Suzanne Taylor

RIPE Atlas: Measurements With Tagged Probes Coming Soon

Suzanne Taylor
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We've been busy working on a number of developments, and we're really excited about one in particular that will be ready soon: creating customised measurements using tagged probes. Learn more about it - along with some other recent additions - and let us know what you think.

Coming Soon: Creating Measurements Using Tagged Probes

Would you like to measure your network from IPv6-only home connections? That’s just one of many tailored measurements that RIPE Atlas users will soon be able to perform thanks to the newly introduced “tagging” feature . We're going to have a beta version of this new functionality ready in time for the RIPE Meeting in London this November . But to make this as useful as possible, we need your help in tagging your probes!

Anyone who hosts a RIPE Atlas probe can tag their probe with different categories and properties, such as “home”, “data centre”, "fibre", "DSL", "cable", “NAT”, “No NAT”, etc. We've also introduced a new feature called “system tags” to probes. These tags, which are added automatically by the RIPE Atlas system, include whether the probes are working or not over IPv4 and IPv6, their DNS resolution ability, and which generation (version) the probe is. These are fully managed by the system, so users cannot add or remove them. Right now system tags are in beta stage. We're still tweaking the settings based on our own experiences and user feedback, so be sure to tell us what you think.

tagged probes RIPE Atlas users have started tagging their probes, but more tagging is needed

Now, we're working to allow RIPE Atlas users to make use of these tags when creating their own customised measurements, choosing exactly which types of probes they want to use. Users will be able to query for both types of tags - user tags and system tags - when selecting probes for their measurements, which means you'll be able to create measurements tailored specifically to your individual needs.

However, this new feature will only be as useful as you, the users, make it. The greater the number of RIPE Atlas probe hosts who apply tags to their probes, the more everyone will benefit. So if you host a probe, now's the time to tag it! You can get creative and add as many tags as you want. You’ll be helping to turn RIPE Atlas into the most useful active Internet measurement network possible.

Improved API Keys Management

If you’re not already familiar with the RIPE Atlas API and creating API keys, you may want to check out the improved API keys manager (and its documentation ) which makes them easier to use. API keys allow you to create measurements without logging in through the web interface, and securely share your measurement data with others.

It’s also now possible to delete API keys (until now, they could only be disabled).

We'll keep the old API keys manager available for now, too, to give you a chance to test out the new system and get used to it.

Historical Metadata

We’re also working to provide RIPE Atlas users with more metadata. One feature that's already available is historical probe metadata. This is a list of probes that existed within the RIPE Atlas network on a particular date. Users can access this data via the REST API .

New Firmware and Bug Fixes

We deployed a new firmware with some bug fixes. Please see the Announcements page for more details.

More Future Plans

In the coming months, we’ll focus on creating more data visualisations and making system more accessible to users. In particular, we want to tap into RIPE Atlas’ data flow to provide users with information about network health or measurement results in near real-time. We’ve already starting experimenting with real-time data visualisation, and we want to know what you think and what would be most useful for you in your own operations or research.

Tell Us What You Think

We always want to hear about any ways in which we could make RIPE Atlas even more useful, so please let us know your thoughts. You can find out what we've recently done, what's currently being developed and what's coming up in the RIPE Atlas Roadmap .

  • Join the discussion on Twitter: @RIPE_Atlas
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About the author

Suzanne Taylor is a Public Policy & Internet Governance Consultant. In her work with the RIPE NCC, she engages with a broad range of Internet stakeholders including the RIPE NCC membership, governments, law enforcement and intergovernmental organisations. From 2012 to 2016, she worked in communications at the RIPE NCC and has previously worked as a journalist and in media relations and science communications.

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