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MAC design on real 802.11 devices: From exponential to Moderated Backoff

  • Authors: Tinnirello, I.; Wentink, M.; Garlisi, D.; Giuliano, F.; Bianchi, G.
  • Publication year: 2016
  • Type: Contributo in atti di convegno pubblicato in volume
  • OA Link:


In this paper we describe how a novel backoff mechanism called Moderated Backoff (MB), recently proposed as a standard extension for 802.11 networks, has been prototyped and experimentally validated on a commercial 802.11 card before being ratified. Indeed, for performance reasons, the time critical operations of MAC protocols, such as the backoff mechanism, are implemented into the card hardware/firmware and cannot be arbitrarily changed by third parties or by manufacturers only for experimental reasons. Our validation has been possible thanks to the availability of the so called Wireless MAC Processor (WMP), a prototype of a novel wireless card architecture in which MAC protocols can be programmed by using proper abstractions and a state-machine formal language, which enable easy modifications of legacy operations. Experimental results are in agreement with simulations and prove the effectiveness of Moderated Backoff, as well as the potentialities of the WMP platform.