CAIDA Program Plan - 1998

A summary of research goals and plans for the period from 1998.

Performance & Analysis Tools

  • CAIDA Tool Taxonomy - CAIDA will continue to expand/develop
  • Java-Based Visualization/Analysis Tools
    • Mapnet [visualization of backbone topologies] - beta available
    • Maproute[tool for mapping/depicting output of traceroute and reverse traceroute] - under development
    • Plankton[tool for depicting topology of NLANR Global Cache Hierarchy] alpha available
    • MapPerf [tool to visually depict packet loss, latency, and other performance measures across select nodes] - under development
    • MapMBONE [tool for visualizing mbone tunnel topologies--see also viz of daily mbone traffic flows] - under development
  • Data Correlation/Analysis [correlation of performance and flow measurement data] - initiate task 3Q98
  • Tomography Tool tool [traffic modeling tool for predicting next hop routing behavior] - initiate task 2Q98

Coral Flow Monitors [primary collaborators - NLANR, MCI]


  • Ports
    • UNIX FreeBSD [NCSA-lead] - 1Q98 (beta version)
    • Gigaswitch [UCSD-lead] - 4Q97
    • Cflowd software to OC3mon [ANS-lead] - 2Q98
  • Post Processing/Statistics/Viz
    • Enhancements to output of current measurements - 2Q98
    • Visualization of OC3mon output - 3Q98
  • Deployment

CAIDA will deploy 8 boxes at commercial sites in 1998 [CAIDA will collect header data under NDA, traffic flow characterization reports will be provided to participating sites on 1) traffic across sponsored node & 2) how this traffic compares to average across CAIDA & NLANR sponsored nodes]

Reports available using this information would include statistics on:

    • packets, bytes, flows per second
    • packets and bytes per flow
    • application details, e.g., volume of web, mail, news, mbone, cuseeme, TCP vs UDP vs ICMP, etc.
    • flow distributions
    • locality of reference, e.g., number of (host+port, host, network) addresses involved in a single n-second snapshot, including details on traffic by autonomous system (AS) and 'heavy-hitters'
    • Under an NLANR follow-on cooperative agreement w/ NSF, UCSD plans to deploy several OC3mons and OC12mons during 1998 [select data on site-specific traffic across these boxes will be made public via web; macro-level aggregate reports across sites will be made available on periodic basis].
  • Measurements / Data
    • NLANR/UCSD will collect performance measurement data on sites associated with the vBNS and Internet infrastructure -- particularly at the NSF-supported High Performance Connections (HPC) sites connected to the vBNS. Initial tools may include: ping, mping, TReno, Pathchar. Measurements will be collected from devices located at HPC sites and key exchange points, associated U.S. and global partner sites, select CAIDA partner sites.

5 NLANR hosts are being used to conduct measurements. These are currently deployed at UCSD/SDSC (San Diego, CA), NCAR (Boulder, CO), NCSA (Chicago, IL), PSC/CMU (Pittsburgh,PA), MCI/vBNS (Reston, VA). 2-3 additional boxes will be deployed at exchange points.

  • Data will initially be stored in a flat file format. Efforts are underway to purchase a disk array and utilize SDSC's High Performance Storage System (petabyte), as well as develop an appropriate database to store and manipulate the performance and workload characterization data and trace samples.
  • Visualization/analysis tools will include: Maproute and MapPerf (described above).
  • A web-based public interface will be available by late 1998.

OC12mon - CAIDA and NLANR will test and begin deploying OC12mons during 1998.

CAIDA/SDSC Peering Facility

CAIDA and SDSC are working with an informal group of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to define requirements for CAIDA's San Diego Network Access Point (SD-NAP or CAIDAix) to be located at SDSC. This cooperative facility would provide services to San Diego's Internet community. The motivation for the facility is to provide direct access to real-world traffic for CAIDA researchers and participants in the proposed CAIDALab. Initial operation of this facility is planned for early.


The CAIDALab facility is intended for test and evaluation of Internet hardware (e.g., routers, switches, caches, flow monitors) and software (measurement and network management/planning tools) and for use by Internet researchers for traffic modeling and related research. Current Internet laboratories rely on simulated traffic flows; use of real-world conditions in testing these devices/software would provide improved data upon which ISPs and others can base purchasing and operational decisions. SDSC currently host traffic from several research and commercial networks, including the vBNS (OC12), CerfNet, and ESnet. The proposed CAIDA/SDSC Peering Facility should expand the breadth of traffic available to CAIDALab researchers.

CAIDA personnel are working with providers, researchers, and SDSC to define necessary components of a CAIDALab for late 1998. Key equipment requirements include: packet generator/sniffers; a variety of gigarouter switches and network interface cards (fddi, fast ethernet, hippi); DSU devices; BFR/CRTs; power supplies; and Unix workstations. Donations of equipment for the CAIDALab are being sought.

Industry Communications

  • IPNmoo- a networked collaborative environment, is a text based object-oriented multi-user domain (MOO) provided for real-time network management, operation, analysis, and research discussions, is provided in collaboration with Merit/IPMA's IPN (inter-provider notification project).
  • ISP Engineering Meetings - CAIDA co-sponsors informal discussions of ISPs interested in cooperatively discussing topics of common interest, e.g., meetings. Findings of the Backbone Operators Retreat/Gathering meetings in February 1997 and June 1997 were described at the North American Network Operators Group (NANOG). The next meeting co-sponsored by CAIDA will be in October 1997.
  • ISMA - NLANR/UCSD/SDSC hosted invitational Internet Statistics and Metrics Analysis (ISMA) workshops in 1996 and 1997. A series of focused mini-ISMA workshops will be initiated in mid 1998.
  • Other Internet measurement and analysis initiatives with which CAIDA staff cooperate include: CSG, DOE/SLAC, NIMI (LBL & PSC), XIWT/IPWT 

Internet Engineering Curriculum

CAIDA is committed to enhancing the quantity and quality of skilled Internet network engineers graduating from universities and technical institutions. With seed funding from NSF and Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), CAIDA is developing a repository for curriculum and training materials on Internet engineering, design and operation. Evi Nemeth (U. of Colorado) will be joining UCSD/CAIDA in January 1998 to lead this important initiative. Participation of universities and corporate sponsors is encouraged.

Last updated 20 February 1998
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