[RC5] Different classes of D.Net users?

Robert Zwaska rzwaska at nd.edu
Tue Jan 26 14:11:55 EST 1999

Greg Ackerson wrote:
> How about separating D.Net users into 2 or more "classes" by speed of
> connection? That way we could more smartly entertain the possibility of
> doing "high bandwidth" problems.
> Maybe there should be categories for "low-latency" and "high-client-
> memory" users as well.

I feel that distributed.net should not now, nor ever take part in any
bandwidth problems unless some very serious issues can be addressed. 
The problem is the structure of the internet.  We survive on the
goodwill of others by them providing us with routes provided we do the
same for them.  If d.net becomes a high-traffic problem then we add to
congestion and contribute to the need to upgrade.  Almost any problem
idea we could entertain would not be worth the cost that we would incur
on the rest of the internet community.

And while we only use idle time on computers, that is not true on the
internet.  A quick look at the stats show that the highest level of
server activity on d.net corresponds to the times of highest activity on
the internet.  That is the time where we can do the most damage.  We
would be doing the internet community a great disservice, especially if
it was for something as self-serving as a rendered movie.

Also, I fear the direct costs to d.net would be to great.  The current
architecture allows very little necessary high-end activity for the
master servers (i.e. parcelling out the blocks).  They do however,
already, take part in the very intensive activity of compiling,
transmitting, and interpreting logs to appease the membership (us) by
giving us stats.  Most high-bandwidth problems would effect a great
strain on these servers, and would probably involve a significant
capital investment by d.net, whereas it currently depends mostly on
borrowed time, both from computers and the client programmers.

The massive distibutedness of the d.net architecture precludes us from
seriously considering any high-bandwidth problems until bandwidth is
abundant, or d.net has sufficient funds to upgrade its own capabilities
and somehow reimburse the larger internet community.

Bob Zwaska
Bob Zwaska				rzwaska at nd.edu
448 Zahm Hall				http://www.nd.edu/~rzwaska
Notre Dame, IN 46556			(219) 634-3601

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