Efficient visit orders for polling systems

O. J. Boxma*, H. Levy, J. A. Weststrate

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper deals with the issue of deriving efficient operational rules for polling systems with switchover periods. Specifically, we study the following static optimization problem: Determine the server visit order (polling table) that minimizes the mean total workload. This problem is strongly related with, and in many applications coincides with, that of minimizing the overall mean customer delay in the system. Two heuristic approaches to the polling table problem are presented, both using the exact solution of a related problem. The first approach is based on exact optimality results for a random polling system with the same traffic characteristics. The second approach uses a polling table model, in the analysis of which some of the restrictions are relaxed. Numerical experiments show that both approaches yield excellent results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-123
Number of pages21
JournalPerformance Evaluation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 1993


  • mean workload minimization
  • polling table
  • random polling


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