Several protocols have been proposed to enable efficient multi-point communication (multicast or broadcast) both at the IP layer and at the application or overlay layer. However, no single protocol is universally deployed. In fact, we believe that none of the existing broadcast protocols will become the sole dominant Internet broadcasting technology. Instead, we expect islands of non-interoperable broadcast connectivity to exist. To address this, we propose an architecture that enables the composition of different multicast-capable networks, each with their own multicast or broadcast protocols, to provide an end-to-end broadcast service. We call this architecture the broadcast federation. In order to achieve high throughput scalability, our implementation is based on a clustered broadcast gateway (which is the centerpiece of the federation system). We design the broadcast federation architecture, implement the clustered broadcast gateway, and obtain results on the scalability of these gateways.
1ATT Research, Menlo Park, CA.