Measuring average download speed
May 31, 2005 10:40 AM   Subscribe

I have to run tests that involve measuring the transmission time and average transmission speed for downloading a certain file or files over HTTP at a range of connection speeds. Is there software that will make this easy?

I don't want to simulate the network speeds, the test will be performed using LAN/broadband/dial-up. And I need to be able to specify the file to download via HTTP. I'm familiar with EtherPeek-type application, but I'm looking for a simpler solution. Something a little more accurate than watching netstat stats while timing the download is desirable. Free software preferrable, but I'd pay for software that made the test real easy.
posted by McGuillicuddy to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
wget puts up a little M/s readout while it downloads over HTTP. Looks like this:

hola:~/pending_messages > wget
=> `'
Connecting to[]:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 23,379,972 [video/quicktime]

100%[====================================>] 23,379,972 11.20M/s

13:53:15 (11.20 MB/s) - `' saved [23379972/23379972]
posted by nicwolff at 10:52 AM on May 31, 2005

For bit level speeds( not HTTP, I know ) you can use netperf. It's main function is that of a benchmarking tool. You put a server(netserver) on one side and run netperf from the other. You could also do concurrent up/down tests. It does TCP and UDP and you can specify the message sizes of the frames. It can also be configured to give you the CPU hit on the server client side.
posted by mnology at 11:10 AM on May 31, 2005

If it's an apache server, you might already have the tools available. ab: Apache HTTPD benchmarking tool
posted by mnology at 11:28 AM on May 31, 2005

$ time wget

=> `your_warez.rar'
Resolving localhost... done.
Connecting to somewhere[]:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 1,456 [application/octet-stream]

100%[====================================>] 1,456 1.39M/s ETA 00:00

13:59:20 (1.39 MB/s) - `your_warez.rar' saved [1456/1456]

real 0m0.007s
user 0m0.000s
sys 0m0.003s

You care about the "real" line.
posted by majick at 1:58 PM on May 31, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks, nicwolff and majick! I was stuck in a Windows mindset, but Cygwin, bash and wget made the testing easy.
posted by McGuillicuddy at 8:53 AM on June 1, 2005

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