reverse_traceroute-nsdi10

reverse_traceroute-nsdi10 - Reverse traceroute Ethan...

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Reverse traceroute Ethan Katz-Bassett * Harsha V. Madhyastha Vijay Kumar Adhikari Colin Scott * Justine Sherry * Peter van Wesep * Thomas Anderson * Arvind Krishnamurthy * Abstract Traceroute is the most widely used Internet diagnos- tic tool today. Network operators use it to help identify routing failures, poor performance, and router misconfig- urations. Researchers use it to map the Internet, predict performance, geolocate routers, and classify the perfor- mance of ISPs. However, traceroute has a fundamental limitation that affects all these applications: it does not provide reverse path information. Although various pub- lic traceroute servers across the Internet provide some visibility, no general method exists for determining a re- verse path from an arbitrary destination. In this paper, we address this longstanding limitation by building a reverse traceroute system. Our system pro- vides the same information as traceroute, but for the re- verse path, and it works in the same case as traceroute, when the user may lack control of the destination. We use a variety of measurement techniques to incrementally piece together the path from the destination back to the source. We deploy our system on PlanetLab and compare reverse traceroute paths with traceroutes issued from the destinations. In the median case our tool finds 87% of the hops seen in a directly measured traceroute along the same path, versus only 38% if one simply assumes the path is symmetric, a common fallback given the lack of available tools. We then illustrate how we can use our reverse traceroute system to study previously unmeasur- able aspects of the Internet: we present a case study of how a content provider could use our tool to troubleshoot poor path performance, we uncover more than a thousand peer-to-peer AS links invisible to current topology map- ping efforts, and we measure the latency of individual backbone links with average error under a millisecond. 1 Introduction Traceroute is a simple and widely used Internet diagnos- tic tool. It measures the sequence of routers from the source to the destination, supplemented by round-trip de- lays to each hop. Operators use it to investigate routing failures and performance problems [39]. Researchers use it as the basis for Internet maps [1, 22, 34], path predic- tion [22], geolocation [42, 14], ISP performance analy- sis [25], and anomaly detection [46, 19, 44, 43]. However, traceroute has a fundamental limitation – it * Dept. of Computer Science, Univ. of Washington, Seattle. Dept. of Computer Science, Univ. of California, San Diego. Dept. of Computer Science, Univ. of Minnesota. provides no reverse path information, despite the fact that policy routing and traffic engineering mean that paths are generally asymmetric [15]. As Richard Steenbergen, CTO for nLayer Communications, put it at a recent tuto- rial for network operators on troubleshooting, “the num- ber one go-to tool is traceroute,” but “asymmetric paths [are] the number one plague of traceroute” because “the reverse path itself is completely invisible” [39].
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reverse_traceroute-nsdi10 - Reverse traceroute Ethan...

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