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Experimental measurement campaigns have demonstrated that the classical Poissonian Model does not represent adequately the real characteristics of data traffic in local, metropolitan and geographical networks. In particular, in experimental results, self-similarity and long-range dependence have been observed on various protocol stack layers and in different network contexts. In order to model this experimental evidence, mathematical traffic models based on fractal, multi-fractal and and generically fractionary noise have been studied.

It is impressive the impact that these novel findings have on network engineering and on the classical paradigms for network design and performance evaluation. It is worth noting the scientific and engineering importance of these models that, by modelling the real traffic features in today multi-service networks, allow to estimate more accurately the system behavior and consequently achieve more efficient network dimensioning.
In short, this project aims at significantly contributing to new scientific achievement in this research field, achieving, by one side, a deeper knowledge of multi-service data traffic characteristics, and, on the other side, providing the research novel analytical instruments and experimental data, available in a public domain archive. Secondarily, we will evaluate how to exploit these traffic measurements as central element of new and improved network control and management procedures.
In the following we give some further detail about our objectives.
1) Collection and analysis of experimental data in multi-service packet networks, on backbone links (STM-16 and Gigabit Ethernet) and in WiFi radio access network, both in laboratory and public structures and making a differentiation by protocols (TCP, IP and MAC) and services (www, peer-to-peer and real-time streaming video and voice).
2) Realization of a public domain archive containing experimental data (www server), to make results available for a long time and shared also among external groups.
3) Study and development of novel mathematical tools for traffic analysis and parametric synthesis of pseudo-random traces.
4) Development of traffic measurement hardware and software tools, in the network (TCP/IP traffic), access (MAC) and physical layers.
5) Development of modules for data traffic collection in order to provide automated access control and resource allocation functions in an open-source platform.
Experimental measurements will be carried on in collaboration with GARR, the consortium for the Italian University and Scientific Research Network, and FASTWEB, a private operator offering advanced data, video and voice services on IP network.
POLIMI tasks will be mainly the coordination of project activities, the traffic measurements on backbone links, the study of novel analytical methods, the identification of models suitable to experimental results.
POLITO will be in charge to characterize TCP and real-time multimedia (VoIP, MPEG) traffic, both in wired and wireless WiFi networks. POLITO will also realize and maintain the project website, where experimental results and new tools will be made available.
UNIPI will evaluate the application of traffic results to advanced network control and management procedures, developing data collection modules for automatic access control and resource allocation on a open-source platform.
UNIPA will take in charge the experimental measurements in 802.11 mobile wireless networks, stating from data acquisition to data analysis, investigating problem of unfairness among stations and interaction problems among protocols in high layers and in MAC and physical layers.


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