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Sibyl: A Practical Internet Route Oracle
Í. Cunha, P. Marchetta, M. Calder, Y. Chiu, B. Schlinker, B. Machado, A. Pescapè, V. Giotsas, H. Madhyastha, and E. Katz-Bassett, "Sibyl: A Practical Internet Route Oracle", in USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation (NSDI), Mar 2016.
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Sibyl: A Practical Internet Route Oracle

Ítalo Cunha2, 5
Pietro Marchetta4, 5
Matt Calder5
Yi-Ching Chiu5
Brandon Schlinker5
Bruno V.A. Machado2
Antonio Pescapè4
Vasileios Giotsas1
Harsha V. Madhyastha3
Ethan Katz-Bassett5

CAIDA, San Diego Supercomputer Center, University of California San Diego


Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais


University of Michigan


University of Napoli Federico II,
Napoli, Italy


University of Southern California

Network operators measure Internet routes to troubleshoot problems, and researchers measure routes to characterize the Internet. However, they still rely on decades-old tools like traceroute, BGP route collectors, and Looking Glasses, all of which permit only a single query about Internet routes—what is the path from here to there? This limited interface complicates answering queries about routes such as “find routes traversing the Level3/AT&T peering in Atlanta,” to understand the scope of a reported problem there.

This paper presents Sibyl, a system that takes rich queries that researchers and operators express as regular expressions, then issues and returns traceroutes that match even if it has never measured a matching path in the past. Sibyl achieves this goal in three steps. First, to maximize its coverage of Internet routing, Sibyl integrates together diverse sets of traceroute vantage points that provide complementary views, measuring from thousands of networks in total. Second, because users may not know which measurements will traverse paths of interest, and because vantage point resource constraints keep Sibyl from tracing to all destinations from all sources, Sibyl uses historical measurements to predict which new ones are likely to match a query. Finally, based on these predictions, Sibyl optimizes across concurrent queries to decide which measurements to issue given resource constraints. We show that Sibyl provides researchers and operators with the routing information they need--in fact, it matches 76% of the queries that it could match if an oracle told it which measurements to issue.

Keywords: active data analysis, measurement methodology, routing, software/tools
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