TCP live: Experiential learning on the global internet

C. Allison, A. Miller, K. Getchell, I. Oliver, A. Morrey

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Providing support for experiential learning about computer networking poses difficulties for both students and lecturers: the low level nature of network programming and monitoring requires systems-level skills that are often absent in undergraduates; the time available in any given module is limited; the view from the classpsilas laboratory is constrained by firewalls and provides only one perspective onto the Internet; the adaptive nature of TCP is often invisible when seen only on a LAN. We have sought to address these challenges by exploiting Planet Lab ( for educational purposes. Planet Lab is a networking research facility consisting of nodes at over 400 sites across the world, which are exempt from institutional firewall restrictions, and which are shareable amongst all members. We have developed a framework with an appropriate set of graphical user interfaces that runs on Planet Lab and allows students to experiment with core Internet protocols. TCP Live is a particular application that uses the framework. This paper describes the structure of the framework and its use to support experiential learning about TCP.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFrontiers in Education Conference, 2008. FIE 2008. 38th Annual
Place of PublicationSaratoga Springs, NY
PagesT3C-1 - T3C-6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2008


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