The purpose of our study was to understand how to measure end-to-end packet loss characteristics accurately with probes and in a way that enables us to specify the impact on the bottleneck queue. We began by evaluating the capabilities of simple Poisson-modulated probing in a controlled laboratory environment consisting of commodity end hosts and IP routers.
Measurement and estimation of packet loss characteristics are challenging due to the relatively rare occurrence and typically short duration of packet loss episodes. Measuring and analyzing network traffic dynamics between end hosts has provided the foundation for the development of many different network protocols and systems. Of particular importance understands packet loss behavior since loss can have a significant impact on the performance of both TCP- and UDP-based applications.