``Delving into Internet streaming media delivery: a quality and
resource utilization perspective"

Lei Guo, Enhua Tan, Songqing Chen, Zhen Xiao, Oliver Spatscheck, and
Xiaodong Zhang

Proceedings of ACM SIGCOMM Internet Measurement Conference (IMC'06),
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, October 25-27, 2006.


Modern Internet streaming services have utilized various techniques to improve 
the quality of streaming media delivery. Despite the characterization of media 
access patterns and user behaviors in many measurement studies, few studies 
have focused on the streaming techniques themselves, particularly on the 
quality of streaming experiences they offer end users and on the resources of 
the media systems that they consume. In order to gain insights into current 
streaming services and thus provide guidance on designing resource-efficient 
and high quality streaming media systems, we have collected a large streaming 
media workload from thousands of broadband home users and business users 
hosted by a major ISP, and analyzed the most commonly used streaming 
techniques such as automatic protocol switch, Fast Streaming, MBR encoding 
and rate adaptation. Our measurement and analysis results show that with 
these techniques, current streaming systems tend to over-utilize CPU and 
bandwidth resources to provide better services to end users, which may not be 
a desirable and effective way to improve the quality of streaming media 
delivery. Motivated by these results, we propose and evaluate a coordination 
mechanism that effectively takes advantage of both Fast Streaming and rate 
adaptation to better utilize the server and Internet resources for streaming 
quality improvement.