Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Mark L. Claypool, Reader

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Robert Kininki, Advisor




Previous research on ECN and RED usually considered only a limited traffic domain, focusing on networks with a small number of homogeneous flows. The behavior of RED and ECN congestion control mechanisms in TCP network with many competing heterogeneous flows in the bottleneck link, hasn't been sufficiently explored. This thesis first investigates the behavior and performance of RED with ECN congestion control mechanisms with many heterogeneous TCP Reno flows using the network simulation tool, ns-2. By comparing the simulated performance of RED and ECN routers, this study finds that ECN does provide better goodput and fairness than RED for heterogeneous flows. However, when the demand is held constant, the number of flows generating the demand has a negative effect on performance. Meanwhile, the simulations with many flows demonstrate that the bottleneck router's marking probability must be aggressively increased to provide good ECN performance. Based on these simulation results, an Adaptive ECN algorithm (AECN) was studied to further improve the goodput and fairness of ECN. AECN divides all flows competing for a bottleneck into three flow groups, and deploys a different max for each flow group. Meanwhile, AECN also adjusts min for the robust flow group and max to get higher performance when the number of flows grows large. Furthermore, AECN uses mark-front strategy, instead of mark-tail strategy in standard ECN. A series of AECN simulations were run in ns-2. The simulations show clearly that AECN treats each flow fairer than ECN with the two fairness measurements: Jain's fairness index and visual max-min fairness. AECN has fewer packet drops and alleviates the lockout phenomenon and yields higher goodput than ECN.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name



Computer Science

Project Type


Date Accepted





AECN, Heterogeneous Flows, RED, ECN, Goodput, Fairness, TCP/IP (Computer network protocol), Routers (Computer networks), Queuing theory