An Early Look at Multipath TCP Deployment in the Wild


Multipath TCP was standardised in 2013 at IETF. It promises better use of network resources of multi-homed devices for capacity aggregation or seamless fail-over capabilities. The uptake has however been rather slow. Some operating systems support MPTCP out of the box, but little is known about their deployment on the server side. We built a scanning infrastructure to search for MPTCP-capable hosts on the Internet. In this study, we used the hosts on the Alexa Top 1M list to test the platform and gain insights into server support. We find that less than 0.1% of the hosts on the Alexa list currently support MPTCP. Interestingly, their geographic distribution is quite different from that of clients reported in other studies, with the majority of domains being in China. We also find that very few IPs actually expose multi-homing information, suggesting that these early deployments aim at providing reliability rather than capacity aggregation. We also identify some deployment issues.

Proc. 6th Int. Workshop on Hot Topics in Planet-Scale Measurement