In this assignment, you are to collect packet traces of a real-time, interactive, multi-player game, and study the basic characteristic of network traffic from the game. This assignment helps us understand what game traffic looks like (does it need a lot of bandwidth? Are packets being sent frequently? What is the size of packets being sent?) This is important for us to understand how the existing game protocol works, and will help us see the inadequacy of existing transport protocol in supporting most games.
31 January, 2015 (Saturday), 2359
A 5-page report in PDF format, to be submitted into this IVLE workbin, with the filename A1_A0123456X.pdf, where A0123456X is your matriculation number.
This is an individual assignment.
- A+/A/A-: Correct, detailed, and careful analysis. Correctly collected, and characterized in detail, the traces as required. The report is detailed, well structured and well written.
- B+/B/B-: Lack details. Correctly collected traces, but may lack attention to detail; Only basic analysis is done. The report lack details.
- C+/C/C-: Incomplete/incorrect. The collection is incomplete; Analysis is incorrect; Report is incomplete or hastily written.
- F: No submission.
Your task is to collect and analyze packet traces of a real-time, interactive, multi-player game of your choice. You should collect the traces at the client-side using tcpdump or equivalent tools (e.g., wireshark). The traces should be at least 10 minutes long, and involves different types of game activity (e.g., running, walking, shooting, interacting with other players).
From the traces that you collected, analyze the packets and characterize the traffic in terms of the following:
- What is the average in-coming and out-going throughput (bytes / second)?
- What is the average in-coming and out-going packet load (number of packets / second)?
- What are the transport protocols used? (UDP, or TCP, or both?)
- How many connections do you see?
- What are the distributions of the payload size for in-coming and out-going packets? (Plot a histogram) What is the average payload size?
- Any patterns observed when the game activity changes?
- Any periodic patterns (i.e., things that occur at regular interval) observed in the traffic? You may have to zoom into millisecond level to observe this pattern.
The packets captured may include multiple types of data (such as audio chat). You may exclude those from your analysis (if possible). Focus only on game traffic pertaining to events and state updates.
In your report, you should describe clearly how you collect the data.
The following tools might be useful for this assignment:
- tcpdump / windump
You are free to use any other tools you are familiar with to analyze the packet trace.
You can pick any FPS, RTS, or MMORPG game you like, as long as it is a real-time multi-player games. If you do not own/play games, try to borrow it from a classmate who does. Furthermore, there are many free multi-player games available.
You can use any tools you like, such as R, MatLab, Microsoft Excel, Gnuplot, etc.
You should use this Word document template for your report, but feel free add your own sections/structure if you find this template limiting.
Late Submission Policy
One grade lower (e.g., A becomes A-, A- becomes B+) if you are late by a day. Two grades lower if you are late by two days, etc.
If you have issues with meeting the deadline, talk to me BEFORE the deadline for a possibility of an extension.