Performance Analysis in IP Networks

Concepts and Technology development for Internet Communications Performance Analysis

The main achievement is the Palermo Performance Analyzer, selected by the Argentine Chamber of Internet (CABASE) for the traffic analysis between Internet Service Providers (ISPs), connected to the chamber's Network Access Points (NAPS, IXP's) installed all over the country. The project is supported by the Internet Society, which has donated equipment to run the Palermo Performance Analyzers.

The Palermo Performance Analyzer follows the state of all the observed flows, detecting in real time the limitations for the increase in performance of each one. Each connection may be limited by the network capacity, by the data generation rate at the source, or by the receiver processing capacity. Those flows limited by the network, are the flows trying to obtain the available capacity, so they are the flows that best inform about the user Quality of Experience (QoE).

Available capacity is measured by the Palermo Performance Analyzer not only for network limited connections, but also for connections limited by the sender or the receiver, through timing analysis of packets flowing in both directions for each connection.

Many issues are analyzed and measured using the Palermo Performance Analyzer, including: excessive buffer delay at the forwarding devices in the path (buffer bloating), asymmetric traffic volume, bottleneck saturation, defective transceivers, content cache processing saturation, packet loss problems, percentage of each type of limitation in the total traffic, connection count, and others.

It is important to remark that no traffic is injected to the network, all measurements are passive: analyzing the real traffic from users. Analysis covers end to end communications, without limiting to link or interface performance of the equipment where the Palermo Performance Analyzer is running, which can be installed at the Internet Exchange Point (IXP), at the service provider, or even at the customer.

Each chamber's Palermo Performance Analyzer processes the exchange traffic between many ISP's, delivering consolidated information to the chamber's Network Management System to be used at the Network Operation Center (NOC).

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