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The Observatory

The Observatory

It’s nice to have a gut feel about something. But it’s even better to have data!

Through projects, data collections and data views, the Internet2 Observatory offers an integrated data archive of  Internet2 Network performance and status information to support researchers who wish to study an operational network in a way not possible in a laboratory environment or on the commercial Internet.

The Internet2 Observatory supports the development of an integrated data archive of the performance and network status information collected on the Internet2 Network with the aim of providing information to researchers who wish to study an operational network in a way not possible in a laboratory environment or on the commercial Internet. The Internet2 Observatory project—originally envisioned as part of the third generation Internet2 Network upgrade, and just as integral to following generations—provides a significant level of support for the network research community at Internet2 member universities. In addition, the Observatory provides for the collocation of network experiments and measurement servers developed by the research community.

Research Projects

The research projects associated with the Observatory are organized into two different types: 1) Projects using data collected by Internet2 Network engineers, using equipment located in the nodes and operated by the NOC, and 2) Data collected by separate research projects using their own equipment collocated in the network racks.

Proposal Process

Data collected by network engineers using equipment located in the nodes and operated by the NOC is open to all research projects and is available either online or through special arrangement. Data is also collected by separate research projects using equipment collocated in network nodes. This opportunity is open to all Internet2 members (higher education, industry or affiliate) and is based on competitive proposals. The goal is to provide the research community with a vehicle for basic network research, and all research results are expected to be open to the public through the process of peer review. Proposals for or questions about collocation research projects should be submitted to rs@internet2.edu. (See also Hosted Research Program.)

Data Collections

The Internet2 Observatory data collections reside on a variety of different databases that are available online through a variety of programmatic interfaces. Taken as a whole, the databases comprise a large correlated database for use by the research community. Data collections include the following types of Internet2 Network data: usage, netflow, routing, latency, throughput, router, syslog, and topology. For more information, email rs@internet2.edu.

Data Views

A collection of views of the network data collected by network engineers through the Observatory project is available. The views provide an overall picture of how the network performs. Drilling down on daily graphs, users can obtain a “day in the life of the Internet2 Network.” Visualization tools are available through perfSONAR to view data collected by perfSONAR-enabled tools. For more information, email rs@internet2.edu.

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How does the Internet2 Observatory support the needs of the network research community?

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