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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 60, NO.

3, MARCH 2013

1077

Comparative Handover Performance Analysis of


IPv6 Mobility Management Protocols
Jong-Hyouk Lee, Member, IEEE, Jean-Marie Bonnin, Senior Member, IEEE, Ilsun You, and
Tai-Myoung Chung, Senior Member, IEEE

AbstractIPv6 mobility management is one of the most challenging research topics for enabling mobility service in the forthcoming mobile wireless ecosystems. The Internet Engineering
Task Force has been working for developing efficient IPv6 mobility
management protocols. As a result, Mobile IPv6 and its extensions
such as Fast Mobile IPv6 and Hierarchical Mobile IPv6 have been
developed as host-based mobility management protocols. While
the host-based mobility management protocols were being enhanced, the network-based mobility management protocols such
as Proxy Mobile IPv6 (PMIPv6) and Fast Proxy Mobile IPv6
(FPMIPv6) have been standardized. In this paper, we analyze and
compare existing IPv6 mobility management protocols including
the recently standardized PMIPv6 and FPMIPv6. We identify
each IPv6 mobility management protocols characteristics and
performance indicators by examining handover operations. Then,
we analyze the performance of the IPv6 mobility management
protocols in terms of handover latency, handover blocking probability, and packet loss. Through the conducted numerical results,
we summarize considerations for handover performance.
Index TermsFast Mobile IPv6 (FMIPv6), Fast Proxy Mobile
IPv6 (FPMIPv6), Hierarchical Mobile IPv6 (HMIPv6), Mobile
IPv6 (MIPv6), Proxy Mobile IPv6 (PMIPv6).

I. I NTRODUCTION
OBILE wireless ecosystems facilitate more rapid
growth of digital ecosystems for our human lives
[1][6]. Mobility management protocols are at the heart of the
mobile wireless ecosystems. Mobile social networking, mobile
collaboration computing, and mobile shopping shall become a
reality with a well-deployed mobility management architecture.
Various mobility management protocols for enabling mobility service have been introduced. In particular, mobility
support in the network layer has been being developed by the
Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). Since the Mobile IPv6
(MIPv6) specification [7] was published, extensions including
Fast Mobile IPv6 (FMIPv6) [8] and Hierarchical Mobile IPv6
(HMIPv6) [9] for enhancing the performance of MIPv6 have
been developed. During the time when the extensions to MIPv6

Manuscript received August 23, 2011; revised March 5, 2012; accepted


April 18, 2012. Date of publication May 4, 2012; date of current version
October 16, 2012.
J.-H. Lee and J.-M. Bonnin are with the Networks, Security and Multimedia
(RSM) Department, TELECOM Bretagne, 35576 Cesson-Svign, France
(e-mail: jh.lee@telecom-bretagne.eu; jm.bonnin@telecom-bretagne.eu).
I. You is with the School of Information Science, Korean Bible University,
Seoul 139-791, Korea (e-mail: isyou@bible.ac.kr).
T.-M. Chung is with Sungkyunkwan University, Suwon 440-746, Korea
(e-mail: tmchung@ece.skku.ac.kr).
Color versions of one or more of the figures in this paper are available online
at http://ieeexplore.ieee.org.
Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/TIE.2012.2198035

were developed, comparative performance analysis for IPv6


mobility management protocols has been used as inputs for
developing improvements [10], [11]. For instance, comparative
performance analysis studied for MIPv6, FMIPv6, HMIPv6,
and a combination of FMIPv6 and HMIPv6 has been carried
out in [12] and [13] that identify each mobility management
protocols characteristics and performance indicators.
While host-based mobility management protocols are deployable in wireless mobile communication infrastructures,
communication service providers and standards development
organizations have recognized that such conventional solutions
for mobility service are not suitable; in particular, for telecommunication service, a mobile node (MN) is required to have
mobility functionalities at its network protocol stack inside,
and thus, modifications or upgrades of the MN are forced. It
obviously increases the operation expense and complexity for
the MN. The host-based mobility management protocols also
cause lack of control for operators since the MN manages its
own mobility support. Accordingly, a new approach to support
mobility service has been required and pushed by the 3rd
Generation Partnership Project to the IETF.
Proxy Mobile IPv6 (PMIPv6) is a network-based mobility
management protocol that allows an MN to change its point
of attachment without any mobility signaling processed at the
MN [14]. Two types of mobility service provisioning entity are
introduced in PMIPv6: mobility access gateway (MAG) and
local mobility anchor (LMA). A MAG is a mobility service
provisioning entity which is responsible for detecting and registering the movement of the MN in its access network. As
the MAG detects the movement of the MN, it sends a proxy
binding update (BU) (PBU) message to the LMA. Note that the
LMA operates as a home agent (HA) as specified in [7] and also
involves additional functions. As it receives the PBU message
for the MN, the LMA recognizes that the MN has attached to
the MAG and creates/updates the binding cache for the MN.
The MAG receives the proxy binding acknowledgment (BAck)
(PBAck) message including the home network prefix (HNP) for
the MN and then sends the router advertisement (RA) message
including the HNP. The MN configures its address, proxy home
address (pHoA), based on the HNP included in the RA message
sent from the MAG in the access network. Because the LMA
always provisions the same HNP for a given MN during its
movements, the MN obtains the same pHoA within the PMIPv6
domain. Owing to the network-based mobility service provided
by mobility service provisioning entities, the entire PMIPv6
domain appears as a single link from the perspective of the MN
[14]. As an extension protocol to PMIPv6, Fast Proxy Mobile

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 60, NO. 3, MARCH 2013

IPv6 (FPMIPv6) [15] has been later developed to accelerate


the handover performance by reducing handover latency and
preventing packet loss.
Compared to host-based mobility management protocols
which have been evaluated over the years, the network-based
mobility management protocols such as PMIPv6 and FPMIPv6
are in the early stage for deployments. It is thus desirable to
analyze and compare the host-based mobility management protocols and the network-based mobility management protocols
together. Note that the reader is assumed to be familiar with the
details of MIPv6, FMIPv6, HMIPv6, PMIPv6, and FPMIPv6
because this paper directly goes through the analytical modeling and performance evaluation of those protocols.
In this paper, we report a performance evaluation analysis. In
particular, to the best of our knowledge, such numerical performance analysis, including MIPv6, FMIPv6, HMIPv6, PMIPv6,
and FPMIPv6, is unprecedented in the literature. The analysis
conducted in this paper also provides a list of considerations for
handover performance:
1) utilizing link-layer (L2) information that helps to prepare
an MNs handover before the MN attaches to a new
access network;
2) employing buffering management that helps to prevent
packet loss during the MNs handover;
3) wireless link condition that largely affects the handover
performance of all mobility management protocols;
4) address configuration and preparation that count for a
large portion of handover latency of host-based mobility
management protocols;
5) network topology that affects the handover performance
of all mobility management protocols.
The remainder of this paper is organized as follows. In
Section II, previous works for performance analysis of IPv6
mobility management protocols are reviewed. Then, as preliminaries, the performance metrics, considered network model,
message information, and packet transportation delay models
are presented in Section III. In Section IV, the analytical
modeling for performance evaluation is presented. The comprehensive numerical analysis and discussions are presented in
Section V. Finally, conclusions are given in Section VI.

and HMIPv6 have been compared and evaluated in terms of signaling cost, binding refresh cost, packet delivery cost, required
buffer space, and handover latency. In the paper, the authors
presented the effect of subnet residence time, packet arrival
rate, and wireless link delay to the different IPv6 mobility
management protocols.
Simple handover performance analysis has been presented
in [16]. In the paper, the authors showed that PMIPv6 outperforms other IPv6 mobility management protocols owing to
its simple handover procedure. In [17], HMIPv6 and PMIPv6
are compared and analyzed in terms of location update, packet
delivery, and wireless power consumption costs. Then, in [18],
four different route optimization (RO) schemes for PMIPv6
are presented and analyzed. In the paper, the authors have
showed that the router optimization schemes solve the ineffective routing path problem and argued that the scalability of the
PMIPv6 architecture is improved owing to distributed routing
paths in the router optimization schemes. In [19], an analytical
cost model has been developed for evaluating the performance
of IPv6 mobility management protocols. The IPv6 mobility
management protocols such as MIPv6, FMIPv6, HMIPv6, and
PMIPv6 are analyzed and compared in terms of signaling cost,
packet delivery cost, tunneling cost, and total cost.
However, the previous performance analysis studies [12],
[13] considered only the host-based mobility management protocols. In [16] and [19], PMIPv6 has been compared with the
host-based mobility management protocols, but the recently
developed FPMIPv6 protocol [15] has not been considered.
Moreover, the cost analysis studies performed in [13] and
[17][19] do not help to understand the handover performance
of IPv6 mobility management protocols.
In this paper, we develop a uniform framework for conducting analytic modeling across the spectrum of IPv6 mobility
management protocols. The host-based mobility management protocols such as MIPv6, FMIPv6, and HMIPv6 and
the network-based mobility management protocols such as
PMIPv6 and FPMIPv6 are analyzed and compared in terms
of handover latency, handover blocking probability, and
packet loss.
III. P RELIMINARIES

II. L ITERATURE R EVIEW


In this section, we present some of previous studies for
performance analysis of IPv6 mobility management protocols.
In [12], the authors have carried out a performance comparison among MIPv6, FMIPv6, HMIPv6, and a combination of
FMIPv6 and HMIPv6. Simulation using the network simulator
ns-2 has been performed to analyze signaling costs associated to the different IPv6 mobility management protocols.
The authors showed that the protocol combining of FMIPv6
and HMIPv6 outperforms the other protocols in most cases.
However, the combination of FMIPv6 and HMIPv6 resulted
in a worse performance than MIPv6 when a user packet rate
is low.
In [13], the authors have developed an analytical framework
for performance analysis of IPv6 mobility management protocols. MIPv6, FMIPv6, HMIPv6, and a combination of FMIPv6

A. Performance Metrics
The following performance metrics are used.
1) Handover latency: It is the time interval during which an
MN cannot send or receive any packets while it performs
its handover between different access networks.
2) Handover blocking probability: It is the probability which
an MN cannot complete its handover when the network
residence time is less than the handover latency.
3) Packet loss: It is the sum of all lost packets destined for
an MN during the MNs handover.
B. Considered Network Model
The considered network model is depicted in Fig. 1 showing a generic network topology wherein all communication
entities are displayed. Suppose that the MN changes its point

LEE et al.: COMPARATIVE HANDOVER PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS OF IPv6 MOBILITY MANAGEMENT PROTOCOLS

Fig. 1.

Considered network model.

of attachments in a given domain composed of several access


routers (ARs). That is, the movement of the MN is limited
in the domain where the gate located at the top level of the
domain acts as an edge router connected to the Internet. Under
the assumption, the gate can be treated as the mobility anchor
point (MAP) for HMIPv6 or the LMA for PMIPv6. Similarly,
the MAG can be located at the AR when PMIPv6 is considered
in the network model shown in Fig. 1.
In Fig. 1, the following hop count parameters are defined for
describing particular paths between communication entities.
1) hCH : It is the average number of hops
between the correspondent node (CN) and the HA.
2) hCG : It is the average number of hops between the CN
and the gate.
3) hHG : It is the average number of hops between the HA
and the gate.
4) hGA : It is the average number of hops between the gate
and the AR.
5) hAA : It is the average number of hops between the
neighbor ARs.
6) hAM : It is the average number of hops between the
AR and the MN. Since hAM is the wireless link, it is
assumed to be one.
According to the considered network model, data/control
packets being exchanged between the MN and the HA/CN
must be routed through the gate. For instance, when RO in
MIPv6 is enabled, data packets sent from the CN to the MN
travel through hCG + hGA + hAM , where hAM is the
wireless link established between the MN
and the serving AR.
In addition, hAA can be rewritten as hGA [20], [21].
C. Messages Related to Mobility Support
Various messages related to mobility support are used in IPv6
mobility management protocols. The following message sizes
in bytes are considered in our analytical modeling [22], [18].
1) LRS : It is the size of the router solicitation (RS) message,
which is 52.
2) LRA : It is the size of the RA message, which is 80.

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3) LBUHA : It is the size of the BU message sent from the


MN to the HA, which is 56.
4) LBAckHA : It is the size of the BAck message, which
is 56.
5) LBUCN : It is the size of the BU message sent from the
MN to the CN, which is 66.
6) LLBUMAP : It is the size of the local BU (LBU) message
sent from the MN to the MAP, which is 56.
7) LLBAckMAP : It is the size of the local BAck (LBAck)
message, which is 56.
8) LPBULMA : It is the size of the PBU message sent from
the MAG to the LMA, which is 76.
9) LPBAckLMA : It is the size of the PBAck message, which
is 76.
10) LHoTI : It is the size of the home test (HoT) init (HoTI)
message, which is 64.
11) LCoTI : It is the size of the care-of test (CoT) init (CoTI)
message, which is 64.
12) LHoT : It is the size of the HoT message, which is 74.
13) LCoT : It is the size of the CoT message, which is 74.
14) LFBU : It is the size of the fast BU (FBU) message, which
is 56.
15) LFBAck : It is the size of the fast BAck (FBAck) message,
which is 56.
16) LUNA : It is the size of the unsolicited neighbor advertisement (NA) (UNA) message, which is 52.
17) LRtSolPr : It is the size of the RS for proxy advertisement
(RtSolPr) message, which is 52.
18) LPrRtAdv : It is the size of the proxy RA (PrRtAdv)
message, which is 80.
19) LHI : It is the size of the handover initiate (HI) message,
which is 52.
20) LHAck : It is the size of the handover acknowledge (HAck)
message, which is 52.
21) LT : It is the size of the tunneling header, which is 40.
22) LD : It is the size of the user data packet, which is 120.
D. One-Way Packet Transportation Delay Over a
Wireless Link
Wireless links are unreliable particularly compared to wired
links. An MN is attached to its AR through a wireless link,
and data/control packets for the MN are transmitted over the
wireless link. Accordingly, the packet transportation delay over
the wireless link is a critical performance factor. The reported
results in [23][25] are used here. Suppose that and f denote
the interframe time and the frame error rate (FER) over the
wireless link, respectively. Let pi,j be the probability that the
first frame sent from the MN arrived at the AR successfully,
being the ith retransmitted frame at the jth retransmission trial.
Then, the one-way frame transportation delay dframe between
the MN and the AR through the wireless link is expressed as
follows [23][25]:
dframe = Dwl (1 f ) +

n 
i

i=1 j=1

pi,j (2i Dwl + 2(j 1) )


(1)

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 60, NO. 3, MARCH 2013

Fig. 2. Timing diagram for MIPv6 handover.

where i n, j i, and Dwl is the wireless link delay mainly


depending on which L2 technology is being used. In addition,
n is the maximum number of retransmission trials. Then, pi,j
in (1) is expressed as follows [23][25]:
pi,j = f (1 f )2 ((2 f )f )((i

i)/2)+j1)

(2)

Suppose that k denotes the number of frames per packet over


the wireless link. Then, k is expressed as follows:
 
Lp
k=
(3)
Lf
where Lp and Lf are the packet size and the frame size,
respectively. Thus, by combining (1)(3), the one-way packet
transportation delay over the wireless link dwl (Lp ) is obtained
as follows:
dwl (Lp ) = dframe + (k 1).

(4)

E. One-Way Packet Transportation Delay Over a Wired Link


Wired links are reliable compared to wireless links. Assuming that packets sent over wired links will not be lost and will
reach the destination without retransmission trials, the oneway packet transportation delay over the wired link dwd (Lp )
is simply obtained as follows:
Lp
+ Dwired
dwd (Lp ) =
BWwired

(5)

where BWwired and Dwired are the bandwidth and the latency
of wired links, respectively. Then, by considering the number
of hops between the two end nodes, the one-way packet transportation delay over a number of wired links dwd (Lp , h) is
obtained as follows [26]:
dwd (Lp , h) =

Lp h
+ Dwired
BWwired

(6)

where h is the number of hops from the source node to the


destination node.
IV. A NALYTICAL M ODELING OF IPv6 M OBILITY
M ANAGEMENT P ROTOCOLS
In this section, formulas are derived for analyzing the performance metrics based on the handover timing diagrams.

A. Handover Latency of MIPv6


Fig. 2 shows the timing diagram for MIPv6 handover. The
actual handover of an MN is started when the MN loses
connectivity. Then, the MN attaches to an access network as
its link goes up and performs the movement detection process
by sending the RS message in order to receive the RA message
quickly. The MN configures its new care-of address (CoA)
based on the network prefix information included in the RA
message, and it performs the duplicate address detection (DAD)
process. Note that the stateless address autoconfiguration is
assumed here. In the case that the CoA is valid to be used in the
new network, the MN registers its new location information by
sending BU messages to its HA and CN. For the CN, the HoTI
and CoTI messages are sent to start the return routability (RR)
process.1 The HoTI message is first tunneled to the HA, and
then, it is forwarded to the CN. Receiving the BAck message
sent from the HA, it indicates that the location update to the
HA is completed, whereas the actual location update to the CN
is started by sending the BU message to the CN after receiving
the valid HoT and CoT messages. When the CN receives the
BU message sent from the MN, it starts to send data packets
directly to the MN. Note that the CN does not need to send the
BAck message back to the MN [7].
(MIPv6)
is the handover latency of MIPv6.
Suppose that LHO
Then, it is expressed as follows:
(MIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TMD + TDAD + TR

(7)

where TL2 is the L2 handover latency, TMD is the movement


detection latency, TDAD is the DAD latency, and TR is the
registration latency. TL2 depends on which L2 technology and
manufacture chipset are being used. The movement detection
process is completed as the MN receives the solicited RA
message from the AR in the new access network. Accordingly,
if the movement detection process is immediately started with
the linkup signaling, TMD can be rewritten as
TMD = dwl (LRS ) + dwl (LRA ).

(8)

In Fig. 2, THM presents the location update time for


the HA. Suppose that hHA is the average number of hops
1 As described in [17, Sec. 11.6.1], in some cases, the RR process may
be completed with only one message pair exchange or even be completed
without any message exchange. However, in this paper, we assume that the
MN performs its RR process for each handover.

LEE et al.: COMPARATIVE HANDOVER PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS OF IPv6 MOBILITY MANAGEMENT PROTOCOLS

Fig. 3.

Timing diagram for predictive FMIPv6 handover.

Fig. 4.

Timing diagram for reactive FMIPv6 handover.

between the HA and the AR serving the MN. Then, THM is


expressed as
THM = dwl (LBUHA ) + dwd (LBUHA , hHA )
+ dwl (LBAckHA ) + dwd (LBAckHA , hHA ).

(9)

The DAD process is successfully completed if a defending


NA message for the generated CoA is not arrived in RetransTimer [27]. Accordingly, TDAD can be rewritten as the
value of RetransTimer defined in [28]. When RO in MIPv6
is enabled, the RR process must be performed, so TR can be
rewritten as
TR = max{T , T } + TCM

(10)

where T is the required time to exchange the HoTI and HoT


messages via the HA and T is the required time to exchange
the CoTI and CoT messages directly with the CN. Suppose that
hCA is the average number of hops between the CN and the
AR serving the MN, i.e., hCA = hCG + hGA . Then, T
and T can be expressed as
T = dwl (LHoTI ) + dwd (LHoTI , hHA + hCH )
+ dwl (LHoT ) + dwd (LHoT , hHA + hCH )

(11)

T = dwl (LCoTI ) + dwd (LCoTI , hCA )


+ dwl (LCoT ) + dwd (LCoT , hCA ).

(12)

In (10), TCM is the time required to send the BU message


to the CN and receive the first data packet sent from the CN.
Note that the CNs BAck message is not required as presented
in [7]. Then, TCM is expressed as
TCM = dwl (LBUCN ) + dwd (LBUCN , hCA )
+ dwl (LD ) + dwd (LD , hCA ).

(13)

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B. Handover Latency of FMIPv6


FMIPv6 operates in either the predictive mode or the reactive
mode, depending on the circumstances [10].
Fig. 3 shows the timing diagram for predictive FMIPv6
handover. By utilizing the L2 trigger, an MN anticipates its
movement to reduce its handover latency and also prevent
packet loss. Predictive FMIPv6 is performed when the MN successfully receives the FBAck message sent from the previous
AR (pAR) before it moves to the new AR (nAR). As shown
in Fig. 3, the MN prepares its handover at the previous access
network. For instance, the MN actively obtains the new CoA
(NCoA) which will be used in the new access network, whereas
the relevant ARs exchange required information for serving the
MN. Then, as the MN attaches to the new access network, it
immediately sends the UNA message with the NCoA already
generated while being attached at the previous access network.
Thus, the handover latency in predictive FMIPv6 is significantly reduced compared to that of MIPv6.
(Pre-FMIPv6)
is the handover latency of preSuppose that LHO
dictive FMIPv6. Then, it is expressed as follows:
(Pre-FMIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TPRE

(14)

where TPRE represents the time at which the nAR receives the
UNA message sent from the MN and the time at which the MN
receives the first data packet sent from the nAR. Note that the
data packets sent to the MN are the buffered data packets that
the pAR has forwarded. Then, TPRE is expressed as follows:
TPRE = dwl (LUNA ) + dwl (LD ).

(15)

Fig. 4 shows the timing diagram for reactive FMIPv6 handover. Even if an MN can anticipate its movement by utilizing
the L2 trigger, sometime, the MN cannot complete its handover
preparing at the previous access network. That is, reactive
FMIPv6 handover is performed when the MN cannot receive
the FBAck message sent from the pAR [10].

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 60, NO. 3, MARCH 2013

Fig. 5. Timing diagram for HMIPv6 handover.

Fig. 6. Timing diagram for PMIPv6 handover.


(Re-FMIPv6)
Suppose that LHO
is the handover latency of reactive FMIPv6. Then, it is expressed as follows:
(Re-FMIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TDAD + TRE

(16)

where TDAD is included due to the lack of handover preparing


at the previous access network. Similarly, TRE is included for
representing the times to send the FBU message, exchange
required information between the relevant ARs, and receive the
first data packet sent from the nAR. TRE is expressed as
TRE = dwl (LFBU ) + dwd (LFBU , hAA )
+ dwd (LHI , hAA ) + dbuff -packet

(17)

where dbuff -packet is the time which the first data packet
buffered at the pAR arrives at the MN via the nAR. The buffered
data packets at the pAR are immediately sent to the nAR with
the FBAck message. Accordingly, dbuff -packet is expressed as
dbuff -packet = dwd (LD + LT , hAA ) + dwl (LD )

(18)

where LT is considered because the pAR tunnels data packets


destined for the MN to the nAR.
C. Handover Latency of HMIPv6
Fig. 5 shows the timing diagram for HMIPv6 handover.
HMIPv6 manages the movement of an MN in a localized
manner. In the diagram, the movements of the MN are assumed
as intradomain handovers. That is, the MN changes its point of
attachment within a MAP domain. In HMIPv6, L2 information
is not utilized to anticipate the movement of the MN so that
the handover process of HMIPv6 is similar to that of MIPv6.
The MN only registers its new location information by sending
the LBU message with the LCoA to its MAP. The actions for
registering new location information to both of the HA and
CN are not required in HMIPv6. This is because the MNs
movement within the MAP domain is transparent to the outside
of the MAP domain [11], [16].

(HMIPv6)

is the handover latency of HMIPv6.


Suppose that LHO
Then, it is expressed as follows:
(HMIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TMD + TDAD + TMAP

(19)

where TMD and TDAD are included. This is because HMIPv6


does not utilize L2 information to improve handover speed and
the LCoA is required to be generated as the MN receives the
RA message at the new access network. Then, TMAP represents
the required time to send the LBU message, receive the LBAck
message, and also receive the data packet sent from the MAP.
Then, TMAP is expressed as follows:
TMAP = dwl (LBUMAP ) + dwd (LBUMAP , hGA )
+ dmap-packet

(20)

where dmap-packet is the time which the first data packet sent
from the MAP arrives at the MN. The MAP immediately sends
data packets destined for the MN with the LBAck message.
Accordingly, dmap-packet is expressed as
dmap-packet = dwl (LD + LT ) + dwd (LD + LT , hGA ) (21)
where LT is taken into account because the data packets sent
from the MAP to the MN are tunneled.
D. Handover Latency of PMIPv6
Fig. 6 shows the timing diagram for PMIPv6 handover.
Similar to HMIPv6, PMIPv6 manages the movement of an
MN in a localized manner as well, but mobility service for
the MN is supported by mobility service provisioning entities
[17], [18]. As the MN attaches to the new access network, its
movement is detected and registered by the MAG at the new
access network. Then, the MN obtains the same HNP included
in the RA message sent from the MAG at the new access
network so that the address configuration and DAD process are
not required when the MN performs its handover in a PMIPv6
domain [16].

LEE et al.: COMPARATIVE HANDOVER PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS OF IPv6 MOBILITY MANAGEMENT PROTOCOLS

Fig. 7.

Timing diagram for predictive FPMIPv6 handover.

Fig. 8.

Timing diagram for reactive FPMIPv6 handover.


(PMIPv6)

Suppose that LHO


is the handover latency of PMIPv6.
Then, it is expressed as follows:
(PMIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TLMA

(22)

where TLMA involves the required time to send the RS message,


exchange PBU/PBAck messages between the MAG and the
LMA, and receive the first data packet sent from the LMA. In
this paper, we assume that the MAG detects the movement of
the MN when the MAG receives the RS message sent from the
MN. Then, TLMA is expressed as follows:
TLMA = dwl (LRS ) + dwd (LPBU , hGA ) + dlma-packet (23)
where dlma-packet is the time which the first data packet sent
from the LMA arrives at the MN. A bidirectional tunnel
between the LMA and the MAG can be implemented as a
static tunneling between them that requires no additional tunneling establishment latency. Here, such a static tunneling is
considered for PMIPv6. As the LMA receives the valid PBU
message sent from the MAG, it sends data packets destined for
the MN with the PBAck message. Accordingly, dlma-packet is
expressed as
dlma-packet = dwl (LD ) + dwd (LD + LT , hGA )

(24)

where LT is only taken into account at dwd (Lp , h). This is because the data packets for the MN are only tunneled between the
LMA and the MAG. Notice that this is a difference compared to
that of HMIPv6. Even if both of PMIPv6 and HMIPv6 similarly
manage the MN in a localized manner, PMIPv6 further reduces
the packet transportation overhead over the wireless link [17].
E. Handover Latency of FPMIPv6
Similar to FMIPv6, FPMIPv6 consists of predictive and
reactive modes.
Fig. 7 shows the timing diagram for predictive FPMIPv6 handover. While an MN is attached to a previous MAG (pMAG),
it reports an imminent handover event to the pMAG. Pre-

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dictive FPMIPv6 is performed when the pMAG successfully


exchanges the required information of the MN with a new MAG
(nMAG) via the HI and HAck messages before the MN attaches
to the nMAG. After a successful HI/HAck message exchange,
the bidirectional tunnel between the pMAG and nMAG is
established. The pMAG uses this tunnel to forward data packets
destined for the MN to the nMAG. When the MN changes its
point of attachment to the nMAG, the forwarded data packets
will be directly sent to the MN from the nMAG.
(Pre-FPMIPv6)
is the handover latency of
Suppose that LHO
predictive FPMIPv6. Then, it is expressed as follows:
(Pre-FPMIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TPRE-P

(25)

where TPRE-P is composed of the sum of the IP-layer connection setup delay D and the first data packet arrival delay
from the nMAG to the MN dmag-packet . Accordingly, TPRE-P
is expressed as follows:
TPRE-P = D + dmag-packet

(26)

where D is assumed to be the same delay as dwl (LUNA ) in


this paper and dmag-packet = dwl (LD ).
Fig. 8 shows the timing diagram for reactive FPMIPv6 handover. Similar to reactive FMIPv6 handover, it is executed when
an MN changes its point of attachment to an nMAG before the
fast handover preparation between the pMAG and the nMAG
is completed. In other words, reactive FPMIPv6 is performed
when the MN attaches to the nMAG before the bidirectional
tunnel between the pMAG and the nMAG is established.
(Re-FPMIPv6)
is the handover latency of reacSuppose that LHO
tive FPMIPv6. Then, it is expressed as follows:
(Re-FPMIPv6)

LHO

= TL2 + TRE-P

(27)

where TRE-P is included for representing the times to setup


the IP-layer connection, exchange the required information
between the relevant MAGs, and receive the first data packet
sent from the nMAG. Note that the data packet is tunneled

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from the pMAG to the nMAG and then sent to the MN. That
is, TRE-P is expressed as follows:
TRE-P = D + dwd (LHI , hAA ) + dwd (LHAck , hAA )
+ dbuff -packet .

(28)

F. Handover Blocking Probability


In order to analyze the handover failure for each mobility
management protocol, the handover blocking probability presented in [25], [29], and [30] is used here. The handover for
an MN can fail for several reasons such as unacceptably high
handover latency, signal-to-noise deterioration, and unavailable
wireless channel resource. For instance, if the residence time
that the MN stays in the network is less than the handover
completion time, the handover for the MN is failed due to the
loss of the link information or the wireless channel.
()
Suppose that LHO denotes the handover latency for a specific
mobility management protocol developed in the previous sec()
tions. Note that is used as a protocol indicator. Let E[LHO ] be
()
the mean value of LHO . Suppose that TR is the residence time
in the network with its probability density function fR (t). For
()
the sake of simplicity, LHO is also assumed to be exponentially
()
distributed with the cumulative function FT (t). Then, assum()
ing that LHO is the only handover blocking factor, the handover
blocking probability b is expressed as follows:
b = Pr

()
LHO

> TR =

 
0


()
1 FT (u) fR (u)du



()
c E LHO


=
()
1 + c E LHO

(29)

where c is the border crossing rate for the MN. Assuming


that the ARs coverage area is circular, then, c is calculated
as follows [13], [18], [20]:
c =

2
R

(30)

where is the average velocity of the MN and R is the radius


of the ARs coverage area.
G. Packet Loss
While an MN experiences its handover, data packets destined
for the MN will be lost if any buffer management at network
()
sides does not exist. The amount of packet loss p during a
handover is defined as the sum of all lost data packets sent from
a CN of the MN. Then, it is expressed as follows:
()

()
p = s E(S)LHO

(31)

where s is the average session arrival rate at the MNs wireless


interface and E(S) is the average session length in packets. As
()
()
presented in (31), p is directly proportionate to LHO . For fast
handover protocols such as FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6, the packet

Fig. 9.

Handover latency versus f with Dwl = 10 ms.

loss will not occur owing to packet buffering facilities, but only
delayed packet transportation will occur [13].
V. N UMERICAL A NALYSIS R ESULTS AND D ISCUSSIONS
In this section, the performance evaluation results of the
mobility management protocols are presented. For the numerical analysis, the following system parameter values are used
[25][27], [31]: hCH = 4, hCG = 6, hHG = 4, hGA =
4, hAM = 1, E(S) = 10, = 20 ms, n = 3, Lf = 19 B,
Dwl = [10, 40] ms, Dwired = 0.5 ms, BWwired = 100 Mbps,
TL2 = 45.35 ms, and TDAD = 1000 ms.
A. Handover Latency
Let f vary from 0 to 0.7 with a step value of 0.05. Figs. 9 and
10 show the handover latency against f . A higher value of f
increases the probability of the erroneous packet transmission
over the wireless link. Accordingly, the number of mobility signaling retransmissions is increased, which results in increased
handover latency. In other words, as shown in Figs. 9 and 10,
the handover latency for each mobility management protocol is
relative to f . The value of Dwl also contributes to the handover
latency. For instance, the handover latency is dramatically
increased as the value of f is increased with a higher value
of Dwl . Predictive FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6 outperform the other
mobility management protocols in terms of handover latency
in this analysis. This is because an MN in those predictive
fast handover protocols utilizes the L2 trigger and prepares
its handover at the previous (current) access network before it
actually moves to the new access network. However, reactive
fast handover protocols cannot significantly reduce the handover latency because an MN in those protocols must perform
some actions at the new access network. Accordingly, from
these results, it is confirmed that the reactive fast handover
protocols such as reactive FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6 can be used to
prevent packet loss but not to significantly reduce the handover
latency. Then, PMIPv6 is placed second in this analysis. An
MN in PMIPv6 is locally managed, and mobility signaling is

LEE et al.: COMPARATIVE HANDOVER PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS OF IPv6 MOBILITY MANAGEMENT PROTOCOLS

Fig. 10. Handover latency versus f with Dwl = 40 ms.

Fig. 11. Handover blocking probability versus f .

exchanged by the LMA and the MAG. It means that mobility


signaling over the wireless link is not performed so that the
effects of f and Dwl are minimized in the performance of
PMIPv6.
B. Handover Blocking Probability
Here, and R are set as 20 m/s and 500 m, respectively.
Then, Dwl is fixed at 10 ms, while f is varied from 0 to 0.7
with a step value of 0.05. Fig. 11 shows the handover blocking
probability for each mobility management protocol. Recall that
the conducted analysis for handover blocking probability only
considers the handover latency as a blocking factor. Similar to
the results shown in Figs. 9 and 10, the handover blocking probability is increased as the value of f is increased. The handover
blocking probabilities of predictive FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6
are lower than the others as well, but the handover blocking
probability of MIPv6 is higher than the others. PMIPv6 again
places second in this analysis. Now, f and R are set as 0.2

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Fig. 12. Handover blocking probability versus .

and 500 m, respectively. Then, is varied from 0 to 30 m/s.


Fig. 12 shows the handover blocking probability against . As
is increasing, the MN quickly changes its point of attachments.
It means that the MN with a high value of is required to
complete its handover in a shorter time than the MN with a
low value of . Accordingly, as the value of is increased, the
handover blocking probability for each mobility management
protocol is also increased. In the given analysis environment,
only two predictive fast handover protocols such as predictive
FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6 provide good performance in terms
of the handover blocking probability that is less than 0.05
even if is increased until 30 m/s. Note that PMIPv6 also
shows a considerable performance, i.e., the handover blocking
probability is less than 0.1 when reached to 30 m/s. Similar
to the previous results, MIPv6 calls forth poor performance in
terms of the handover blocking probability. This phenomenon
gets larger as the value of is increased. Next, and f are
set as 20 m/s and 0.2, respectively. Then, Dwl is fixed at 10 ms,
while R is varied from 400 to 800 m with a step value of 50 m.
The high value of R means that the size of the access network
for the MN is bigger than the low value of R. As R is increased,
the residence time, which the MN stays in the access network,
is increased so that the MN has more time to complete its
handover while reducing the handover blocking probability. As
shown in Fig. 13, most of the mobility management protocols
are under the influence of R, but R cannot have influence upon
the performance of predictive FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6.
Throughout the results shown in Figs. 1113, it is confirmed
that the handover latency of predictive FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6
is short enough to avoid the handover blocking issues caused
by f , , and R. The reason why those predictive fast handover
protocols achieve such superior performance compared with the
others is that those protocols allow the MN prepare its handover
at the previous access network before the MN performs the
actual handover to the new access network by utilizing the L2
information. Regarding the performance of PMIPv6, PMIPv6
avoids that mobility signaling, i.e., PBU and PBAck messages,
flies on the wireless link so that the value of f is not the influence on the performance of PMIPv6. In addition, in PMIPv6,

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONICS, VOL. 60, NO. 3, MARCH 2013

Fig. 13. Handover blocking probability versus R.

Fig. 15.

Packet loss versus f with Dwl = 40 ms.

observation is that fast handover protocols such as FMIPv6 and


FPMIPv6 provide no packet loss during the handover. This is
because such mobility management protocols adopt the packet
buffering mechanism at ARs/MAGs. For instance, in predictive
FMIPv6, data packets destined for the MN are first forwarded
to the nAR, and then, the nAR buffers the data packets until
the MN arrives at the access network managed by the nAR.
As the MN arrives, the nAR forwards the buffered data packets
to the MN. Similarly, data packets sent from the CN to the MN
are buffered at the pAR in reactive FMIPv6. Then, when the
pAR receives the FBU message indicating that the MN has been
attached to the nAR, the buffered data packets are forwarded to
the nAR. PMIPv6 also yields packet loss even if its handover
latency is quite low. This is because PMIPv6 does not provide
any buffering mechanism to prevent packet loss when the MN
performs its handover.
Fig. 14. Packet loss versus f with Dwl = 10 ms.

mobility signaling is only exchanged between the MAG and


the LMA over the wired link. Similar to that of MIPv6, the
handover performance of PMIPv6 has been improved as fast
handover techniques were applied, i.e., FPMIPv6.
C. Packet Loss
Without any buffering mechanism, data packets sent from the
CN to the MN will be lost while the MN performs its handover.
Figs. 14 and 15 show the packet loss during a handover. Here,
s and E(S) are set as one and ten, respectively. Then, f is
varied from 0 to 0.7 with different values of Dwl . In Fig. 14,
Dwl is set as 10 ms, whereas Dwl is set as 40 ms in Fig. 15.
According to the results shown in Figs. 14 and 15, it can be
seen that f with the higher value of Dwl has more impact
on the packet loss. The packet loss during the handover is
directly proportional to the handover latency as analyzed in the
previous section. For instance, MIPv6 causes a number of lost
packets compared to the others because it requires more time
to complete its handover than the others. Another interesting

VI. C ONCLUSION
In this paper, the existing IPv6 mobility management protocols developed by the IETF have been analyzed and compared
in terms of handover latency, handover blocking probability,
and packet loss. From the conducted analysis results, the following are confirmed.
1) Utilizing L2 information: In order to improve the handover performance, L2 information should be utilized.
As shown in Fig. 10, predictive FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6
outperform the other mobility management protocols because those protocols allow an MN to prepare its handover before the MN performs its actual handover to the
new access network. The reduced handover latency also
results in the reduced handover blocking probability as
shown in Figs. 1113.
2) Employing buffering management: In order to prevent
packet loss during the handover, any buffering mechanism should be employed. As shown in Figs. 14 and
15, only fast handover protocols such as FMIPv6 and
FPMIPv6 prevent the loss of data packets sent from
the CN.

LEE et al.: COMPARATIVE HANDOVER PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS OF IPv6 MOBILITY MANAGEMENT PROTOCOLS

3) Wireless link condition: As shown in Figs. 911, 14,


and 15, the wireless link condition, i.e., FER over the
wireless link, largely affects the handover performance
of all mobility management protocols. With this point in
view, the network-based mobility management protocols
such as PMIPv6 and FPMIPv6 have an advantage owing
to removed mobility signaling from the MN.
4) DAD latency: As shown in Figs. 10, 14, and 15, MIPv6
and HMIPv6 show poor handover performance. This
phenomenon is caused by the DAD process, which counts
for a large portion of handover latency. Since the DAD
process is performed over a wireless link, in a poor
wireless link condition, it badly influences the handover
performance of MIPv6 and HMIPv6. As a considerable
solution for this, the optimistic DAD [32] is recommended that eliminates the DAD completion time.
5) Network topology: As mobility signaling, i.e., BU/BAck,
LBU/LBAck, PBU/PBAck, HI/HAck, etc., is sent along
the network topology, the handover performance is
affected by the network topology configuration. For
instance, the handover performance of fast handover protocols such as FMIPv6 and FPMIPv6 is largely affected
by the number of hops between the relevant ARs/MAGs.
The conducted analysis results in this paper can be used
to identify each mobility management protocols characteristics and performance indicators. They could also be used to
facilitate decision making in development for a new mobility
management protocol. For instance, the IETF has recently
opened the distributed mobility management (DMM) working
group aiming at distributing mobile Internet traffic in an optimal
way while not relying on centrally deployed mobility anchors
such as HA, MAP, and LMA. As the DMM approach is in
an early stage of standardization, proposals are required to be
carefully analyzed and evaluated.
ACKNOWLEDGMENT
This paper is an extension of the first authors Ph.D. dissertation [33]. The companion paper, which was also part of the first
authors Ph.D. dissertation, presents an analytical cost model
for evaluating the performance of IPv6 mobility management
protocols [19].
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Jong-Hyouk Lee (M07) received the B.S. degree


in information system engineering from Daejeon
University, Daejeon, Korea, in 2004 and the M.S. and
Ph.D. degrees in computer engineering under Prof.
Tai-Myoung Chung from Sungkyunkwan University,
Suwon, Korea, in 2007 and 2010, respectively.
He joined the IMARA team at INRIA,
Rocquencourt, France, in 2009, where he worked
for the GeoNet European project, the ITSSv6
European project, the MobiSeND French national
project, and the SCOREF French national project.
He started his academic profession at the Networks, Security and Multimedia
(RSM) Department, TELECOM Bretagne, Cesson-Svign, France, in 2012
as an Assistant Professor. He is involved in standardization activities at
ISO TC204 WG16, ETSI TC ITS, and the IETF. He is an Associate Editor
of Wiley Security and Communication Networks. His research interests
include authentication, privacy, and quality of service in mobile networks;
mobility management for vehicular networks; and protocol-operation-based
performance analysis.
Dr. Lee was the recipient of two Excellent Research Awards from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Sungkyunkwan University. He is
a member of the Editorial Board of the IEEE T RANSACTIONS ON C ONSUMER
E LECTRONICS.

Jean-Marie Bonnin (SM09) received the Ph.D.


degree in computer science from the University of
Strasbourg, Strasbourg, France, in 1998.
He has been with TELECOM Bretagne, CessonSvign, France, since 2001, where he is currently
the Head of the Networks, Security and Multimedia (RSM) Department. His main research interests
lie in the convergence between IP networks and
mobile telephony networks and particularly in heterogeneous handover issues. Recently, he has been
involved in projects dealing with network mobility
and its application to intelligent transportation systems. He is involved in
several collaborative research projects at the French and European levels and
through international academic collaborations (mainly with Asia and North
Africa).

Ilsun You received the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in


computer science from Dankook University, Yongin,
Korea, in 1997 and 2002, respectively.
He was with Thin Multimedia Inc., Internet Security Company, Ltd., and Hanjo Engineering Company, Ltd., as a Research Engineer from 1997 to
2004. He has been an Assistant Professor with the
School of Information Science, Korean Bible University, Seoul, Korea, since March 2005. He is in
the Editorial Board for the International Journal
of Ad Hoc and Ubiquitous Computing, Computing
and Informatics (CAI), the Journal of Wireless Mobile Networks, Ubiquitous
Computing, and Dependable Applications (JoWUA), the International Journal
of Space-Based and Situated Computing, and the Journal of Korean Society
for Internet Information (KSII). He has served as a Guest Editor of several
journals such as CAI, MIS, AutoSoft, CAMWA, and WCMC. His main research
interests include Internet security, authentication, access control, Mobile IPv6,
and ubiquitous computing.
Dr. You is a member of IEICE, KIISC, KSII, KIPS, and IEEK. He has served
or is currently serving on the organizing or program committees of international
conferences and workshops.

Tai-Myoung Chung (SM00) received the B.S. degree in electrical engineering from Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea, in 1981, the B.S. degree in
computer science and the M.S. degree in computer
engineering from the University of Illinois, Chicago,
in 1984 and 1987, respectively, and the Ph.D. degree
in computer engineering from Purdue University,
West Lafayette, IN, in 1995.
He is currently a Professor with Sungkyunkwan
University, Suwon, Korea. His research interests are
information security, information management, and
protocols in next-generation networks.
Dr. Chung is currently the Vice-Chair of the Organisation for Economic
Co-operation and Development Working Party on Information Security and
Privacy. He serves as a Presidential Committee member of the Korean
e-government and the Chair of the Information Resource Management Committee of the e-government. He is also an expert member of the Presidential
Advisory Committee on Science and Technology of Korea and is the Chair of
the Consortium of Computer Emergency Response Teams.

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