TCP congestion avoidance algorithm identification

Peng Yang, Juan Shao, Wen Luo, Lisong Xu, Jitender Deogun, Ying Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


The Internet has recently been evolving from homogeneous congestion control to heterogeneous congestion control. Several years ago, Internet traffic was mainly controlled by the traditional RENO, whereas it is now controlled by multiple different TCP algorithms, such as RENO, CUBIC, and Compound TCP (CTCP). However, there is very little work on the performance and stability study of the Internet with heterogeneous congestion control. One fundamental reason is the lack of the deployment information of different TCP algorithms. In this paper, we first propose a tool called TCP Congestion Avoidance Algorithm Identification (CAAI) for actively identifying the TCP algorithm of a remote Web server. CAAI can identify all default TCP algorithms (e.g., RENO, CUBIC, and CTCP) and most non-default TCP algorithms of major operating system families. We then present the CAAI measurement result of about 30$\,$000 Web servers. We found that only $3.31 \% \sim 14.47 \%$ of the Web servers still use RENO, 46.92% of the Web servers use BIC or CUBIC, and $14.5 \% \sim 25.66 \%$ of the Web servers use CTCP. Our measurement results show a strong sign that the majority of TCP flows are not controlled by RENO anymore, and a strong sign that the Internet congestion control has changed from homogeneous to heterogeneous.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2278271
Pages (from-to)1311-1324
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Heterogeneous congestion control
  • Internet measurement
  • TCP congestion control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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