AbstractsComputer Science

Network monitoring with focus on HTTP

by Andreas Schmid

Institution: Oregon State University
Department: Electrical and Computer Engineering
Degree: MS
Year: 1998
Keywords: Local area networks (Computer networks)
Record ID: 1695236
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1957/33850


Since its introduction in the early 1990s, the quick growth of the World Wide Web (WWW) traffic raises the question of whether past Local Area Network (LAN) packet traces still reflect the current situation or whether they have become obsolete. For this thesis, several LAN packet traces were obtained by monitoring the LAN of a typical academic environment. The tools for monitoring the network were a stand-alone HP LAN Protocol Analyzer as well as the free-ware software tool tcpdump. The main focus was placed on acquiring a low-level overview of the LAN traffic. Thus, it was possible to determine what protocols were mainly used and how the packet sizes were distributed. In particular, this study aimed at establishing the amount of WWW traffic on the LAN, and determining the MIME-Types of this traffic. The results indicate that in a typical academic environment, conventional sources of LAN traffic such as NFS are still predominant, whereas WWW traffic plays a rather marginal role. Furthermore, a large portion of the network packets contains little or no data at all, while another significant portion of the packets have sizes around the Maximum Transfer Unit (MTU). Consequently, research in the networking field has to direct its focus on issues beside the WWW.