In this paper, we investigate the performance of routing and rate allocation (RRA) algorithms in rate-based multi-class networks. On the arrival of a connection request, an RRA algorithm selects a route for the connection and allocates an appropriate rate on the route; failing this, it blocks the connection request. We measure the performance of an RRA algorithm in terms of its minimum weighted carried traffic. This performance criterion encompasses two widely used performance criteria, namely, weighted carried traffic and minimum carried traffic. We derive an upper bound on the minimum weighted carried traffic of any RRA algorithm. The bound can be computed by solving a linear program. Moreover, we show that the bound is achieved asymptotically, when the offered load and the link capacities are large, by a Partitioning RRA algorithm. Therefore the bound can be used as a performance benchmark for any RRA algorithm. We observe that the proposed Partitioning RRA algorithm, though asymptotically optimal, performs poorly at very low loads. We investigate the cause of this undesirable behaviour and obtain two improved asymptotically optimal RRA algorithms. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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