Energy-Efficient KBP: Kernel Enhancements for Low-Latency and Energy-Efficient Networking

Kei FUJIMOTO
Ko NATORI
Masashi KANEKO
Akinori SHIRAGA

Publication
IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Communications   Vol.E105-B    No.9    pp.1039-1052
Publication Date: 2022/09/01
Publicized: 2022/03/14
Online ISSN: 1745-1345
DOI: 10.1587/transcom.2021EBP3194
Type of Manuscript: PAPER
Category: Network
Keyword: 
low latency,  energy efficient,  high throughput,  network,  kernel,  virtual machine,  

Full Text: FreePDF(2.1MB)

Summary: 
Real-time applications are becoming more and more popular, and due to the demand for more compact and portable user devices, offloading terminal processes to edge servers is being considered. Moreover, it is necessary to process packets with low latency on edge servers, which are often virtualized for operability. When trying to achieve low-latency networking, the increase in server power consumption due to performance tuning and busy polling for fast packet receiving becomes a problem. Thus, we design and implement a low-latency and energy-efficient networking system, energy-efficient kernel busy poll (EE-KBP), which meets four requirements: (A) low latency in the order of microseconds for packet forwarding in a virtual server, (B) lower power consumption than existing solutions, (C) no need for application modification, and (D) no need for software redevelopment with each kernel security update. EE-KBP sets a polling thread in a Linux kernel that receives packets with low latency in polling mode while packets are arriving, and when no packets are arriving, it sleeps and lowers the CPU operating frequency. Evaluations indicate that EE-KBP achieves microsecond-order low-latency networking under most traffic conditions, and 1.4× to 3.1× higher throughput with lower power consumption than NAPI used in a Linux kernel.