A Communication Contention-Cognizant Scheduling Approach for Workflow Execution Across Public and Private Clouds

Qingliang Zhang, Quanwang Wu, Meng Chu Zhou, Junhao Wen, Siya Yao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In cloud computing, private cloud tends to exhibit high controllability but lack scalability, whereas public cloud is just the opposite. The hybrid cloud formed by combining them can effectively balance controllability and scalability, and has been widely adopted in industry for executing workflows. The network connecting public and private clouds goes through Internet and its bandwidth is rather limited in comparison with that inside clouds. Hence, cross-cloud data transmission can become a bottleneck of executing workflows in such environment. Moreover, multiple data communications may contend for bandwidth resources, thereby incurring delay. To address these concerns, this work establishes a scheduling model for workflow execution across public and private clouds, where a queueing mode is innovatively employed to address potential network communication contention. A contention-cognizant list scheduling (CCLS) heuristic equipped with task duplication is devised to minimize workflow makespan. It adopts a novel task sorting attribute to schedule tasks and cross-cloud data communications by using available computation and communication resources, and employs task duplication to obviate the needs for certain data communications. Experiments are conducted with realistic workflows and diverse settings, and the results verify the superiority of CCLS over the existing ones as it can always achieve the best makespan <italic>Note to Practitioners</italic>&#x2014;A crucial challenge for workflow scheduling across public and private clouds is that the cross-cloud bandwidth resource is relatively limited and multiple data communications may contend for it in practice. However, this communication contention issue has largely been neglected in existing investigations. To advance the state of the art, this paper proposes a communication contention-cognizant scheduling approach based on a queueing mode to minimize the makespan for workflow execution across public and private clouds. The proposed approach can be readily put into use and experimental results show that it performs better than traditional scheduling approaches that fail to consider communication contention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering
StateAccepted/In press - 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Communication contention
  • hybrid cloud
  • queueing
  • task duplication
  • workflow scheduling


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