Locating internet routing instabilities

  • Authors:
  • Anja Feldmann;Olaf Maennel;Z. Morley Mao;Arthur Berger;Bruce Maggs

  • Affiliations:
  • TU-München;TU-München;University of Michigan;MIT/Akamai Technologies;CMU/Akamai Technologies

  • Venue:
  • Proceedings of the 2004 conference on Applications, technologies, architectures, and protocols for computer communications
  • Year:
  • 2004

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This paper presents a methodology for identifying the autonomous system (or systems) responsible when a routing change is observed and propagated by BGP. The origin of such a routing instability is deduced by examining and correlating BGP updates for many prefixes gathered at many observation points. Although interpreting BGP updates can be perplexing, we find that we can pinpoint the origin to either a single AS or a session between two ASes in most cases. We verify our methodology in two phases. First, we perform simulations on an AS topology derived from actual BGP updates using routing policies that are compatible with inferred peering/customer/provider relationships. In these simulations, in which network and router behavior are "ideal", we inject inter-AS link failures and demonstrate that our methodology can effectively identify most origins of instability. We then develop several heuristics to cope with the limitations of the actual BGP update propagation process and monitoring infrastructure, and apply our methodology and evaluation techniques to actual BGP updates gathered at hundreds of observation points. This approach of relying on data from BGP simulations as well as from measurements enables us to evaluate the inference quality achieved by our approach under ideal situations and how it is correlated with the actual quality and the number of observation points.