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Performance Assurance Service


Not all network failures are noticeable. Networks can also fail in ways that cannot be detected except by actively monitoring the end-to-end performance of the data plane. The control plane cannot always be relied upon to provide dependable information about the state of a network or the services it provides.

The Performance Assurance Service provides a framework for operational monitoring of network services, including hard and soft failures of the network itself, as well as high- and low-level services, from provisioning Advanced Layer 2 circuits to accessing NET+ cloud solutions.

In addition, the Performance Assurance Service continues Internet2’s tradition of transparency by providing visibility into network service performance and availability metrics.

See for yourself! Visit the Internet2 Performance Assurance Service dashboard.


Continuous Measurement

The Performance Assurance Service helps characterize the operations of the Internet2 Advanced Layer 2 Service (AL2S) and Advanced Layer 3 Service (AL3S) networks by continuously measuring achievable end-to-end network throughput and packet loss.

AL3S packet loss matrix

Figure 1 – Advanced Layer 3 Service packet loss matrix

AL2S throughput graph

Figure 2 – Advanced Layer 2 Service throughput between Phoenix, AZ, and Salt Lake City, UT

Full matrix of bandwidth for AL2S transit paths

Figure 3 – Full bandwidth matrix for Advanced Layer 2 Service transit paths

As well as providing visibility into the network for members and end users, PAS measurements are continuously monitored by the Internet2 Network Operations Center. Whenever network throughput or packet loss drops below acceptable thresholds, alarms are generated so the engineering staff can move quickly to resolve the problem.

Ad-Hoc Testing

The AL2S and AL3S core meshes demonstrate and help ensure that Internet2's networks are performing as expected, by continuously testing and verifying achievable bandwidth and detecting packet loss events. However, ad-hoc testing may be useful:

  • to aid in troubleshooting cross-domain network issues
  • to verify expected inter-network performance

To these ends, nodes dedicated to ad-hoc bandwidth and latency testing are available at Internet2's Chicago, Seattle, and New York AL2S/AL3S sites, with 10gb/s connections to Internet2's Juniper routers.

The test point host names are:

  • Located at Chicago, IL:
  • Located at Seattle, WA:
  • Located at New York, NY:

In order to help ensure that test results are accurate and meaningful, testing to these nodes must be performed with BWCTL (for throughput testing with iperf, iperf3, or nuttcp) or BWPING (for one- or two-way testing with ping or owamp.) More information on obtaining and installing the required command line tools can be found here.

If you require regularly scheduled, ongoing, inter-network tests, please contact the Internet2 network operations center. While the ad-hoc test points are open for anyone to use, they should be be the basis of an automated test scheme.

If you are interested in the internal performance of Internet2's network, see the PAS continuous measurement services.

Performance Assurance Service

webinar was held on Sept. 16, 2014, describing some of the features of the Performance Assurance Service.


The Internet2 Performance Assurance Service interface is free and available to the public.

See the Participate tab for details on who may participate in a variety of test meshes.


For more information on the Internet2 Performance Assurance Service, browse through these frequently asked questions.

Are the AL2S test points available for ad-hoc testing?

In general, the Advanced Layer 2 Service (AL2S) BWCTL and OWAMP test points are reserved for regular, scheduled testing, both internally and with partner networks. However, ad-hoc testing may be useful:
  • to aid in troubleshooting cross-domain network issues
  • to verify expected inter-network performance
Nodes available for ad-hoc testing are located at:
  • Chicago:
  • Seattle:
  • New York:
If you are experiencing network performance issues that you believe are connected with I2's AL2S or AL3S, please contact the Internet2 NOC for assistance. For more details on ad-hoc testing please see, this link.

What software is used for testing?

The Performance Assurance Service platform is built around the perfSONAR-PS suite, SmokePing, and custom monitoring and measurement tools developed by the Global Network Operations Center at Indiana University.

What is the status of the legacy test points?

Please see this link.

What are the test configurations for internal tests?

DESCRIPTION UDP Throughput (iperf)
TOOL bwctl/iperf
BWTestDuration 20
BWUDPBandwidthLimit 9000m
BWBufferLen 44872
BWWindowSize 96m
BWTestInterval 3600
BWTestIntervalStartAlpha 1
BWReportInterval 1
TOOL powstream

Is a description of the Performance Assurance Service available?

Yes, a webinar was held on Sept. 16, 2014, that included a section describing the Performance Assurance Service. A link to the webinar can be found here.

The Performance Assurance Service dashboard is free and available to the public. Operational monitoring data is not generally available.

Participation in scheduled testing meshes—regular, predefined tests of network performance between your network and AL2S or AL3S—is currently limited to entities who are directly connected to the Internet2 Network. Expansion of this scope is expected, and information will be posted here as appropriate.

Note that participation must be planned and coordinated with Internet2 Network Operations Center (NOC) engineering staff. To set up a scheduled test or ad hoc testing, please contact the NOC at or (317) 278-6622. Requests are handled on a case-by-case basis.

Links to ad hoc test sites will be published as they become available.