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Innovation

Akamai provides new visibility into Internet comings and goings

Users can also view monitors that show Internet usage worldwide by interest area: retail, music, and news. This comes from data that is assembled by Akamai from its own Web monitoring. Another link to "Visualize Akamai" shows active streams, HTTP hits per second, and visitors per minute.
Written by Dana Gardner, Contributor on

The browsing public can now get a free, real-time peek into the operating statistics for Internet network traffic, as well as monitor attack traffic and latency snafus, thanks to Akamai Technologies, Inc.

Akamai, which maintains a globally distributed platform to cache and accelerate online content, media and applications, this week launched its Real Time Web Monitor to offers three visualizations that give users a graphical picture of Internet health worldwide.

"It's easy to take for granted that the Internet will always be on and always working," said Prof. Tom Leighton, Akamai co-founder and chief scientist. "Reality shows us that there are many factors on any given day degrading the Internet's performance."

The three monitors, which users can toggle between with on-screen buttons, sport interactive settings, allowing users to customize data.

The new monitors include:

  • Attack Traffic: Displays real-time attacks by geographic region -- state, province, or country -- based on data from scanning randomly generated IP addresses to chart the number of connections attempted and packets captured from Trojans and worms.

  • Network Traffic: Monitors the amount of data being requested and delivered in any geographic region at any time, with online displays of the top 10 regions with the most traffic.

  • Latency/Speed: Measures latency between major cities using automated tests, including the 10 worst cities, indicating absolute latency (current status) and relative latency (difference between the current status and the historical average latency).

As the old saying at the mission goes: If you're going to eat the meal, you've got to listen to the sermon. A pull-down menu at the top of the screen will bring users to network performance monitors that show how Akamai can help work around the speed and latency, as well as lost-packet, issues and indicates this with a straight line connecting user-designated cities. Non-Akamai use is depicted with a curved line, marked with "X"s that represent lost packets.

Users can also view monitors that show Internet usage worldwide by interest area: retail, music, and news. This comes from data that is assembled by Akamai from its own Web monitoring. Another link to "Visualize Akamai" shows active streams, HTTP hits per second, and visitors per minute.

The new Internet health views come just weeks after a spate of attacks in the Baltic region caused concern over a possible ramp-up in strategic or militaristic web attacks.

Disclosure: Akamai is or has been a sponsor of BriefingsDirect B2B podcasts.

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