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RIPE Atlas Anchors

What are RIPE Atlas anchors?

RIPE Atlas anchors are RIPE Atlas probes with enhanced measurement capacity that serve as reliable measurement targets within the greater RIPE Atlas network. RIPE Atlas anchors can be physical hardware devices purchased and maintained by hosts or virtual machines (VMs) created by hosts to act as anchors.

Anchors are able to perform more measurements than a regular RIPE Atlas probe, and the large amount of data they collect is made available to everyone. In addition, anchors act as powerful targets that can handle a large number of measurements originating from nearby probes in the RIPE Atlas network. As such, RIPE Atlas anchors provide valuable information about the local and regional connectivity and reachability of the Internet. In most cases, it is not necessary to send a ping or traceroute around the entire globe in order to identify problems in local connectivity – investigating connectivity at the local level is usually sufficient.

In addition to performing more measurements themselves, RIPE Atlas anchors also act as well-known and co-operating targets for user-defined measurements set up by probe hosts throughout the RIPE Atlas network, and are located at hosts with sufficient bandwidth to support this larger number of incoming measurements. To recognise this service to the community, RIPE Atlas anchor hosts earn additional credits.

RIPE Atlas anchors became a full production service in October 2013.

List of anchors

See a complete list of the RIPE Atlas anchors.

Map of anchors

See a map showing the anchor locations.

Using RIPE Atlas anchors

  • RIPE Atlas users can schedule measurements originating from anchors. In this sense, anchors act as probes, but with much greater measurement capacity than regular probes.
  • RIPE Atlas users can schedule measurements targeting anchors via the user-defined measurements menu. The anchor names are encoded in such a way that they display their country and city location as well as the Autonomous System Number in which they are situated. This way, RIPE Atlas users get to choose from a list of regional targets (anchors) in different networks and in different geographical locations.
  • Each RIPE Atlas anchor can be used as a target for the following measurements: ping, traceroute, DNS, HTTP(S).
  • The RIPE NCC schedules baseline measurements, called anchoring measurements, towards the anchors. These ongoing measurements are performed by hundreds of probes from the RIPE Atlas network.

We are continuously working on increasing RIPE Atlas anchor features and functionality based on the feedback we receive from the hosts and the community. Find out how you can give us your feedback.

Benefits for RIPE Atlas anchor hosts

Become a RIPE Atlas anchor host

We are interested in distributing RIPE Atlas anchors as widely as possible.

Organisations willing to host a RIPE Atlas anchor can find the pre-requisites and instructions here. You do not have to be a RIPE NCC member to host a RIPE Atlas anchor. All RIPE anchor hosts must agree to the RIPE Atlas Service Terms and Conditions and Memorandum of Understanding.

Learn more

We develop RIPE Atlas in cooperation with the Internet community, and we want to know what you think. Find out how to get in touch.