On wide area network optimization

Yan Zhang, Nirwan Ansari, Mingquan Wu, Heather Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Applications, deployed over a wide area network (WAN) which may connect across metropolitan, regional or national boundaries, suffer performance degradation owing to unavoidable natural characteristics of WANs such as high latency and high packet loss rate.WAN optimization, also known asWAN acceleration, aims to accelerate a broad range of applications and protocols over a WAN. In this paper, we provide a survey on the state of the art of WAN optimization or WAN acceleration techniques, and illustrate how these acceleration techniques can improve application performance, mitigate the impact of latency and loss, and minimize bandwidth consumption. We begin by reviewing the obstacles in efficiently delivering applications over a WAN. Furthermore, we provide a comprehensive survey of the most recent content delivery acceleration techniques in WANs from the networking and optimization point of view. Finally, we discuss major WAN optimization techniques which have been incorporated in widely deployed WAN acceleration products - multiple optimization techniques are leveraged by a single WAN accelerator to improve application performance in general.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6042388
Pages (from-to)1090-1113
Number of pages24
JournalIEEE Communications Surveys and Tutorials
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Caching
  • Compression
  • Data deduplication
  • Prefetching
  • Protocol optimization
  • WAN acceleration
  • WAN optimization
  • Wide area network (WAN)


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