Sharing the cost of backbone networks: Cui bono?

Laszlo Gyarmati, Rade Stanojevic, Michael Sirivianos, Nikolaos Laoutaris

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We study the problem of how to share the cost of a backbone network among its customers. A variety of empirical cost-sharing policies are used in practice by backbone network operators but very little ever reaches the research literature about their properties. Motivated by this, we present a systematic study of such policies focusing on the discrepancies between their cost allocations. We aim at quantifying how the selection of a particular policy biases an operator's understanding of cost generation. We identify F-discrepancies due to the specific function used to map traffic into cost (e.g., volume vs. peak rate vs. 95-percentile) and M-discrepancies, which have to do with where traffic is metered (per device vs. ingress metering). We also identify L-discrepancies relating to the liability of individual customers for triggered upgrades and consequent costs (full vs. proportional), and finally, TCO-discrepancies emanating from the fact that the cost of carrying a bit is not uniform across the network (old vs. new equipment, high vs. low energy or real estate costs, etc.). Using extensive traffic, routing, and cost data from a tier-1 network we show that F-discrepancies are large when looking at individual links but cancel out when considering network-wide cost-sharing. Metering at ingress points is convenient but leads to large M-discrepancies, while TCO-discrepancies are huge. Finally, L-discrepancies are intriguing and esoteric but understanding them is central to determining the cost a customer inflicts on the network.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIMC 2012 - Proceedings of the ACM Internet Measurement Conference
Pages509-522
Number of pages14
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Dec 2012
Event2012 ACM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC 2012 - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: 14 Nov 201216 Nov 2012

Publication series

NameProceedings of the ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC

Other

Other2012 ACM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC 2012
CountryUnited States
CityBoston, MA
Period14/11/1216/11/12

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Keywords

  • backbone network
  • cost sharing
  • fairness
  • network economics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Networks and Communications

Cite this

Gyarmati, L., Stanojevic, R., Sirivianos, M., & Laoutaris, N. (2012). Sharing the cost of backbone networks: Cui bono? In IMC 2012 - Proceedings of the ACM Internet Measurement Conference (pp. 509-522). (Proceedings of the ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference, IMC). https://doi.org/10.1145/2398776.2398830