Trajectory sampling for direct traffic observation Academic Article uri icon


  • Traffic measurement is a critical component for the control and engineering of communication networks. We argue that traffic measurement should make it possible to obtain the spatial flow of traffic through the domain, i.e., the paths followed by packets between any ingress and egress point of the domain. Most resource allocation and capacity planning tasks can benefit from such information. Also, traffic measurements should be obtained without a routing model and without knowledge of network state. This allows the traffic measurement process to be resilient to network failures and state uncertainty. We propose a method that allows the direct inference of traffic flows through a domain by observing the trajectories of a subset of all packets traversing the network. The key advantages of the method are that 1) it does not rely on routing state; 2) its implementation cost is small; and 3) the measurement reporting traffic is modest and can be controlled precisely. The key idea of the method is to sample packets based on a hash function computed over the packet content. Using the same hash function will yield the same sample set of packets in the entire domain, and enables us to reconstruct packet trajectories.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Duffield, N. G., & Grossglauser, M.

complete list of authors

  • Duffield, NG||Grossglauser, M

publication date

  • January 1, 2001 11:11 AM