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A High TCP Performance Rate Adaptation Algorithm for IEEE 802.11 Networks

Author(s): Kehao Zhang | Alvin Lim | Shaoen Wu | Qing Yang

Journal: International Journal of Computer Networks & Communications
ISSN 0975-2293

Volume: 2;
Issue: 6;
Start page: 31;
Date: 2010;
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Keywords: IEEE 802.11 | Rate Adaptation | ARA Algorithm

Rate adaptation is a link layer mechanism critical to the system performance by exploiting the multipletransmission rates provided by current IEEE 802.11 WLANs. The key challenge for designing such analgorithm is how to select the most appropriate transmission rate under different environments. The firstgeneration rate adaptation schemes perform poorly in a collision dominant environment because they donot differentiate frame losses caused by collision from channel degradation. The second generationschemes use RTS/CTS control frames to differentiate frame losses. However, introducing the overheadmay lower network performance especially when the data frame size is small. This paper gives severalguidelines on how to design an efficient rate adaptation scheme and proposes an algorithm calledAdvanced Rate Adaptation Algorithm (ARA). ARA is implemented along with four other representativerate adaptation schemes on a Linux-based testbed. Experiment results show that ARA outperforms otherrate adaptation schemes in most scenarios.
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