On the Impact of Virtual Machine Overhead on TCP Performance

V. Rajasekaran, J. Martin, and J. Westall (USA)


Internetworking, Network Performance, Virtual Machines


Virtual Machine (VM) based systems are widely used in the Internet and in corporate networks. In previous work we presented evidence that the virtualization overhead in a VM system perturbs TCP connections such that network performance deteriorates as compared to a non-VM system subject to the same user load. In this paper, we provide an explanation for these results. We show that that the underlying cause is due to VM overhead which induces ACK-compression resulting in highly bursty send behavior by a VM serving as a TCP end-point.

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