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A Study of the Impact of DNS Resolvers on Performance Using a Causal Approach

Hadrien Hours, Ernst Biersack, Patrick Loiseau, Alessandro Finamore, Marco Mellia

A Study of the Impact of DNS Resolvers on Performance Using a Causal Approach

27th International Teletraffic Congress - ITC 27, Ghent, Belgium, September 8th-10th, 2015

 

Abstract:

 

For a user to access any resource on the Internet, it is necessary to first locate a server hosting the requested resource. The Domain Name System service (DNS) represents the first step in this process, translating a human readable name, the resource host name, into an IP address. With the expansion of Content Distribution Networks (CDNs), the DNS service has seen its importance increase. In a CDN, objects are replicated on different servers to decrease the distance from the client to a server hosting the object that needs to be accessed. The DNS service should improve user experience by directing its demand to the optimal CDN server. While most of the Internet Service Providers (ISPs) offer a DNS service to their customers, it is now common to see clients using a public DNS service instead. This choice may have an impact on Web browsing performance. In this paper we study the impact of choosing one DNS service instead of another and we compare the performance of a large European ISP DNS service with the one of a public DNS service, Google DNS. We propose a causal approach to expose the structural dependencies of the different parameters impacted by the DNS service used and we show how to model these dependencies with a Bayesian network. This model allows us to explain and quantify the benefits obtained by clients using their ISP DNS service and to propose a solution to further improve their performance. 

 

 

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