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Performance Evaluation of Web Proxy Cache Replacement Policies

Arlitt, Martin; Friedrich, Richard; Jin, Tai


Keyword(s): World-Wide Web; performance evaluation; proxy caching; replacement policies; trace-driven simulation

Abstract: The continued growth of the World-Wide Web and the emergence of new end-user technologies such as cable modems necessitate the use of proxy caches to reduce latency, network traffic and Web server loads. In this paper we analyze the importance of different Web proxy workload characteristics in making good cache replacement decisions. We evaluate workload characteristics such as object size, recency of reference, frequency of reference, and turnover in the active set of objects. Trace-driven simulation is used to evaluate the effectiveness of various replacement policies for Web proxy caches. The extended duration of the trace (117 million requests collected over five months) allows long term side effects of replacement policies to be identified and quantified. Our results indicate that higher cache hit rates are achieved using size-based replacement policies. These policies store a large number of small objects in the cache, thus increasing the probability of an object being in the cache when requested. To achieve higher byte hit rates a few larger files must be retained in the cache. We found frequency-based policies to work best for this metric, as they keep the most popular files, regardless of size, in the cache. With either approach it is important that inactive objects be removed from the cache to prevent performance degradation due to pollution.

21 Pages

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