[e2e] Packet reordering in Internet

Detlef Bosau detlef.bosau at web.de
Tue Aug 25 06:39:56 PDT 2009

Per Hurtig (work) wrote:
> I know that TCP is sorting incoming packets, I should have specified
> my question better :) What I was wondering is if packets are more
> likely to be reordered in data centers than in the regular Internet,
> due to the specific architecture of data centers.
> For instance, I've seen papers that argue that packet reordering is
> more prevalent in high-speed environments, e.g. [1], and data centers
> would likely belong to this type of environment.
> [1] "Packet reordering in high-speed networks and its impact on
> high-speed TCP variants". Feng, Jie and Ouyang, Zhipeng and Xu, Lisong
> and Ramamurthy, Byrav. In Computer Communications 32(1), pp. 62-68,
> January 2009.

Unfortunately, I did not yet read this paper. However, I don't think 
that a high network throughput alone will cause packet reordering. 
Nevertheless, excessive traffic shaping using numerous buffers, token 
buckets and leaky buckets may lead
to packet reordering. I still do not really know, e.g., how things like 
"committed information rate" and the like are implemented in Frame 
Relay, so it could be worthwhile to have a look at these things in 
practical networks.

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