Active and Passive Metrics and Methods (with Hybrid Types In-Between)
RFC 7799

Document Type RFC - Informational (May 2016; No errata)
Last updated 2016-05-23
Replaces draft-morton-ippm-active-passive
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Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                         A. Morton
Request for Comments: 7799                                     AT&T Labs
Category: Informational                                         May 2016
ISSN: 2070-1721

                 Active and Passive Metrics and Methods
                     (with Hybrid Types In-Between)

Abstract

   This memo provides clear definitions for Active and Passive
   performance assessment.  The construction of Metrics and Methods can
   be described as either "Active" or "Passive".  Some methods may use a
   subset of both Active and Passive attributes, and we refer to these
   as "Hybrid Methods".  This memo also describes multiple dimensions to
   help evaluate new methods as they emerge.

Status of This Memo

   This document is not an Internet Standards Track specification; it is
   published for informational purposes.

   This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force
   (IETF).  It represents the consensus of the IETF community.  It has
   received public review and has been approved for publication by the
   Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG).  Not all documents
   approved by the IESG are a candidate for any level of Internet
   Standard; see Section 2 of RFC 5741.

   Information about the current status of this document, any errata,
   and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at
   http://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc7799.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2016 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
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Morton                        Informational                     [Page 1]
RFC 7799               Active, Passive and Hybrid               May 2016

Table of Contents

   1. Introduction ....................................................2
      1.1. Requirements Language ......................................3
   2. Purpose and Scope ...............................................3
   3. Terms and Definitions ...........................................3
      3.1. Performance Metric .........................................3
      3.2. Method of Measurement ......................................4
      3.3. Observation Point ..........................................4
      3.4. Active Methods .............................................4
      3.5. Active Metric ..............................................5
      3.6. Passive Methods ............................................5
      3.7. Passive Metric .............................................6
      3.8. Hybrid Methods and Metrics .................................6
   4. Discussion ......................................................8
      4.1. Graphical Representation ...................................8
      4.2. Discussion of PDM .........................................10
      4.3. Discussion of "Coloring" Method ...........................11
      4.4. Brief Discussion of OAM Methods ...........................11
   5. Security Considerations ........................................12
   6. References .....................................................12
      6.1. Normative References ......................................12
      6.2. Informative References ....................................13
   Acknowledgements ..................................................14
   Author's Address ..................................................14

1.  Introduction

   The adjectives "Active" and "Passive" have been used for many years
   to distinguish between two different classes of Internet performance
   assessment.  The first Passive and Active Measurement (PAM)
   Conference was held in 2000, but the earliest proceedings available
   online are from the second PAM conference in 2001
   <https://www.ripe.net/ripe/meetings/pam-2001>.

   The notions of "Active" and "Passive" are well-established.  In
   general:

   o  An Active Metric or Method depends on a dedicated measurement
      packet stream and observations of the stream.

   o  A Passive Metric or Method depends *solely* on observation of one
      or more existing packet streams.  The streams only serve
      measurement when they are observed for that purpose, and are
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