The Synchronization of Periodic Routing Messages

TitleThe Synchronization of Periodic Routing Messages
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1994
AuthorsFloyd, S., & Jacobson V.
Published inIEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking
Other Numbers1625

The paper considers a network with many apparently-independent periodic processes and discusses one method by which these processes can inadvertently become synchronized. In particular, we study the synchronization of periodic routing messages, and offer guidelines on how to avoid inadvertent synchronization. Using simulations and analysis, we study the process of synchronization and show that the transition from unsynchronized to synchronized traffic is not one of gradual degradation but is instead a very abrupt 'phase transition': in general, the addition of a single router will convert a completely unsynchronized traffic stream into a completely synchronized one. We show that synchronization can be avoided by the addition of randomization to the traffic sources and quantify how much randomization is necessary. In addition, we argue that the inadvertent synchronization of periodic processes is likely to become an increasing problem in computer networks.

Bibliographic Notes

IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking, Vol. 2, No. 2, pp. 122-136

Abbreviated Authors

S. Floyd and V. Jacobson

ICSI Research Group

Networking and Security

ICSI Publication Type

Article in journal or magazine