Google Research

Poseidon: An Efficient Congestion Control using Deployable INT for Data Center Networks

NSDI (2023)


The difficulty in gaining visibility into the fine-time scale hop-level congestion state of networks has been a key challenge faced by congestion control protocols for decades. How-ever, the emergence of commodity switches supporting in-network telemetry (INT) enables more advanced congestion control. In this paper, we presentPoseidon, a novel congestion control protocol that exploits INT to address blind spots of end-to-end algorithms and realize several fundamentally advantageous properties. Specifically, Poseidon realizes congestion control for the actual bottleneck hop. In the steady state,Poseidon realizes network-wide max-min fair bandwidth al-location. Furthermore, Poseidon decouples the bandwidth fairness requirement from the traditional AIMD control law, making it possible for Poseidon to converge fast and smooth out bandwidth oscillations. Equally important, Poseidon is de-signed to be amenable to incremental brownfield deployment in networks that mix INT and non-INT switches. Our testbed and simulation experiments show that compared to a widely-deployed state-of-the-art non-INT protocol, Swift, Poseidon improves op latency up to 10x in some percentiles (61% in average), lowers fabric RTT by more than 50%, reduces congestion window ramp up time by 40% while decreasing the throughput variation for flows with small windows by 94%.Finally, it is robust to reverse-path and multi-hop congestion.

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