Measuring and Characterizing End-to-End Route Dynamics in the Presence of Load Balancing

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Abstract

Since Paxson’s study over ten years ago, the Internet has changed considerably. In particular, routers often perform load balancing. Disambiguating routing changes from load balancing using traceroute-like probing requires a large number of probes. Our first contribution is FastMapping, a probing method that exploits load balancing characteristics to reduce the number of probes needed to measure accurate route dynamics. Our second contribution is to reappraise Paxson’s results using datasets with high-frequency route measurements and complete load balancing information. Our analysis shows that, after removing dynamics due to load balancing, Paxson’s observations on route prevalence and persistence still hold.