Subject: TCP socket buffers auto sizing
To: None <>
From: Rui Paulo <>
List: tech-net
Date: 02/04/2007 17:16:59
FreeBSD has done this:

Auto sizing TCP socket buffers.

Normally the socket buffers are static (either derived from global
defaults or set with setsockopt) and do not adapt to real network
conditions. Two things happen: a) your socket buffers are too small
and you can't reach the full potential of the network between both
hosts; b) your socket buffers are too big and you waste a lot of
kernel memory for data just sitting around.

With automatic TCP send and receive socket buffers we can start with a
small buffer and quickly grow it in parallel with the TCP congestion
window to match real network conditions.

FreeBSD has a default 32K send socket buffer. This supports a maximal
transfer rate of only slightly more than 2Mbit/s on a 100ms RTT
trans-continental link. Or at 200ms just above 1Mbit/s. With TCP send
buffer auto scaling and the default values below it supports 20Mbit/s
at 100ms and 10Mbit/s at 200ms. That's an improvement of factor 10, or
1000%. For the receive side it looks slightly better with a default of
64K buffer size.

New sysctls are:
   net.inet.tcp.sendbuf_auto=1 (enabled)
   net.inet.tcp.sendbuf_inc=8192 (8K, step size)
   net.inet.tcp.sendbuf_max=262144 (256K, growth limit)
   net.inet.tcp.recvbuf_auto=1 (enabled)
   net.inet.tcp.recvbuf_inc=16384 (16K, step size)
   net.inet.tcp.recvbuf_max=262144 (256K, growth limit)


Maybe we should too ?

Rui Paulo -