Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)
Although the EDCA access mechanism of the 802.11e standard supports legacy DCF stations, the presence of DCF stations in the WLAN jeopardizes the provisioning of the service guarantees committed to the EDCA stations. The reason is that DCF stations compete with Contention Windows (CWs) that are predefined and cannot be modified, and as a result, the impact of the DCF stations on the service received by the EDCA stations cannot be controlled. In this paper, we address the problem of providing throughput guarantees to EDCA stations in a WLAN in which EDCA and DCF stations coexist. To this aim, we propose a technique that, implemented at the Access Point (AP), mitigates the impact of DCF stations on EDCA by skipping with a certain probability the Ack reply to a frame from a DCF station. When missing the Ack, the DCF station increases its CW, and thus, our technique allows us to have some control over the CWs of the legacy DCF stations. In our approach, the probability of skipping an Ack frame is dynamically adjusted by means of an adaptive algorithm. This algorithm is based on a widely used controller from classical control theory, namely a Proportional Controller. In order to find an adequate configuration of the controller, we conduct a control-theoretic analysis of the system. Simulation results show that the proposed approach is effective in providing throughput guarantees to EDCA stations in presence of DCF stations.