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SCTP: An innovative transport layer protocol for the web

  • Preethi Natarajan, Protocol Engineering Lab, CIS Dept University of Delaware, USA
  • Janardhan R. Iyengar, Protocol Engineering Lab, CIS Dept University of Delaware, USA
  • Paul. D. Amer, Protocol Engineering Lab, CIS Dept University of Delaware, USA
  • Randall Stewart, Internet Technologies Division Cisco Systems, USA

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Track: Performance, Reliability and Scalability

We propose using the Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP), a recent IETF transport layer protocol, for reliable web transport. Although TCP has traditionally been used, we argue that SCTP better matches the needs of HTTP-based network applications. This position paper discusses SCTP features that address: (i) head-of-line blocking within a single TCP connection, (ii) vulnerability to network failures, and (iii) vulnerability to denial-of-service SYN attacks. We discuss our experience in modifying the Apache server and the Firefox browser to benefit from SCTP, and demonstrate our HTTP over SCTP design via simple experiments. We also discuss the benefits of using SCTP in other web domains through two example scenarios - multiplexing user requests, and multiplexing resource access. Finally, we highlight several SCTP features that will be valuable to the design and implementation of current HTTP-based client-server applications.

Citation

Natarajan, P., Iyengar, J. R., Amer, P. D., and Stewart, R. 2006. SCTP: an innovative transport layer protocol for the web. In Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on World Wide Web (Edinburgh, Scotland, May 23 - 26, 2006). WWW '06. ACM Press, New York, NY, 615-624.
DOI= http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1135777.1135867

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