P4P model to boost internet efficiency

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A team of researchers from Yale University is aiming to make the internet work more efficiently by improving cooperation between ISPs and peer-to-peer software providers..

Professors Avi Silberschatz and Y. Richard Yang, and Ph.D. candidate Haiyong Xie, at Yale's Department of Computer Science are proposing an architecture called 'provider portal for P2P applications', or P4P.

The group aims to allow explicit and seamless communications between ISPs and P2P applications.

The P4P model can reduce the cost to ISPs and improve the performance of P2P applications, according to the academics.

Professor Silberschatz explained that current P2P information exchange schemes are "network-oblivious" and use intricate protocols for tapping the bandwidth of participating users to help move data.

"The existing schemes are often inefficient and costly, like dialling long-distance to call your neighbour and both of you paying for the call," he said.

Professor Yang added: "Right now the ISPs and P2P companies are dancing with the problem but stepping on each other's toes.

"Our objective is to have an open architecture in which any ISP and any P2P provider can participate."

Yale has facilitated the project behind the scenes and without direct financial interest through a working group called P4P formed in July 2007 to prompt collaboration on the project.

The working group is hosted by Distributed Computing Industry Association and led by co-chairs Doug Pasko from Verizon and Laird Popkin from Pando. The group has more than 50 participating organisations.
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