The project “Improving Internet user experience in Pacific Island countries with network coded TCP” aims to improve the utilisation of satellite links in and out of Pacific Island countries for whom fibre-optic connectivity is not – or not yet – an option that can be implemented economically.
Lack of good Internet connectivity is a significant detriment to economic and social development in the islands. This technology had not been trialled as a tunnel over satellite links before. Our project deployed encoders/decoders for TCP/NC in the Cook Islands, Tuvalu, and Niue on behalf of PICISOC by a team based at the University of Auckland (New Zealand), with logistical assistance from a number of partners in the Pacific.
The project also deployed an endpoint in Auckland and has secured a host for another in California. Our experiments show that TCP/NC can successfully mask packet losses to the TCP senders and thus prevent unnecessary slowdown, increasing link utilisation and goodput. The amount of improvement possible depends on the amount of link underutilisation as well as on the amount of residual conventional TCP/IP traffic.