Today's Internet provides a best effort service. It processes traffic as quickly as possible, but there is no guarantee at all about timeliness or actual delivery: it just tries its best. However, the Internet is rapidly growing into a commercial infrastructure, and economies are getting more and more dependent on a high service level with regard to the Internet. Massive (research) efforts are put into transforming the Internet from a best effort service into a network service users can really rely upon.
Commercial demands gave rise to the idea of having various classes of service. For instance one can imagine that companies might offer (or buy, for that matter) either a gold, silver or bronze service level. Each of them having their own characteristics in terms of bandwidth and latency with regard to network traffic. This is called Quality of Service (QoS). The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), one of the main driving forces behind Internet related technologies, has proposed several architectures to meet this demand for QoS. Integrated Services and Differentiated Services, developed in the ?intserv? and ?diffserv? IETF Working Groups, are probably the best known models and mechanisms. The IETF diffserv WG has also defined a DiffServ Management Information Base, a virtual storage place for management information regarding DiffServ. At time of writing, this MIB is still work in progress. This assignment contributes to the development of the DiffServ MIB by writing a prototype implementation of a DiffServ MIB agent and giving feedback to the IETF community. One of the likely uses of the DiffServ MIB is that it may act as part of a bigger policy-
based management framework. Therefore an implementation of the DiffServ MIB might also help development in that area.
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