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Loss Differentiation and Recovery in TCP Over Wireless Wide-Area Networks

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Executive Summary

The increasing speed and coverage of Wireless Wide Area Networks (WWAN) has made technologies such as GPRS, UMTS, or HSDPA a popular way to access the Internet for both mobile and stationary users. However, depending on the scenario, WWAN can suffer from severe IP packet loss due to corruption, which is mistaken by TCP as an indication of path congestion. This paper presents an approach to solve the loss differentiation problem for the widespread scenario of wireless networks being used as access networks to the Internet. The authors' solution allows TCP to distinguish between congestion and corruption loss and to properly react to both phenomena.

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