Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

An Analysis of International Electronic Mail Performance and Reliability

Lookup NU author(s): David Ingham


Full text is not currently available for this publication.


This report describes a project to investigate the performance and reliability of international electronic mail to and from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. The project was carried out by eight students as part of the practical work associated with an advanced Masters degree in Computing Software and Systems Design. It involved the development of a system for analyzing electronic mail headers so as to determine the sequence of machines each mail message had passed through, and to estimate the length of time taken on each stage of its journey. Means were also developed for monitoring all incoming mail to the University, and also for generating and managing special mail traffic to "mirrors". Such mirrors automatically return messages sent to them, and so enable accurate round-trip performance and reliability statistics to be gathered. The data gathered from traffic monitoring and the use of mirrors was entered into a relational database, and a variety of facilities for analyzing this data, and presenting the results of this analysis were produced. The report describes these facilities and presents data obtained (i) by monitoring regular incoming mail traffic over a period of 15 days, during which over 40,000 messages were received from approximately 40 different countries, the statistics derived from which indicate the quantity of messages and the average journey times from each country and the delays at the various major UK gateways involved, and (ii) from nearly 10,000 messages that were sent over a period of six weeks to approximately 60 mirrors in 21 different countries, from which statistics were obtained on round-trip, inward and outward journey times, numbers of failed or lost messages, and gateway delays.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Diemoz E, Jowett AT, Ingham DB, Lwanda C, Morton AJ, Mtema PB, Whittaker S, Wright D

Publication type: Report

Publication status: Published

Series Title: Department of Computing Science Technical Report Series

Year: 1992

Report Number: 393

Institution: Department of Computing Science, University of Newcastle upon Tyne

Place Published: Newcastle upon Tyne