Protecting Download Traffic from Upload Traffic over Asymmetric Wireless Links

Hwangnam Kim, Woonghee Lee, Hyunsoon Kim, Hwantae Kim, Jaehyeuk Michael Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Many varied mobile device networks have been developed with the advancement of communication and network technologies. Cellular data networks are currently the most widely used, and the number of cellular network subscriptions has increased steadily. Most recent wireless access technologies employ asymmetric uplinks and downlinks because mobile subscribers usually download contents from the Internet. Therefore, most cellular network service providers allocate more bandwidth to downlinks than uplinks for mobile subscribers. However, this asymmetry can have unexpected influence on network performance, particularly TCP performance. When the uplink interface is congested, TCP ACK packets are delayed by TCP data packets on the uplink, causing considerable TCP retransmissions on the downlink channel. Thus, downlink bandwidth cannot be fully utilized, which results in significantly degraded downlink throughput. To resolve this problem, this paper proposes a feedback scheme, network traffic chunk regulator (NCR). We analyzed the aforementioned problem through the empirical study, and we designed and implemented NCR based on the analysis. NCR adaptively controls TCP according to the degree of link usage asymmetry. We evaluate NCR performance through simulations and experiments with real devices. We verify that the proposed scheme allows the downlink traffic to not interfere with the aggressive uplink traffic. Thus, NCR increases total link utilization and aggregated throughput significantly, without imposing additional overhead on base or mobile stations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1283420
JournalWireless Communications and Mobile Computing
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Hwangnam Kim et al.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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