On the Treeness of Internet Latency and Bandwidth

Describing a complex and large network such as the Internet in

a concise way, that brings out its fundamental properties, is a

task that has challenged researchers for many years. Existing

work on internet structure -- and empirical reasoning --

indicates that it is tree-like. This works quantifies the

degree to which at least two important internet

measures---latency and bandwidth---approximate tree metrics. We

evaluate our ability to model end-to-end path attributes using

a tree embedding by actually building tree representations. In

addition to being simple and intuitive models, these trees

provide a range of commonly required functionality beyond

simple attribute modeling.

The benefits of our study are twofold. First, we investigate

the ability to portray the inherent hierarchical structure of

internets using the most pure and compact topology, trees.

Second, trees obviate many natural tasks, such as shortest path

routing and selection of multicast spanners. Our study shows

that these tasks can be done with high degree of success and

little overhead.


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