What Is Our Mission At iThena?

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Profile Cesium_133*

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Message 27 - Posted: 27 Sep 2019, 9:48:37 UTC

I can't find much in the way of information as to what the purpose of iThena is.

I joined on the assumption that we would be performing good science here. I still am sure we are :) Just would like to be informed as to the course and intention of our shared scientific journey... :)
The wonderful lady on my profile is Hayley Westenra- the finest classical soprano on the face of the earth. I highly recommend her music-

Ceterum censeo Carthaginem delendam esse...
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Message 36 - Posted: 27 Sep 2019, 16:59:15 UTC

This week I will develop a project description.
I will post information in this forum thread.
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Message 40 - Posted: 29 Sep 2019, 23:05:27 UTC

Well ...
I didn't have enough time to complete the website 'About iThena' during the weekend.
In the next week I will do it ;)
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Profile Michael Goetz
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Message 41 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 2:06:17 UTC - in response to Message 40.  

Well ...
I didn't have enough time to complete the website 'About iThena' during the weekend.
In the next week I will do it ;)


Considering you're asking people to donate their computer time to you, for nothing in return, how about sparing a minute or two for a couple of sentences on the forum?

What does your project do?

* It analyzes protein structures
* It factors large numbers
* It solves chess problems
* it's solving n-body orbital mechanics problems

See?, It's not that difficult.

It's also not that difficult to click on "No New Work"
Want to find one of the largest known primes? Try PrimeGrid. Or help cure disease at WCG.

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Message 42 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 3:03:25 UTC

Two sentences of the project description are available from the very beginning:

The iThena distributed project concerns experimental mapping of network structures included in the Internet. The project is in closed beta phase. Currently, the only application available in the project (iThena CNode) performs a sequence of traceroute procedures from client computers. The resulting data is sent back to the server and submitted to the main database, where it can be further analyzed.

Network structure mapping summaries will be available online.

Simple data visualisation: http://root.ithena.net:8080.
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Profile Michael Goetz
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Message 43 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 4:59:26 UTC - in response to Message 42.  
Last modified: 30 Sep 2019, 5:11:16 UTC

Two sentences of the project description are available from the very beginning:

The iThena distributed project concerns experimental mapping of network structures included in the Internet. The project is in closed beta phase. Currently, the only application available in the project (iThena CNode) performs a sequence of traceroute procedures from client computers. The resulting data is sent back to the server and submitted to the main database, where it can be further analyzed.

Network structure mapping summaries will be available online.

Simple data visualisation: http://root.ithena.net:8080.


Thank you.

In 2008 there was a BOINC project called Depspid (wayback link: https://web.archive.org/web/20071222092002/http://www.depspid.net/). Depspid used BOINC hosts to crawl the Internet to essentially create some sort of map. Is iThena similar to that? It doesn't consume CPU, but instead is using network resources?

If iThena is indeed similar to Depspid (i.e., the app is constantly sending outgoing traffic to the Internet), I'm curious how you avoided the pitfalls (reverse DDOS) that affected Depspid?
Want to find one of the largest known primes? Try PrimeGrid. Or help cure disease at WCG.

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Message 44 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 6:12:29 UTC

Many thanks for the link!
I didn't know this project;)
A valuable source of information.

Depspid worked a little differently and had different purposes - if I understand correctly after reading the information quickly.
Depspid mapped domains / subdomains / sites / directories etc.
iThena is currently mapping the logical / physical structure of hops limiting itself to IPv4 addresses (in theory DNS should not be very involved but in my software there is probably a bug).

The current application (only one) uses the network. This is not sooooo great use when we run one application.

Over time, I may add more computational applications. However, this is a more distant future.
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Message 45 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 6:13:05 UTC

This is a very quick answer - I will send more information soon.
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Message 46 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 6:58:39 UTC - in response to Message 44.  

Many thanks for the link!
I didn't know this project;)
A valuable source of information.

Depspid worked a little differently and had different purposes - if I understand correctly after reading the information quickly.
Depspid mapped domains / subdomains / sites / directories etc.
iThena is currently mapping the logical / physical structure of hops limiting itself to IPv4 addresses (in theory DNS should not be very involved but in my software there is probably a bug).

The current application (only one) uses the network. This is not sooooo great use when we run one application.

Over time, I may add more computational applications. However, this is a more distant future.


Let me give you a little warning about DepSpid. It was an interesting and fun BOINC project -- but it was also VERY dangerous. It wasn't malicious, but running it had some serious and not-so-obvious risks.

Running it on one computer worked just fine.

Running it on two or three computers could swamp my home's Internet connection. Essentially, although it was working as intended, it had the same effect as a DDOS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack against your own network. My house has wired gigabit ethernet and at that time my Internet connection was probably about 30Mb down and 10MB up. You do the math. :)

Some users have access to data centers full of servers and have legitimate authority to run BOINC on those servers. If they run an app similar to DepSpid on a lot of computers, they will bring their company's Internet connection to a grinding halt. That might affect their employment status, obviously, but there's also potential risk for you. Depending on the damage that is done, you (or your employer) may find yourself on the wrong side of a lawsuit in some court somewhere. In some jurisdictions you might even face criminal liability. In this scenario, the argument would probably be that software which you created and distributed caused financial harm to company X. It's not an unreasonable argument.

What really sucks is that I don't think there's an easy fix for this. Making the network access slower doesn't really help because there's always going to be someone with a lot more computers and/or a much slower Internet connection.

Please keep this in mind. People running this kind of app can inadvertently cause serious network disruptions. In my case, I had to deal with my kids complaining about the Internet being slow. That's much better than having a really awkward talk with my boss about how the network problems of the last day or two were traced back to that BOINC thing they let me run on computers "for science." :)
Want to find one of the largest known primes? Try PrimeGrid. Or help cure disease at WCG.

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Message 48 - Posted: 30 Sep 2019, 8:34:55 UTC

You are right.
The current procedure slows down the client's link.
This can be problematic.
I am aware of the problem.
Packages, however, go for different targets (conceptually in a random pool).
There is no question of targeting a particular host (impossible event).
(Currently there is a problem with DNS load - I remember that).

Being in a company you can start many machines with different priority on a company computer and also harm the company.
There is no rule for this.
You don't need iThena app at all.

The possibilities of this application are very limited.

However, I think that if someone consciously knows the realities, they will not launch 100,000 applications simultaneously.
Equally, wget may be harmful.
Depends on the user.

A valuable thread.
I have to add a sentence with proper attention.
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Message 61 - Posted: 2 Oct 2019, 2:28:23 UTC
Last modified: 2 Oct 2019, 2:42:14 UTC

Any idea how this was different than netdimes.org? https://web.archive.org/web/20170919072818/http://www.netdimes.org/new/ Last I consulted the admin of that project, they had stopped with the research and moved it to a private company. IIRC

Netdimes was an NCI application that had its own client and was not a BOINC project.

My other thought was surveil@home but it had a different agenda - https://web.archive.org/web/20140211221835/http://surveill.dei.uc.pt/surveill/
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Message 62 - Posted: 2 Oct 2019, 12:48:56 UTC

Yes. Netdimes is significantly ideologically closer at this moment.
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Message 65 - Posted: 3 Oct 2019, 2:20:26 UTC - in response to Message 62.  
Last modified: 3 Oct 2019, 2:45:33 UTC

I used to email back and forth with Ido Blutman who was one of the programmers but he stopped replying around 2014 and I think my last attempt to contact him was 2015. However, I would have to look through maybe another email account at work to see my last response from someone involved that explained them moving on. If you are interested in picking any of their brains of course. I think their client required Java. Not sure what yours requires. However, I don't recall their app wreaking havoc on the network and I ran over a hundred clients for them. https://stats.free-dc.org/user/dimes/Coleslaw

Edit: Looking through my installation backups, I actually still have a copy of their older 0.5.5.3 agent (client) for Windows. IIRC it worked much better than their last relase...lol.

For some screenshots, we had a few how-to's for setting up the client.
Windows - https://hardforum.com/threads/dimes-installation-walk-through.1768712/
Ubuntu - (no longer has pics) https://hardforum.com/threads/dimes-ubuntu-installation-guide.1804110/
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Message 112 - Posted: 6 Nov 2019, 7:07:27 UTC - in response to Message 65.  

After 12 years of operations, we could not fund DIMES and moved on. Ido left the university, and I myself still doing hundreds of millions of traceroute a week from dedicated servers and use them to identify IP hijack attacks.

DIMES contributed to the science of networking by sharing freely its data, which was used by many academians in papers. The papers I published with this data can be found in http://www.eng.tau.ac.il/~shavitt/Mapping.html
Among them,
The first paper that describe the project: http://www.eng.tau.ac.il/~shavitt/pub/CCR05.pdf
A nice analysis: http://www.eng.tau.ac.il/~shavitt/pub/PNAS07.pdf
and a recent paper that looks at IP hijack attacks: https://scholarcommons.usf.edu/mca/vol3/iss1/7/

I will be happy to help on this project, and would strongly encourage you to make the data available to the community.

Yuval Shavitt
Tel Aviv University
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Message 115 - Posted: 8 Nov 2019, 18:51:22 UTC - in response to Message 112.  

Hi Yuval!
Many thanks for the message!
I think we can cooperate.
I probably have a lot of questions.
I will send you a message today on priv ;)
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Message 117 - Posted: 9 Nov 2019, 10:47:10 UTC - in response to Message 112.  


and a recent paper that looks at IP hijack attacks: https://scholarcommons.usf.edu/mca/vol3/iss1/7/

A very interesting problem.
New article (2018).
China still has 8 POPs in the US, and the US in China exactly zero?
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Message 190 - Posted: 27 Nov 2019, 21:04:34 UTC - in response to Message 61.  

There was a reason DIMES was not using BOINC. We cared about what agent get which task and this was not easy to implement with BOINC.
Over the years we run many random experiments but also many experiments that require specific tasks to specific locations.
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Message 601 - Posted: 14 Jun 2020, 9:24:53 UTC - in response to Message 42.  

Where can I find the data visualization now? That link doesn't work anymore.
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Message 610 - Posted: 21 Jun 2020, 20:04:05 UTC

New visualization page address: https://vi.ithena.net/
Additionally, you can read a new article by iThena on Everipedia: https://everipedia.org/wiki/lang_en/ithena
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Message 612 - Posted: 23 Jun 2020, 13:54:40 UTC - in response to Message 610.  

New visualization page address: https://vi.ithena.net/

Any way this could be made into a screensaver?

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