This page attempts to draw a comparison between perfSONAR and other popular performance monitoring and measurement systems. The summary may help to decide if perfSONAR will suit one’s needs. Although this description can be useful, first-hand experience is probably the best way to compare different systems.

perfSONAR vs. RIPE Atlas

  perfSONAR RIPE Atlas
Description Network measurement toolkit designed to provide federated coverage of network paths. It provides an interface that allows for the scheduling of measurements, storage of data and generate visualizations. Active measurement network from the RIPE NCC. It consists of measurement probes that run measurements in the RIPE Atlas system and report results to the central data collection components.
Type of Measurements Throughput (TCP and UDP), round-trip time, one-way delay, one-way packet loss, network path RTT to the first and second hops, ping to predetermined destinations, traceroute to predetermined destinations, DNS queries to root DNS servers, SSL queries to predetermined destinations.
User-Defined Scheduled Measurements Yes Yes; Limited by a system of credits based on participation
On-demand Measurements Yes Yes; Limited by a system of credits based on participation
Incoming Measurement Control Yes; site-programmable No
Measurement Target Control Yes; site-programmable Only to pre-defined RIPE hosts or other Atlas probes
Type of Distribution Software Hardware
Measurement Data Storage Distribution Local or central; many archive types Central
Measurement Data Storage Architecture Data stored in user infrastructure Data stored in service provider infrastructure
Access to Archive Measurements Local or central web interface Central web interface

perfSONAR vs. SamKnows

  perfSONAR SamKnows
Description Network measurement toolkit designed to provide federated coverage of network paths. It provides an interface that allows for the scheduling of measurements, storage of data and generate visualizations. Probes for the measuring end-user broadband performance (fixed-line and mobile). They execute a series of software tests over their broadband connection they are connected to. The results of these tests are reported securely up to hosted backend infrastructure.
Type of Measurements Throughput (TCP and UDP), round-trip time, one-way delay, one-way packet loss, network path Multi-threaded HTTP download speed, multi-threaded HTTP based upload speed, availability of the connection, jitter, latency (ICMP and UDP), packet loss (ICMP and UDP), DNS query resolution time, DNS query failure rate, web page loading time, web page loading failure rate, Video streaming performance.
User-Defined Scheduled Measurements Yes No
On-demand Measurements Yes No
Incoming Measurement Control Yes; site-programmable No
Measurement Target Control Yes; site-programmable Pre-defined hosts
Type of Distribution Software Software and hardware
Measurement Data Storage Distribution Local or central; many archive types Central
Measurement Data Storage Architecture Data stored in user infrastructure Data stored in service provider infrastructure
Access to Archive Measurements Local or central web interface Central web interface

perfSONAR vs. NLNOG RING

  perfSONAR NLNOG RING
Description Network measurement toolkit designed to provide federated coverage of network paths. It provides an interface that allows for the scheduling of measurements, storage of data and generate visualizations. The infrastructure of (virtual) machines available to its participants. It offers ssh access to all servers which are part of the project to run custom scripts executing commands on all or a subset of the servers. These scripts run from own machine or from one of other nodes.
Type of Measurements Throughput (TCP and UDP), round-trip time, one-way delay, one-way packet loss, network path RTT, traceroute, ssh and system tools from predetermined destinations to any other host.
User-Defined Scheduled Measurements Yes No
On-demand Measurements Yes Yes
Incoming Measurement Control Yes; site-programmable No
Measurement Target Control Yes; site-programmable Other RING hosts
Type of Distribution Software Software
Measurement Data Storage Distribution Local or central; many archive types N/A
Measurement Data Storage Architecture Data stored in user infrastructure N/A
Access to Archive Measurements Local or central web interface N/A