Congestion Control in the RFC Series
RFC 5783

Document Type RFC - Informational (February 2010; Errata)
Last updated 2015-10-14
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Internet Research Task Force (IRTF)                             M. Welzl
Request for Comments: 5783                            University of Oslo
Category: Informational                                          W. Eddy
ISSN: 2070-1721                                              MTI Systems
                                                           February 2010

                  Congestion Control in the RFC Series

Abstract

   This document is an informational snapshot taken by the IRTF's
   Internet Congestion Control Research Group (ICCRG) in October 2008.
   It provides a survey of congestion control topics described by
   documents in the RFC series.  This does not modify or update the
   specifications or status of the RFC documents that are discussed.  It
   may be used as a reference or starting point for the future work of
   the research group, especially in noting gaps or open issues in the
   current IETF standards.

Status of This Memo

   This document is not an Internet Standards Track specification; it is
   published for informational purposes.

   This document is a product of the Internet Research Task Force
   (IRTF).  The IRTF publishes the results of Internet-related research
   and development activities.  These results might not be suitable for
   deployment.  This RFC represents the consensus of the Internet
   Congestion Control Research Group of the Internet Research Task Force
   (IRTF).  Documents approved for publication by the IRSG are not a
   candidate for any level of Internet Standard; see Section 2 of RFC
   5741.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at
   http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc5783.

Welzl & Eddy                  Informational                     [Page 1]
RFC 5783                 Congestion Control RFCs           February 2010

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2010 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (http://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  3
   2.  Architectural Documents  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  5
   3.  TCP Congestion Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  9
   4.  Challenging Link and Path Characteristics  . . . . . . . . . . 10
   5.  End-Host and Router Cooperative Signaling  . . . . . . . . . . 12
     5.1.  Explicit Congestion Notification . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
     5.2.  Quick-Start  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
   6.  Non-TCP Unicast Congestion Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
   7.  Multicast Congestion Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
   8.  Guidance for Developing and Analyzing Congestion Control
       Techniques . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
   9.  Historic Interest  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
   10. Security Considerations  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
   11. Acknowledgements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
   12. Informative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Welzl & Eddy                  Informational                     [Page 2]
RFC 5783                 Congestion Control RFCs           February 2010

1.  Introduction

   In this document, we define congestion control as the feedback-based
   adjustment of the rate at which data is sent into the network.
   Congestion control is an indispensable set of principles and
   mechanisms for maintaining the stability of the Internet.  Congestion
   control has been closely associated with TCP since 1988 [Jac88], but
   there has also been a great deal of congestion control work outside
   of TCP (e.g., for real-time multimedia applications, multicast, and
   router-based mechanisms).  Several such proposals have been produced
   within the IETF and published as RFCs, along with RFCs that give
   architectural guidance (e.g., by pointing out the importance of
   performing some form of congestion control).  Several of these
   mechanisms are in use within the Internet.

   When designing a new Internet transport protocol, it is therefore
   important to not only understand how congestion control works in TCP
   but also have a broader understanding of the other congestion control
   RFCs -- some give guidance, some of them describe mechanisms that may
   have a direct influence on a newly designed protocol, and some of
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