An ACK buffering method to improve TCP performance in mobile computing environments

Jeng Ji Huang*, Jin Fu Chang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In mobile computing environments, a problem may exist between loss recovery mechanisms employed by the TCP (transmission control protocol) and RLP (radio link protocol). It is because that local retransmissions performed by the RLP could interfere with the TCP end-to-end error recovery when there are long and correlated packet losses due to bursty channel errors. That is, a spurious timeout [1], [2] would occur at the transport layer. In this paper, a new method is proposed to effectively suppress the occurrence of TCP spurious timeouts. In this new method a small number of ACKs (acknowledgements) is buffered at the base station prior to the emergence of every bad state period in the wireless channel, and these ACKs are henceforth released by the base station one at a time to reset the TCP sender's retransmission timer. Comprehensive comparisons between the proposed method and a baseline method are conducted through simulations to show that the improvement in throughput performance can be as large as 22%.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2273-2281
Number of pages9
JournalIEICE Transactions on Communications
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2002 Oct
Externally publishedYes


  • ACK
  • Spurious timeout
  • TCP
  • Throughput

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'An ACK buffering method to improve TCP performance in mobile computing environments'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this