Evaluation of free-riding traffic problem in overlay routing and its mitigation method

Go Hasegawa, Yuichiro Hiraoka, Masayuki Murata

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Recent research on overlay networks has revealed that user-perceived network performance could be improved by an overlay routing mechanism. The effectiveness of overlay routing is mainly a result of the policy mismatch between the overlay routing and the underlay IP routing operated by ISPs. However, this policy mismatch causes a "free-riding" traffic problem, which may become harmful to the cost structure of Internet Service Providers. In the present paper, we define the free-riding problem in the overlay routing and evaluate the degree of free-riding traffictore-veal the effect of the problem on ISPs. We introduce a numerical metric to evaluate the degree of the free-riding problem and confirm that most multi-hop overlay paths that have better performance than the direct path brings the free-riding problem. We also discuss the guidelines for selecting paths that are more effective than the direct path and that mitigate the free-riding problem.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3774-3783
Number of pages10
JournalIEICE Transactions on Communications
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Available bandwidth
  • End-to-end delay
  • Free-riding traffic
  • Overlay networks
  • Overlay routing
  • TCP throughput


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