Mercury: Revealing Hidden Interconnections Between Access ISPs and Content Providers

  • Manuel Palacin
  • Alex Bikfalvi
  • Miquel Oliver
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8846)


Knowing the detailed topology of the Internet at the Autonomous System (AS) level is extremely valuable for both researchers and industry when making network policies. Although there are many measurement projects and databases that provide this information, such as ARK, RETRO, ONO and PeeringDB, they only offer a partial view for analyzing end-to-end Internet routing paths and they do not focus on the hidden direct interconnections between Access ISPs and Content Providers. In order to address these shortcomings, we present Mercury, a web platform focused on the AS-level interconnection between content providers and content consumers. Mercury enables users to visualize the AS topology, aggregating data from traceroute measurements of participants and AS information from several databases. The advantage of Mercury is that it discovers how operators connect to other organizations and how content providers organize their server’s infrastructure (CDN) to reach their target audience. To this end, Mercury identifies Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) and AS relationships along an Internet path and presents this information via a web site and a built-in API. We evaluate its potential probing a dataset of 100 popular web URLs from the major Spanish ISPs and we successfully identify many direct interconnections that were hidden for other methodologies.


Autonomous System Content Provider Content Delivery Cache Server Internet Topology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was partially supported by the Spanish government, through the project CISNETS (TEC2012-32354).


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Networking Technology and Strategies (NeTS) Research GroupUniversitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF)BarcelonaSpain

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