Nevil Brownlee, CAIDA | The University of Auckland
This web page explains how to set up a NeTraMet meter for monitoring the Domain Name System (DNS).
CAIDA collects `DNS performance' measurments, and makes summary data available via the web page http://www.caida.org/cgi-bin/dns_perf/main.pl We are looking for additional meter sites in order to enhance our view of global root/gTLD performance. As of March 2003, meters in San Diego (CA), Boulder (CO) and Auckland (New Zealand) are collecting data.
To monitor DNS, we configure a meter to observe DNS request and response packets (i.e. packets to/from UDP port 53 on all root/gTLD nameservers.) The best location for the meter is at the gateway between a 'local' network and the Internet, as shown in the diagram below.
The diagram shows a `local net' to the left and the Internet to the right. The local net has several DNS resolvers (magenta dots), which ask root servers (green dots) and gTLD servers (blue dots) to resolve various domain names. The meter is attached to a `metering point,' where it can see the packets passing between local resolvers and root/gTLD servers.
For a `local' network one could select a large single site, e.g. a University, or perhaps a whole ISP. The criteria for a site are:
The NeTraMet meter (lower middle of the diagram) is a dedicated PC running either BSD or Linux. The PC minimum specification is
Processor and RAM depends on the metering point technology (see below), as a rough guide I suggest
There are several ways to establish a metering point, depending on the physical network architecture at the site's gateway:
Although CAIDA is keen to establish more DNS performance metering sites, we have limited resources to support them. If you are interested in hosting a NeTraMet meter, please email your request, together with a brief description of your site, to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Once a meter PC is installed, you will need to give it an IP address and domain name, e.g. netramet.your-site.
If a CAIDA PC is used, we will set up and maintain user accounts on it. Otherwise, we will require you to set up a user account for `nevil.' In either case the `nevil' account must have sudo privilege, since that is required for NeTraMet to see packet headers on its metering
CAIDA will maintain the NetraMet software, and the DNS data collection system used to collect data for the CAIDA DNS performance web page.
In your request you should:
`CAIDA NeTraMet site' requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.