CAIDA Program Plan - 1999

The Cooperative Association for Internet Data Analysis (CAIDA) was established in late 1997 with seed funds from the National Science Foundation (NSF). CAIDA is a collaborative undertaking among commercial, research and government entities and is devoted to promoting greater cooperation in the engineering and maintenance of a robust, scalable global Internet infrastructure. An Annual Report covering CAIDA's first year in operation is available at (link expired)

1. Education and Outreach

1.a Internet Engineering Curriculum Repository (IEC) -

The IEC was initiated in early 1998 with the goal of helping educators and others interested in Internet technology keep up with developments in the field. The focus will be on developing and maintaining a repository of teaching materials to support new University courses. Workshops will be held to facilitate Internet-related faculty's use of the repository.


  • Establish an Advisory Board for the IEC consisting of key individuals from academia and the private sector.
  • Hold two 2-day IEC workshops for educators in San Diego, CA in spring '99
  • Hold two 5-day IEC workshops for educators in Boulder, CO in late summer '99
  • Expand the number of courses and breadth of training materials available through the IEC repository site

Project Lead: Evi Nemeth, CAIDA

Funding Sources: NSF (IEC grant) and Member (Cisco)

1.b Internet Teaching Laboratories (ITL) -

During early efforts under the IEC, it became apparent that few of the nation's Universities have courses in networking technology and even fewer have facilities for hands-on exposure and training of students on current Internet hardware and software. With donations of equipment from vendors, notably Cisco, and with financial support from NSF, we propose to create Internet teaching laboratories at approximately 15 of the nation's Universities. MCI is serving as a major collaborator during Phase I of this effort, contributing engineering talent to lead the site reviews and establishment of the ITL facilities.


  • Establish prototype facilities at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), the University of Colorado, Boulder (CU) and the University of Virginia (UVA).
  • Facilitate review and selection of universities' requests to be considered as a ITL site.
  • Conduct site reviews and establish ITL laboratories at 10-15 sites based on recommendations by the IEC Advisory Board.
  • Develop and maintain an infrastructure and curriculum materials supporting these laboratories.

Project Lead: Kevin Thompson (MCI) and TBD Engineer (CAIDA/IEC)

Funding Sources: Cisco, MCI, NSF

1.c Cache Workshop & Bake-Off - and

The 4th International Web Cache Workshop and Bake-Off is a collaboration between the UCSD IRCACHE Program and CAIDA. The Workshop is scheduled for March 29-April 1, 1999 with approximately 250 attendees expected from more that 25 countries. The Bake-Off is a related effort in mid March to benchmark web cache hardware and software (commercial and research) using the Polygraph Test Suite developed by the IRCACHE staff.


  • Provide technical and administrative support for this workshop and benchmarking event.
  • Provide evaluation and feedback to Members on their cache products.
  • Support commercial cache prototype efforts, including the MAE-West Cache.

Project Leads: Duane Wessels and Alex Rousskov (IRCACHE); Amy Blanchard (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: NSF, vendors, participant fees

1.d SD-NAP - (link expired)

CAIDA hosts the SD-NAP at the University of California's San Diego Supercomputer Center, with support by SDSC and PCH. The primary purpose of the SD-NAP is to facilitate efficient interconnection of ISPs in and to Southern California. The secondary purpose of the SD-NAP is to provide a platform for traffic analysis by CAIDA researchers.


  • Continue to maintain facility and interconnect new ISPs interested in bi-lateral or multi-lateral peering at SDSC.
  • Use the exchange, as appropriate, as a testing environment for new measurement/analysis tools.

Project Leads: Amy Blanchard and Sean McCreary (CAIDA); Jay Dombrowski (SDSC)

Funding Sources: Membership, NAP dues

1.e Internet Statistics and Metrics Analysis (ISMA) Workshops -

As an outreach vehicle to the research and commercial communities, CAIDA periodically holds invitational Internet statististics and analysis workshops. The focus is generally to cover current activities and near-term priorities, particularly those enabling better planning for and management of networks and scaling of the Internet.


  • Hold an ISMA: Passive Measurement and Data Analysis workshop in the Winter '99 focused on research priorities.

  • Hold an ISMA: Network Visualization workshop in April 1999 focusing community attention on this emerging sector.

  • Hold an ISMA: Active Measurements workshop in late 1999 focusing on macro-level measurements, service level agreements, and performance analysis.

Project Lead: Tracie Monk (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: NSF, Membership

2. Measurement Tool Development

2.a Hardware - Coral (DS3, OC3, OC12, OC48 monitors) - Coral and

Coral is a suite of flexible, affordable, high performance network statistics collection tools based on stand-alone passive monitors. Current implementations are available in both DOS and UNIX for OC3 and OC12 speeds. Code and most of the hardware schematics are publicly available.


  • Collaborate with NLANR on the testing of the DAG-2 and DAG-3 cards for monitoring DS-3 through OC12 links.
  • Enhance drivers and Coral code for all UNIX monitors.
  • Work with subcontractors (MCI and University of Waikato) on the development of an OC48 monitor -- prototype planned for Fall 1999.
  • Facilitate the community's development of a Measurement Specification for Router Vendors - draft at

Project Lead: David Moore (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: DARPA/SPAWAR, NSF, Membership

2.b Software - Skitter and


  • Deploy additional active measurement hosts; expand destination sites to 60,000.
  • Enhance skitter modules to reflect member-priorities and analysis requirements under the NGI project.
  • Make skitter binaries available to members.

Project Lead: Daniel McRobb (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: DARPA/SPAWAR, NSF, Membership

2.c Security -

CAIDA is collaborating with the Pacific Institute for Computer Security (PICS) at SDSC to enhance the OC12mon passive traffic monitor to facilitate ubiquitous network monitoring at aggregation points (e.g. DMZ's and up-stream ISP's), by developing dynamic filtering and data collection, security policy compliance monitoring, and security policy enforcement components. PICS is also developing security implementations for CAIDA's cflowd code (see below).


  • Develop basic filtering and data collection mechanisms using Coral OC12 monitors.
  • Extend the OC12mon capabilities by developing security policy compliance and enforcement modules.
  • Develop basic filtering and data collection/analysis mechanisms using cflowd.

Project Lead: Andrew Gross (SDSC/PICS)

Funding Sources: DARPA/SPAWAR, PICS funding

3. Traffic Analysis

3.a Operational

Operational analyses to date has focused on collaborations with individual ISP engineers and hardware vendors to provide details on the workload characteristics of specific links. Focus has been on corroborating assumptions and providing baselines on traffic flows based on passive data. Future operational analyses will expand passive techniques (including experiments in accounting using NetraMet) and include new techniques using skitter and other active measurement tools for monitoring networks for operational reasons and for verification of Service Level Agreements (SLAs).


  • Produce a trend analysis report on changes in traffic patterns at one ormore exchange points.
  • Develop recommendations on the types of measurement and analyses beneficial for engineering and operations.
  • Collaborate with member(s) in the deployment of monitors on their network, tailoring analysis scripts and reporting formats to reflect requirements of member(s).
  • Port NetraMet to Coral and cflowd and test at one or more trial sites.
  • Enhance analysis features of skitter, cflowd, and CoralReef tools to reflect operational priorities of members.

Project Leads: David Moore and Daniel McRobb (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: NSF, Membership

3.b Research

Analysis of Internet traffic (active and passive) can provide insights into the nature and evolution of Internet traffic patterns and assist engineers to better architect and manage their networks.


  • Collaborate with NLANR/MOAT in the analysis of NAI and routing data from High Performance Connections sites and Government exchange points.
  • Develop internal research group with the goal of analyzing and publishing papers on:
    - sources of packet corruption in the network
    - trends in web traffic and effects of deployment of http 1.1
    - metrics for SLAs and techniques for their verification
    - wide-scale topology and performance changes as revealed through skitter measurements
  • Collaborate with researchers (3rd party) in their analysis of skitter data

Project Lead: David Moore (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: NSF, DARPA/SPAWAR

3.c Tools -, Coral, and

Tools for analysis of traffic data include cflowd (router-based data) and CoralReef (ocXmon data). 


  • Enhance operational usefulness of the cflowd and CoralReef analysis software -- particularly for capacity planning, network operations, and security monitoring
  • Enhance the reporting formats and graphics capabilities of cflowd and CoralReef analysis software.
  • Develop automated techniques and tools for detection of damaged hosts and routers

Project Lead: David Moore (CoralReef) and Daniel McRobb (cflowd)

Funding Sources: NSF, Membership

4. Traffic Monitoring

Active and passive traffic monitors deployed at key commercial sites, such as MAE-West, provide a wealth of information on the current condition and evolution of the Internet.


  • Deploy additional active monitors, including 3-4 monitors in Asia and Europe.
  • Deploy 1-2 additional passive monitor at NAP facilities.
  • Assist members, as appropriate, in their deployment of active or passive monitors in their networks.

Project Lead: David Moore (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: NSF, Membership

5. Visualization

Network visualizations are in their early stages of development, with CAIDA's visualization tools (inc. Otter and Mapnet) among the early prototypes.


  • Develop series of maps of the Internet using data available from skitter measurements.

  • Initiate efforts to apply Tamara Munzner's Hyperbolic Space algorithms to skitter data.

  • Continue to work with commercial simulation and modeling vendors to encourage greater commercial Internet relevance in their products.
  • Continue development of the Otter (and related) visualization tools to enhance their relevance as tools for Internet engineers and network architects.

Project Leads: kc claffy and Daniel McRobb (CAIDA)

Funding Sources: NSF, Membership

6. Other Ongoing Efforts

Efforts initiated during 1998 which will continue at low levels of effort during 1999 include:

  • Tool Taxonomy - initiated under Cisco sponsorship this site provides a summary of commercial and research tools available for measurement and/or analysis of Internet traffic.
  • Mapnet - the Mapnet tool provides a summary of backbone topologies and connections of major ISPs. Updating of this database will continue.
Last updated 17 February 1999
Last Modified