Re: Packet accounting and a place to do it


Winston B Edmond (bbn.com!wbe@bbn.com)
20 Apr 88 18:10:49 GMT


David Engle writes:
>A good example of what could be easily eliminated by a per packet billing
>system is the archival storage facilities around the net. How many sites
>are going to maintain files for anonymous ftp or gratuitous mailing to
>others, if it costs the site "real" money to do so.

This particular problem could be solved with "reverse billing": Create a
means for a server and a client to negotiate billing charges. In the case of
file archive servers, the server would ask the network to reverse the billing
charges. The network then asks the client if it is willing to accept the
charges for the file transfer. The client accepts by informing the network
that it will accept charges for packets from the server, and the network
informs the server that billing costs for that connection have been accepted
by the client. It is important that the billing entity (the network) mediate
this interaction so that hosts cannot unilaterally shift charges to other
hosts.

The main problem with this method is that it depends on having an
identifiable "connection" that is recognizable by the network billing
routines.
 -WBE



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