On customers acting as servers

Efrat Perel, Uri Yechiali*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We consider systems comprised of two interlacing M/M/ • /• type queues, where customers of each queue are the servers of the other queue. Such systems can be found for example in file sharing programs, SETI@home project, and other applications [Arazi, A, E Ben-Jacob and U Yechiali (2005). Controlling an oscillating Jackson-type network having state-dependant service rates. Mathematical Methods of Operations Research, 62, 453-466]. Denoting by L i the number of customers in queue i (Qi), i = 1, 2, we assume that Q1 is a multi-server finite-buffer system with an overall capacity of size N, where the customers there are served by the L2 customers present in Q2. Regarding Q2, we study two different scenarios described as follows: (i) All customers present in Q 1 join hands together to form a single server for the customers in Q2, with service time exponentially distributed with an overall intensity μ2L1. That is, the service rate of the customers in Q2 changes dynamically, following the state of Q 1. (ii) Each of the customers present in Q1 individually acts as a server for the customers in Q2, with service time exponentially distributed with mean 1/μ2. In other words, the number of servers at Q2 changes according to the queue size fluctuations of Q1. We present a probabilistic analysis of such systems, applying both Matrix Geometric method and Probability Generating Functions (PGFs) approach, and derive the stability condition for each model, along with its two-dimensional stationary distribution function. We reveal a relationship between the roots of a given matrix, related to the PGFs, and the stability condition of the systems. In addition, we calculate the means of Li, i = 1, 2, along with their correlation coefficient, and obtain the probability of blocking at Q1. Finally, we present numerical examples and compare between the two models.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1350019
JournalAsia-Pacific Journal of Operational Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2013


  • Customers act as servers
  • M/M/ • /N
  • M/M/1/∞
  • M/M/c/∞
  • QBD


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