Efficient and Highly Available Peer Discovery: A Case for Independent Trackers and Gossipping

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Executive Summary

Tracker-based peer-discovery is used in most commercial peer-to-peer content distribution systems, as it provides performance benefits compared to distributed solutions, and facilitates the control and monitoring of the overlay. But a tracker is a central point of failure, and its deployment and maintenance incur costs; hence an important question is how high tracker availability can be achieved at low cost. The authors investigate highly available, low overhead peer discovery, using independent trackers and a simple gossip protocol. This work is a step towards understanding the trade-off between the overhead and the achievable peer connectivity in highly available distributed overlay-management systems for peer-to-peer content distribution.

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