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HTTP proxy servers (was Re: MTU of the Internet?)

  • From: Matt Ranney
  • Date: Thu Feb 12 15:33:23 1998

Marc Slemko <[email protected]> writes:

[...]
> shows some interesting information about the wins of persistent
> connections and piplining, however their tests only went as far as
> including a 28.8k local dialup, which does not simulate the "average user" 
> going to the "average web site".  If you are dropping packets and
> congestion contol is coming into play, you may see more impact when using
> one connection that is temporarily stalled than multiple connections, with
> the hope that at least one will be sending at any time.  I am not aware of
> any research to support (or deny, for that matter) this view, however
> AFAIK there is a general lack of published research on the interaction
> between HTTP w/pipelined and persistent connections and the Internet. 

If packets were being lost on the path somewhere beyond the dialup
user's ISP, which is usually the case, then having the dialup user go
through a proxy server would solve this problem.  The client can open
up all the stream it wants to, doing all the nasty and anti-social
things that it pleases, and none of us elsewhere on the Internet will
care as long as the proxy server is well-behaved.  The proxy server is
presumably more capable of dealing with packet loss because of its
lower RTT to the originating HTTP server.

Then once people get all the HTTP/1.1 stuff figured out, you only need
to upgrade the proxy server instead of upgrading each and every single
client browser.

And as an added bonus, there might be a cache hit.
-- 
Matt Ranney - [email protected]
Let's not let the students run the High School.