Advances in networking and storage technology have made it possible to deliver on-demand services over networks such as the emerging video-on-demand (VOD) applications. A variety of studies have been focused on designing a video server suitable for VOD applications. However, the number of concurrent on-demand services supported by the server is often limited by the I/O bandwidth of the storage systems. This paper describes a discrete buffer sharing model which uses batching and buffer sharing techniques in video servers to support a large number of VOD services. Two operations, splitting and merging, enable the model to fully utilize system resources such as buffers and disk bandwidths. Moreover, this paper also introduces the concept of imprecise video viewing which assumes that a limited amount of quality loss is acceptable during video playback. Based upon this assumption, three shrinking strategies are explored to reduce buffer requirements. Finally, the results of experiments show that our methods perform better than traditional buffer management techniques for VOD systems.
- Buffer management
- Buffer sharing