Abm: Active buffer management in datacenters

Vamsi Addanki, Maria Apostolaki, Manya Ghobadi, Stefan Schmid, Laurent Vanbever

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

19 Scopus citations


Today's network devices share buffer across queues to avoid drops during transient congestion and absorb bursts. As the buffer-per-bandwidth-unit in datacenter decreases, the need for optimal buffer utilization becomes more pressing. Typical devices use a hierarchical packet admission control scheme: First, a Buffer Management (BM) scheme decides the maximum length per queue at the device level and then an Active Queue Management (AQM) scheme decides which packets will be admitted at the queue level. Unfortunately, the lack of cooperation between the two control schemes leads to (i) harmful interference across queues, due to the lack of isolation; (ii) increased queueing delay, due to the obliviousness to the per-queue drain time; and (iii) thus unpredictable burst tolerance. To overcome these limitations, we propose ABM, Active Buffer Management which incorporates insights from both BM and AQM. Concretely, ABM accounts for both total buffer occupancy (typically used by BM) and queue drain time (typically used by AQM). We analytically prove that ABM provides isolation, bounded buffer drain time and achieves predictable burst tolerance without sacrificing throughput. We empirically find that ABM improves the 99th percentile FCT for short flows by up to 94% compared to the state-of-The-Art buffer management. We further show that ABM improves the performance of advanced datacenter transport protocols in terms of FCT by up to 76% compared to DCTCP, TIMELY and PowerTCP under bursty workloads even at moderate load conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSIGCOMM 2022 - Proceedings of the ACM SIGCOMM 2022 Conference
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9781450394208
StatePublished - Aug 22 2022
Event2022 Conference of the ACM Special Interest Group on Data Communication, SIGCOMM 2022 - Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: Aug 22 2022Aug 26 2022

Publication series

NameSIGCOMM 2022 - Proceedings of the ACM SIGCOMM 2022 Conference


Conference2022 Conference of the ACM Special Interest Group on Data Communication, SIGCOMM 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Hardware and Architecture


  • buffer management
  • datacenter
  • queue management
  • shared buffer


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