Update on the MyESnet Portal

We have been pretty quiet about the MyESnet Portal lately.  That’s because we have been busy working on some exciting new features! We are happy to announce that we have rolled out a new version of the portal.  We’ll start out discussing the new features and then go into the development road map.

New, improved widgets

New Features

The graphing widget used on the site summary, flow and site interface pages has been significantly improved:

  • The user can zoom in on a region of any graph by clicking and sweeping out a time range on the graph;
  • All controls have been consolidated on the right hand side of the graph;
  • The time range of the displayed data is shown in the controls section on the right;
  • The tracker is updated for all visible graphs;
  • All visualizations are now done using the d3.js toolkit which provides greater interactivity.  You can see many interesting examples of d3.js based visualizations here.

Other improvements include:

  • The details of an outage trouble ticket are accessible in the “site outage” and “availability” displays by clicking on the ticket number
  • A frequently asked questions section was added under the Help tab
  • A site updates page was added under the Help tab
  • Duplicate site peering entries were removed (although the speed is still wrong in some cases)

Development Road Map

We have discussed our plans with many people both inside and outside of ESnet and have produced a list of features and an approximate timeline for the completion of those features.  This timeline is by no means set in stone – we will most likely rearrange things as priorities and goals are updated. We would love to hear your comments on this plan, both in terms of timing and features.  Are there features you would like to see that aren’t listed?  Do you think something should be given higher priority?  Let us know.

Data Improvements (29 Sep 2011)

General improvements to the quality and freshness of the data presented in the portal.  The MyESnet Portal gathers information from a wide variety of data sources inside ESnet. When one data source has a different idea of how things work than another data source, we will be working to reconcile these differences and address bugs we have found.  In a few cases data is imported into the portal manually and will be automated.

Topology Visualization (12 Oct 2011)

Build a clean, simple, data driven widget to visualize topology information.  We will not dive into solving the difficult problem of automatic layout of large complex topologies.  Instead the widget will focus on a generalization of the subway diagram to allow a two dimensional grid of nodes where the relative position of each node is specified.  This visualization widget will be used to create several visualizations:

Advanced Networking Initiative (ANI) 100G Prototype Network Visualization
This will use the topology visualization widget to show the details of the ANI network including current buildout status and the full network.  A stretch goal is to include some support for mobile devices in this visualization.

SC11 Demo Visualizations
A series of visualizations showing the extent of all the SC11 demos that ESnet is supporting.

OSCARS Details
We’ll use the visualization widget to display details about any given OSCARS circuit.  This will allow visibility into the details of OSCARS circuit for each ESnet site.

Power Stats and Visualizations (22 Oct 2011)

The ANI network is being instrumented to measure power consumption.  This will
use the existing graph widget to show power data for ANI.  We will also look to integrate some portion of the visualizations developed by our summer Ph.D student through our Monitoring and Visualization of Energy consumed by Networks (MAVEN) project.

Ideation Tool (04 Nov 2011)

This tool is intended to be a simple system to collect and develop ideas for ESnet as a whole.  People can share ideas for the portal and eventually all ESnet services, and comment on them. They will also be able to “Like on Facebook”, “+1 Google Plus” and tweet about the specific ideas.  More sophisticated social media integration will be explored but will not be a blocker to the deployment timeline.

Monthly Stats (03 Dec 2011)

ESnet collects statistics about the utilization of the network.  Each month these statistics are analyzed to produce a report of the traffic volume the ESnet carried for that month.  Currently these reports are emailed to specific users, but are not available on the web.  This will provide an interface that will allow users to explore historical data and see projections of anticipated growth.  This includes not only vanilla IP connections but OSCARS and optical connections as well.

Path of Interest (17 Dec 2011)

This tool will allow users to get statistics on a particular path of interest within ESnet.  Users will be able to examine utilization and error rates which will be visualized using the topology widget.  This will set the stage for visualizing paths that cross into other networks once perfSONAR integration is complete.

Shibboleth / OpenID (14 Jan 2012)

Allow users to login with identities provided by other organizations using Shibboleth or OpenID.  This will allow, for example, users to login in using their credentials from their home organization.

Site Health (21 Jan 2012)

The site summary page has a minimal set of health related displays for ESnet sites.  We will develop more in depth displays including details on open trouble tickets for the site, prefixes announced to and received from the site and secondary DNS delegations.  If possible this will integrate with the new ServiceNow deployment.

Looking Glass (28 Jan 2012)

This tool allows users to run commands on our routers and see real time results.  This includes running traceroute, ping and route lookups and will allow users to do some preliminary troubleshooting on their own.

perfSONAR Integration (11 Feb 2012)

perfSONAR is an open-source software package that helps users to quickly identify problems on any given path – and can do so across any set of networks that is perfSONAR-enabled. The portal will be extended to allow the Path of Interest widget to visualize perfSONAR’s network performance data in a more user-friendly display to help users better understand and troubleshoot network issues from end to end.

Peering Visualization (18 Feb 2012)

The topology widget will be extended to give users deeper insight into ESnet’s peering relationships.  For each site there will be a visualization that shows how that site is connected to ESnet.  There may also be visualizations that show how ESnet connects to various other networks.

Mobile Device Support (24 Feb 2012)

Currently the MyESnet portal can be used on many mobile devices.  We will analyze the site and make improvements to the mobile experience where necessary.

–Jon Dugan