To schedule or not to schedule: When no-scheduling can beat the best-known flow scheduling algorithm in datacenter networks

Soheil Abbasloo, Yang Xu, H. Jonathan Chao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Conventional wisdom for minimizing the average flow completion time (AFCT) in the datacenter network (DCN), where flow sizes are highly variable, would suggest scheduling every individual flow. However, we show that considering scheduling delay (including schedulers computational and communication delays), serving most of the flows without any scheduling and only in first-come-first-served (FCFS) manner significantly improves their performance even when it is compared to the shortest remaining processing time (SRPT) known as optimum algorithm when scheduling delay is zero. To do so, we only require to have two coarse classes of flows categorized based on flows sizes (1st-class including flows smaller than a threshold, H, and 2nd-class including others) and serve 1st-class flows always before serving 2nd-class ones. To show that, we take SRPT scheduling algorithm accompanied by the global knowledge of flows, formulate impact of scheduling delay on its performance, and prove that for any flow size distribution and network load ( < 1), there is always a threshold, H, which guarantees 1st-class flows achieve lower AFCT under FCFS compared to SRPT. Our numerically calculated results and extensive flow-level simulations show that on average, more than 90% of flows could be in 1st-class and consequently do not require any scheduling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number107177
JournalComputer Networks
Volume172
DOIs
StatePublished - May 8 2020

Keywords

  • Datacenter network
  • FCFS
  • Flow completion time
  • Flow scheduling
  • SRPT

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications

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