • There are ISPs (like comcast) that have many AS numbers, so using these numbers can restrict cross-AS traffic that is not cross-ISP traffic
  • Recycling network views collected by CDNs
    • The method reduces cross-ISP traffic
    • Performance of peers is not effected(we saw this)
    • Scalable (the more clients adopt it, the more accurate the bias would get)
    • Available easily and freely
    • Therefore the method is good and can provide good results in reducing Cross-ISP traffic