RIPE Atlas Midsummer 2013 Community Update

Vesna Manojlovic — Jul 01, 2013 01:40 PM
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The RIPE Atlas community has been very active recently. This article highlights new community related features, and announcements related to RIPE Atlas anchor hosts, sponsors and "ambassadors". And it brings you lots of pretty pictures!

While developing RIPE Atlas, we are engaging with the community to get feedback on the features we are working on, and help us with distributing the probes.

A lot has taken place since our last update in April, including many new features, RIPE 66, and lots of growth. The community has been very active, as you will see from this article.

v3 probe (Kjell)

We are now distributing version three of the probe, a modified TP-Link router. More than 1,000 of these new probes were distributed around the world since April, with the help of sponsors and ambassadors!

Please note that these new probes cannot be used as a wireless router, and that the accompanying USB stick must remain inserted in the probe in order for it to function.

Latest Numbers

RIPE Atlas continues to expand its network. As of June 2013, there are:

  • 3,500 active probes (on average, 216 activate each month)
    • 1,270 IPv6-enabled probes
  • 7,500 users (on average, 333 new users each month)
    • 2,700 of these users are RIPE NCC members
  • We have passed 12,000 user-defined measurements in total!

RIPE Atlas Anchors Pilot

Together with the pilot hosts, we continue to develop the RIPE Atlas anchors pilot, which will use enhanced RIPE Atlas probes as regional measurement targets. Currently there are 14 active anchors, with two more coming online shortly.

New features related to anchors include:

  • A webpage explaining more about RIPE Atlas anchors
  • A list of all the anchors as targets
  • A map showing the position of the anchors

List of RIPE Atlas anchors

Figure 1: List of RIPE Atlas anchors

Map of RIPE Atlas anchors Figure 2: Map of RIPE Atlas anchors

We are grateful to all the organisations hosting RIPE Atlas anchors, and are working on displaying their logos on our Community page.

If you are interested in the RIPE Atlas anchor pilot, please join our public mailing list.

RIPE Atlas Ambassadors

There is a lot of interest in RIPE Atlas measurements and the ways they can be used in  various research and analyses.

Thanks to RIPE Atlas "ambassadors", who are spreading the the word about RIPE Atlas and helping us distributing probes, we are able to spread the RIPE Atlas network to farther parts of the world and reach wider communities.

I'd like to mention some of the events where our ambassadors were present:

  • AFNOG, where Randy Bush gave a presentation (RIPE Atlas 101) and distributed 20 probes
  • AIMS 2013, where Nikolay Melnikov gave a hands-on tutorial
  • NANOG, where Comcast staff distributed 150 probes!
  • Fearghas McKey has been very active at the UK events and worldwide

If you would like to distribute RIPE Atlas probes at your event, or if you want to give a presentation about RIPE Atlas, we can support you with slides and printed materials (brochures, stickers, printed instructions).

Please get in touch with us or with other ambassadors! We have a new mailing list specifically dedicated to RIPE Atlas ambassadors.

Map of sponsored probes

If you are sponsoring multiple probes, you can see a map of their locations under "My Atlas" > "My Sponsorship".

Map of sponsored probes

Figure 3: Map of sponsored probes

Activity in RIPE Atlas Community GitHub Repository

Since we created a dedicated RIPE Atlas community GitHub repository, there were 16 commits in total, and RIPE NCC staff added two more directories for the code we published, as described in the RIPE Labs articles Releasing RIPE Atlas Measurements Source Code and RIPE Atlas Code for Analysis and Statistics Reporting.

Two users in particular have been very active (you know who you are). Thanks!

GitHub activity

Figure 4: GitHub activity

We hope this repository helps you create, modify and maintain more code. Please share it and make it more useful for the rest of the world.

Outreach

RIPE NCC staff have also been very active as ambassadors. RIPE Atlas users had the chance to meet Mirjam, Bert, Lia, Marco and several of our trainers at any of the many conferences we've recently attended (regional meetings, NOGs, IXP meetings - too many to mention!).

The RIPE 66 meeting was particularly successful - we gave out 200 probes and 200 t-shirts! There was an update about RIPE Atlas during the MAT Working Group, and many of the present hosts, sponsors, and interested newcomers came to the BoF (Birds of a Feather) session to discuss new features. We are still sorting through all the great feedback we received, and will update the roadmap once we decide on our priorities based on this feedback.

If you missed it, you can watch the videos or download the presentation slides form the archives (scroll down to "MAT").

RIPE Atlas T-shirt

Figure 5: Vesna wearing the latest RIPE Atlas T-shirt

Photos on the Community page

Check out the RIPE Atlas Community page for photos of probes that have travelled the world - and upload your own photo! You can send us photos of probes, T-shirts, or unrelated Atlas-es too :)

Twitter photos

Our users have also been posting photos on Twitter. Check them out!

http://ow.ly/i/24G0f

http://t.co/lO53xmYClL

Articles about RIPE Atlas

  • NLnet Labs blog on "Using PMTUD for a higher DNS responsiveness", quoting "Using RIPE Atlas we were able to send DNS queries to a name server at NLnet Labs from 863 different IPv6 vantage points, all from different networks at different locations in the world.

 

Also on RIPE Labs:

How Many RIPE Atlas Probes Believe They Have IPv6 (But Are Wrong)?

Using RIPE Atlas User Defined Measurements to Find the Most Popular Instances of a DNS Anycast Name Server

Hackerspaces tour

Vesna has been visiting hackerspaces around Europe, giving presentations about RIPE Atlas and distributing probes.

RIPE Atlas probes at hackerspaces.orgFigure 6: RIPE Atlas probes at hackerspaces.org

Currently, there are 27 probes registered at hackerspaces.org, including KIKA in Skopje, TOG in Dublin, Randomdata in Utrecht (who organised a workshop) and two in Amsterdam: Linux Amsterdam Group and Technologia Incognita. RIPE Atlas probe at Technologia Incognita

Figure 7: RIPE Atlas probe in Amsterdam Hackserspace

Join Us at OHM2013

We hope to see you at the Dutch hackers camping conference, "Observe. Hack. Make.", where you'll have a chance to meet your Community Builder and some of the RIPE Atlas users, take part in the workshop, ask questions, request new features, and give your feedback.

    Feedback

    We look forward to hearing from you!

    If you would like to give us your input or ask questions:

    • Please subscribe to the RIPE Atlas mailing list for active users, which is also followed and answered by developers: ripe-atlas [at] ripe [dot] net
    • Reach us on our dedicated RIPE Atlas Twitter account @RIPE_Atlas!
    • If you want to report a bug or problem: atlas [at] ripe [dot] net
      • For direct feedback: Contact Vesna Manojlovic, Senior Community Builder, at becha [at] ripe [dot] net or @Ms_Measurements (#RIPEAtlas)

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