As part of a broader organisational restructure, data networking research at Swinburne University of Technology has moved from the Centre for Advanced Internet Architecture (CAIA) to the Internet For Things (I4T) Research Lab.

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Capturing Xbox System Link Traffic While Playing TimeSplitters2

CAIA Technical Report 031009A

Ana M. Pavlicic
October 9th, 2003

Introduction

This investigation looks at packet inter-arrival time and packet length of traffic captured from the Xbox system link game TimeSplitters2. The number of players both on the server Xbox and client Xboxes varied, as did the console allocated as server. Three Xbox consoles were used to investigate any possible difference in server behaviour as the roles of client and server were interchanged.

Generating and Capturing TimeSplitters2 Traffic

Equipment Used for Traffic Generation
Testing Method

The game traffic used in this investigation was comprised of six games each lasting one complete map. The table below gives the number of players on the server and two client Xbox consoles in each game.

Game
Server Console
Players on Server
Players on Console 1
Players on Console 2
Total Players
1
A
1
1
1
3
2
B
2
2
1
5
3
C
2
2
2
6
4
A
2
3
2
7
5
B
2
4
2
8
6
C
4
4
1
9

Results/Discussion

The results showed that the number of players on each console influenced the data results. The following are general characteristics found in the data results:

One Player on Console
Two Players on Console
Three Players on Console
Four Players on Console
Aggregate Flows
Aggregate Traffic PPS/Data Rate

Summary and Further Analysis

The following tables show a summary of the results obtained during the investigation where P is the total number of players in the game and N is the number of players on a console:

Packet Inter-Arrival Times:

Individual Client
Aggregate Flow
Server to Client
Client to Server
Server to Client
Client to Server
Peaks at 0ms, 20ms, 40ms, 60ms, 80ms, 100ms, 120ms where N > 1
120ms
Peaks at 0ms, 20ms, 40ms, 60ms, 80ms, 100ms, 120ms where N > 1 Symmetrical around 60ms


Packet Lengths:

Individual Client
Aggregate Flow
Server to Client
Client to Server
Server to Client
Client to Server
Dependant on number of players.
Common peaks: 92bytes, 100bytes
Dependant on number of players.
Common peak: 92bytes
Dependant on number of players.
Common peaks: 60bytes, 68bytes, 78bytes, 92bytes, 100bytes
Dependant on number of players.
Common peaks: 78bytes, 92bytes


PPS/Rate:

Aggregate PPS
Aggregate Rate (kbits/sec)
Server to Clients
Clients to Server
Server to Clients
Clients to Server
1.515P + 15.625
0.250P + 15.950
2.618P + 7.275
0.745P + 7.875


As we can see these results are fairly consistent and the data produced has some obvious patterns. This was expected as the data was collected in an enclosed and controlled environment without external interference.

Further analysis will investigate the jitter, loss and latency of packets. Human trials may also be conducted as to the quality of this system link game when interferences such as packet loss and lag are introduced into the environment to simulate Internet gaming.





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Last Updated: Friday 10-Oct-2003 09:32:32 AEST
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Maintained by: Ana Pavlicic apavlicic@groupwise.swin.edu.au
Authorised by: Grenville Armitage garmitage@swin.edu.au

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