The goal of DiffProbe is to detect if an ISP is classifying certain kinds of traffic as "low priority", providing different levels of service for them. DiffProbe actively (and non-intrusively) probes the network path and tries to diagnose the nature and extent of traffic discrimination. This page presents a module of DiffProbe, called ShaperProbe. ShaperProbe tries to answer the question:
We detect traffic shaping, which means that the customer gets a large rate for a certain number of bytes, and then the rate is dropped automatically to a lower value. If a user gets rate limited for certain time periods, he/she can detect that observing the capacity estimates given by ShaperProbe.
Is the ISP shaping my traffic? In other words, is my "connection speed" dropped automatically to a low rate after some time?
DiffProbe's ShaperProbe makes use of the Measurement Lab (M-Lab) research platform. To learn more, go here. In order to advance network research, all collected data will be made publicly accessible.
January '12: new version released.
November '09: beta version released.
We currently support clients on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux platforms.
Old versions: Windows (binary), MAC OS X (binary), Linux (source).
Running: On Windows, double-click the executable. On MAC OS X, double-click the disk-image to mount, and then double-click the binary.
Compiling and running: The client needs the following library to compile: glibc. On Ubuntu and Debian Linux, this library is available in the package libc6-dev.
You probably already have this package if you have compiled code on your machine before.
After extracting the archive, compile and run ShaperProbe:
In order to compile on MAC OS X, do
make -f Makefile.osx
The following is an example output, not taken from any particular ISP:
DiffProbe alpha release. April 2009.
Shaper Detection Module.
Connected to server 18.104.22.168.
Upstream: 10800.39 Kbps.
Downstream: 37127.07 Kbps.
Checking for traffic shapers:
Upstream: Burst size: 5402 KB; Shaping rate: 1008.00 Kbps.
sending measurement data to server..done.
Downstream: No shaper detected.
For more information, visit: http://www.cc.gatech.edu/~partha/diffprobe
The tool starts by estimating the path's capacity. This is followed by detection of traffic shaping on the path in both upstream and downstream directions.
Burst size: ...; Shaping rate: ...: This quantifies the traffic shaping (if any) done by the ISP at the time of measurement. Shaping rate is the rate-limiting rate.
All servers are busy or
Cannot connect to server. Server may be busy; please try in a few minutes.: For measurement accuracy, our servers currently support only one client at a time. Please retry in a few minutes. Also verify that your firewall has ports TCP 55000 (outgoing), TCP 55005 (outgoing), and UDP 55005 (both directions) open. The tool works fine over a NAT (likely, if you are a home user).
Incompatible server. Please download the latest version of DiffProbe client.: It is likely that your platform is not yet supported by ShaperProbe. Please try the version on this page, or if possible, please let us know by sending a mail to the address below.