# Real-Time k-bounded preemptive schedulingc

## Abstract

We consider a variant of the classic real-time scheduling problem, which has natural applications in cloud computing. The input consists of a set of jobs, and an integer parameter k > 1. Each job is associated with a processing time, a release time, a due-date and a positive weight. The goal is to feasibly schedule a subset of the jobs of maximum total weight on a single machine, such that each of the jobs is preempted at most k times. Our theoretical results for the real-time k-bounded preemptive scheduling problem include hardness proofs, as well as algorithms for subclasses of instances, for which we derive constant-ratio performance guarantees. We bridge the gap between theory and practice through a comprehensive experimental study, in which we also test the performance of several heuristics for general instances on multiple parallel machines. We use in the experiments a linear programming relaxation to upper bound the optimal solution for a given instance. Our results show that while fc-bounded preemptive scheduling is hard to solve already on highly restricted instances, simple priority-based heuristics yield almost optimal schedules for realistic inputs and arbitrary values of k.