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Long-term Streaming Media Server Workload Analysis and Modeling

Tang, Wenting; Fu, Yun; Cherkasova, Ludmila; Vahdat, Amin


Keyword(s): enterprise media servers; workload analysis; long-term trends analysis; performance modeling; synthetic workload generator

Abstract: Currently, Internet hosting centers and content distribution networks leverage statistical multiplexing to meet the performance requirements of a number of competing hosted network services. Developing efficient resource allocation mechanisms for such services requires an understanding of both the short-term and long-term behavior of client access patterns to these competing services. At the same time, streaming media services are becoming increasingly popular, presenting new challenges for designers of shared hosting services. These new challenges result from fundamentally new characteristics of streaming media relative to traditional web objects, principally different client access patterns and significantly larger computational and bandwidth overhead associated with a streaming request. To understand the characteristics of these new workloads we use two long-term traces of streaming media services to develop MediSyn, a publicly available streaming media workload generator. In summary, this paper makes the following contributions: i) we model the long-term behavior of network services capturing the process of file introduction and changing file popularity, ii) we present a novel generalized Zipf-like distribution that captures recently-observed popularity of both web objects and streaming media not captured by existing Zipf-like distributions, and iii) we capture a number of characteristics unique to streaming media services, including file duration, encoding bit rate, session duration and non-stationary popularity of media accesses.

21 Pages

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