[ih] Internet Path Analysis Tool?
jack at 3kitty.org
Tue Jan 15 16:19:44 PST 2019
I vaguely remember a discussion, decades ago, about a tool to analyze
Internet behavior. But I don't remember where, when, or even if it was
a meeting or a conversation at a hotel bar, or whether anything happened
The problem was how to qualitatively evaluate how a specific Internet
path behaved. The concept was to have a packet-trace tool (think
something like Etherwatch) at each end, capturing all packets transiting
between 2 endpoints (PCs probably), and filtering to extract only the
packets associated with a particular "connection" (not necessarily TCP).
So you would capture two sets of data, one representing everything that
got sent, and the other everything that got received.
There have been tools for a long time that do such captures. The
"analysis" part was to create a tool that took that capture data from
the two ends, and correlated the two sets of data to analyze what
happened to the packets along the way. How many got dropped? Delivered
out of order? How wide was the dispersion of delivery times?
Duplicates? How did behavior change with size, or rate of sending?
Etc. If a TCP connection was involved, how many packets were
retransmitted? How may were retransmitted needlessly because the "lost"
packet arrived later? Etc.
The goal was to develop a set of such metrics which would effectively
measure the "quality" of a particular Internet path, track it over time,
day-to-day, month, etc., and be able to set trigger points where that
path would be considered "normal" or "degraded" or "unusable".
Did such a tool ever get implemented? Best of course would be a link to
a place to download it....one can dream.
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