Week 15 ( 2nds Sems) – NSDI 2015

I have recently returned from  NSDI 2015 in Oakland, CA. Overall, I enjoyed the experience; it was very interesting to listen to the paper presentations and learn about the types of research being conducted at such a high level. Two presentations in particular stuck out to me.  Phd researchers from the University of Cambridge gave a presentation on how jumping queues ( Qjump) can lower latency in a data centers. I especially enjoyed this talk because I was familiar with several OS-related concepts and was therefore able to follow along easily.  During the Wireless Track, researchers from MIT presented a system to track several people, both stationary and moving, utilizing wireless signals. They even had an real-life demonstration where they were able to localize a stationary volunteer based on his heartbeat. The paper was titled Multi-Person Localization via RF Body Reflections.

On Monday night I attended an BoF ( Birds of a Feather) session for Students and Young Professionals. There, I was able to meet other younger researchers like myself and trade stories, discuss the presentations of the day, and generally socialize. Finding such a great group of people with similar experiences really made my time at NSDI truly enjoyable.

Week 14 ( 2nd Sems) – Configuring Nginx

Since nginx ( pronounced ‘engine-x’ ) was the second most common web server/load balancer in use, we thought it would be a good idea to try some of the previous techniques ( check IPid sequences, TCP timestamps, etc) on servers running nginx to see if the results hold. I spent this week attempting to configure a couple instances in EC2 running nginx. The set-up is slightly more complicated than a basic Apache server and so additional troubleshooting was needed.

Week 13 (2nd Sems) – Searching for Servers

This week I continued to look through the list ( I pulled approximately 3,000  server fields ). To make things easier, I removed Apache results and sorted the list alphabetically. Most of the names listed in the server field are those of general web servers, not any specific open source load-balancing services such as balance,  HA Proxy, Linux Virtual Server, etc. Since we are looking at old WhoWas data, the results are not reflective of the most currently services in the cloud, but nevertheless are a good starting point.