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Measuring End-to-End Internet Service Performance: Response Time, Caching Efficiency and QoS

Cherkasova, Ludmila; Fu, Yun; Tang, Wenting; Vahdat, Amin

HPL-2002-148

Keyword(s): web server performance, end-to-end response time; passive monitoring technique; client observed response time; TCP traces; case studies

Abstract: Understanding and measuring end-to-end service performance perceived by the clients is a challenging task. Client-perceived web site responses are downloaded web pages. Typically, a web page is composed from multiple objects: a main HTML file and several embedded objects such as images. However, HTTP does not provide any means to delimit the beginning or the end of a web page to effectively measure the overall response time for web page retrieval. This paper presents, EtE monitor, a novel approach to measuring web site performance. Our system passively collects packet traces from a server site to determine service performance characteristics. We introduce a two-pass heuristic and a statistical filtering mechanism to accurately reconstruct different client page accesses and to measure performance characteristics integrated across all client accesses. Relative to existing approaches, EtE monitor offers the following benefits: i) a latency breakdown between the network and server overhead of retrieving a web page, ii) longitudinal information for all client accesses, not just the subset probed by a third party, iii) characteristics of accesses that are aborted by clients, and iv) quantification of the benefits of network and browser caches on server performance. Our initial implementation and performance analysis across three different commercial web sites confirm the utility of our approach. Notes: Short version of this paper was accepted for publication in USENIX 2002

32 Pages

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