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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Jul 16, 2018 3:08 am

** Edited: Nov 30th, 2020 **
** Find Instructions and downloads on GitHub under the GPL3 **
Direct download for latest Debian (.deb) installer
Turn 2x Raspberry Pis into Network Testers with Kootnet Network Testers. MTR & iPerf3 are used between the 2 units to test latency & throughput on individual cables or network routes.

Use E-Ink display and buttons OR the built-in web interface to operate.

Image

Note: I recommend using the Raspberry Pi 4 due to its 1GB Network adapter
Note: The Raspberry Pi 3B+ can't test bandwidth higher than 300Mbps, HOWEVER, bad cables and routes usually still show as irregular results


Hardware
2x Raspberry Pi's /w Ethernet Connection *Required
1x 2.7" E-Ink display with 4 buttons (WaveShare) *Optional

With the WaveShare 2.7" E-Ink Display, you can use the 4 built-in buttons to operate the device.
The 4th button changes what the first 3 buttons do. When the 4th button is pressed, it will display a message describing what each button does. There are currently 3 "Levels" you can switch between with the 4th button, which are as follows.

Primary Button Functions
1. Run & Display MTR tests
2. Run & Display iPerf3 tests
3. Nothing (WIP)
4. Change Button Functions

Secondary Button Functions
1. System Information
2. Upgrade Kootnet Ethernet Tester Software
3. Upgrade Kootnet Ethernet Tester Software Developmental
4. Change Button Functions

Tertiary Button Functions
1. Shutdown Remote Test Server
2. Shutdown Local Unit
3. Nothing (WIP)
4. Change Button Functions

Note: Each button displays a message before and after they do something, so you know if it's working

Kootnet Network Tester Pictures

Web Portal

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WaveShare 2.7" E-Ink Display + Buttons

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Last edited by OO-Dragon on Tue Mar 02, 2021 1:17 am, edited 8 times in total.
OO-Dragon

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Re: Created your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Sat Jul 21, 2018 2:33 am

*** Edited Jan 10th, 2020 ***

I have made a Debian installer package to install Kootnet Network Testers on 2x Raspberry Pis.
Up to date instructions can be found at the following link.

https://github.com/chad-ermacora/rp-network-testers

The Short Version of the install instructions is as follows.

Step 1. Install Raspbian on both Pis and connect them to the Internet
Step 2. Optional: Install E-Ink Display on one of the Pi's
Step 3. Run the following command on both the Pis

Code: Select all

wget -O KootnetNetworkTesters.deb http://kootenay-networks.com/installers/KootnetNetworkTesters.deb && sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y install ./KootnetNetworkTesters.deb
Step 4. Configure the "Remote Test Server IP" on the device you will be running the tests from. Get the IP from the other tester.
Step 5. Optional: If you are not connecting the Pis to a network with a DHCP server (such as testing a single cable), you will need to set Static IPs on both units and have the "Remote Test Server IP" reflect that.

That's it, have fun testing.
Last edited by OO-Dragon on Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:22 am, edited 7 times in total.
OO-Dragon

tbird56
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Aug 10, 2019 5:52 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Sat Aug 10, 2019 6:03 pm

Hi OO-dragon, I was searching the net for an issue I had and came across your post. A question I have is - can a raspberry pi be used to checked if a network is properly working. Issue was - network printer had manual IP address set. Printed the configuration page and under IPv4 setting nothing was listed "Not Specified". I checked the back of printer and had light at nic card. I could not ping the printer IP address. I was told nic card was bad and to replace printer. Replaced printer still same thing. Took old printer connected to another port and pinged printer IP and it worked. So I began thinking about a tester for lan's. Instead of carrying a laptop around could a raspberry be used to check the full functionality of a lan port instead of just a PoE? this way I can determine if it actually is the nic card of a printer or our network settings for that port. I really do not know anything about raspberry's but thought I would give you a note to see what you think. Thanks. tbird56.

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:03 pm

Sorry for the late reply, I have not been on the forums for a bit.

It sounds like you came to the right project. I made these testers to do exactly that. Plug the 2 testers on either end of the route you want to test and let them run. So long as there are no VLANs between the units, they should work no matter the existing DHCP settings (I made sure to set the Units to use static IP's outside of any normal DHCP Range).

Also, since the Raspberry Pi 4 has come out, you should be able to get some accurate readings of 1GBps networks. I have yet to actually test the Pi 4 though (I only have one right now).

I, of course, recommend testing them on known good working ports first, just to make sure they are functioning correctly.

I hope this helps and let me know if I can help further.

P.S. you did mention PoE, could you clarify on that a bit? If the port you were plugging the printer into was PoE, that could of cause the issues, as printers are not designed to take PoE (none that I have come across anyway). Also, unless you use the PoE HAT on the Pi, I'm pretty sure a PoE port would also fry a Pi.
OO-Dragon

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
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Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Dec 09, 2019 1:37 am

Kootnet Network Testers has gone through a major update. I have updated the information above, but be sure to check out the GitHub page for the most up to date instructions.

Here are some of the highlights.
  • No special hardware required, they can be operated entirely through the web interface locally or remotely from another computer
  • Can be installed on Ubuntu to take advantage of better hardware (And probably other GNU/Linux Systems)
  • Web Interface for configurations & testing
  • Edit Network Settings: Automatic wireless connection and IP settings for Ethernet & Wireless
  • Improved Hardware display & button operations
If you use it and have suggestions or bug reports, let me know here.

Thanks!
OO-Dragon

bugiroff
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2016 10:00 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Mar 02, 2020 6:31 pm

All right, you've peaked my interest. I've been looking for an alternative to buying a rather expensive networks tester that can do all the fancy stuff. You probably know what I'm taking about, but just in case:
Cable length
NEXT
FEXT
etc etc etc...

Wiremapping is simple stuff. I can do that with an Arduino without an issue, but cable length, that requires a bit more omph. Like lots of omph. One post I recently read on the subject said that it would take at least 500 Mhz and an oscilloscope to accurately run Time Domain Reflectometry and get the cable length. Is the Pi4 up to the challenge? Obviously the Pi4 could run a gigabit test, which would be great. Testing max throughput of a cable run would be awesome.

I should probably share my credentials... I've been pulling cable for 25 years now. I've been running my own little contracting company since 2012 and I'm constantly running into the issue of not having a tester that can certify a cable to cat5 or cat6 specs.

Little wiremap testers are great, but they don't tell the whole story about a cable. I've used OmniScanners and Flukes before, but I can't afford those kind of rigs. Even if I did, I couldn't afford to send them in for calibration for a month each year. Something like this could be right up my alley.

I'd like to talk with you more about this program. I see the potential of it and I'd like to see how far you've taken it!

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:30 pm

bugiroff wrote:
Mon Mar 02, 2020 6:31 pm
All right, you've peaked my interest. I've been looking for an alternative to buying a rather expensive networks tester that can do all the fancy stuff. You probably know what I'm taking about, but just in case:
Cable length
NEXT
FEXT
etc etc etc...

Wiremapping is simple stuff. I can do that with an Arduino without an issue, but cable length, that requires a bit more omph. Like lots of omph. One post I recently read on the subject said that it would take at least 500 Mhz and an oscilloscope to accurately run Time Domain Reflectometry and get the cable length. Is the Pi4 up to the challenge? Obviously the Pi4 could run a gigabit test, which would be great. Testing max throughput of a cable run would be awesome.

I should probably share my credentials... I've been pulling cable for 25 years now. I've been running my own little contracting company since 2012 and I'm constantly running into the issue of not having a tester that can certify a cable to cat5 or cat6 specs.

Little wiremap testers are great, but they don't tell the whole story about a cable. I've used OmniScanners and Flukes before, but I can't afford those kind of rigs. Even if I did, I couldn't afford to send them in for calibration for a month each year. Something like this could be right up my alley.

I'd like to talk with you more about this program. I see the potential of it and I'd like to see how far you've taken it!
I hear you on the expensive testers, that's one of the reasons I made these (Although at the time I only needed a basic tester). I would love to look into adding options as you mentioned above. Send me a PM and I'll give you my email to chat more about it.
OO-Dragon

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B.Goode
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Location: UK

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:41 pm

OO-Dragon wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:30 pm
Send me a PM and I'll give you my email to chat more about it.



Nearly 2 years too late for that...

See viewtopic.php?f=63&t=214084

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Mar 09, 2020 3:17 pm

B.Goode wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:41 pm
OO-Dragon wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:30 pm
Send me a PM and I'll give you my email to chat more about it.



Nearly 2 years too late for that...

See viewtopic.php?f=63&t=214084
O haha, opps. OK, no PM then ... umm, goto my website and send a message through there?

http://kootenay-networks.com/?page_id=11
OO-Dragon

BobHamil
Posts: 76
Joined: Sun Mar 08, 2020 9:37 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Mon Mar 09, 2020 3:27 pm

I also want to develop this as far as possible. I got one each of the three Pi4's this week specifically because I've burned/worn out all the nics except one on my laptops with 1g nics. These 1g nic Pi4's seem perfect for deploying to remote parts of a network for testing or monitoring. I use Iperf3 a lot.
I wonder what the capabilities of this nic is for using the pairs outside of the usual network purpose. I don't know if any nics can do what a network tester does to determine NEXT, etc. I would guess I'm limited to Iperf, mtr, etc for testing with this setup.

I think I'm seeing that the receive side of all three nics starts to get lots of errors beyond 400Mbps, but I'm testing a bunch today to verify if that's really what's happening. Any advice regarding verifying this would be welcome. I'm observing the possible problem with iperf3 -u -b 1000000000 -c. If I run the test both directions at the same time, the errors appear to drop, but receive speed still appears to peak in the 700's.
Bob

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
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Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Wed Mar 18, 2020 2:12 am

BobHamil wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 3:27 pm
I also want to develop this as far as possible. I got one each of the three Pi4's this week specifically because I've burned/worn out all the nics except one on my laptops with 1g nics. These 1g nic Pi4's seem perfect for deploying to remote parts of a network for testing or monitoring. I use Iperf3 a lot.
I wonder what the capabilities of this nic is for using the pairs outside of the usual network purpose. I don't know if any nics can do what a network tester does to determine NEXT, etc. I would guess I'm limited to Iperf, mtr, etc for testing with this setup.

I think I'm seeing that the receive side of all three nics starts to get lots of errors beyond 400Mbps, but I'm testing a bunch today to verify if that's really what's happening. Any advice regarding verifying this would be welcome. I'm observing the possible problem with iperf3 -u -b 1000000000 -c. If I run the test both directions at the same time, the errors appear to drop, but receive speed still appears to peak in the 700's.
Bob
That's odd for the errors. Might be a bad Pi or there really is a bad connection somewhere on the network. Try setting static IP's and running tests over a few good cables directly between the units (No routers or switches).

Running tests with 2x Pi 4s over a switch I get no errors and around 880Mbps to 925Mbps throughput.
Using a Pi 3B+ I get no errors and about 290Mbps.

I'll add the ability to adjust the command-line options for the iPerf tests in a future version.

Also, let me know of any additional hardware you would like supported, such as add-on displays, buttons and controls.
OO-Dragon

BobHamil
Posts: 76
Joined: Sun Mar 08, 2020 9:37 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Wed Mar 18, 2020 1:23 pm

Thanks OO-Dragon,
I started a new thread about the matter.
viewtopic.php?f=36&t=267668

It would certainly be great to do more advanced testing like NEXT, but as I've said, I think network testers like Flukes probably have very specialized nics, to allow for those tests.

Bob

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OO-Dragon
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Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Fri Apr 10, 2020 4:07 am

** Important: If you are running version 1.2.x, DO NOT use the upgrade button in the web interface, there is a bug in the upgrade system that will render your install unusable. please instead follow the original install instructions. **

Version 1.3.1 has been released with the following additions.
  • View & download previous test results
  • Setup tests to run every X minutes
  • Set custom iPerf 3 options
  • View program log entries
  • Misc bug fixes
OO-Dragon

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OO-Dragon
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Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Tue Mar 02, 2021 12:57 am

Updated to version 1.4.0

Since version 1.3.1 I have added the following.
- View previous MTR / iPerf results separately (side by side). This makes it easier to find results faster.
- Added 'Run Once' schedule. Set tests to run at a specific day & time by specifying the year, month, day, hour and minutes.

I actually released this a while ago, I just didn't update it here. So there may be a few other tweaks I'm forgetting as well.

Happy testing!
OO-Dragon

madmaximux
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Apr 03, 2021 7:58 am

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:41 pm

Hey there! Wanted to say awesome project!

I ordered two RPi 4s and the Waveshare e-ink screen and setup everything very easily. Works great. Been using it to find faulty Ethernet cabling through out the house. So thank you!

I wanted to know how open would you be to suggestions or Pull Requests on GitHub. I have a few ideas to make testing connections even more helpful.

Thanks!

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OO-Dragon
Posts: 38
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:09 pm

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Thu Apr 22, 2021 5:54 pm

madmaximux wrote:
Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:41 pm
Hey there! Wanted to say awesome project!

I ordered two RPi 4s and the Waveshare e-ink screen and setup everything very easily. Works great. Been using it to find faulty Ethernet cabling through out the house. So thank you!

I wanted to know how open would you be to suggestions or Pull Requests on GitHub. I have a few ideas to make testing connections even more helpful.

Thanks!
I'm happy to hear someone else is also finding this useful! I'm also up to suggestions, requests & pull requests on GitHub. The "Discussions" area on the GitHub project page would be a good place to drum up idea's on what and how to improve things.

I look forward to hearing your suggestions.
OO-Dragon

madmaximux
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Apr 03, 2021 7:58 am

Re: Create your own Raspberry Pi Network Testers

Sat Apr 24, 2021 11:32 pm

OO-Dragon wrote:
Thu Apr 22, 2021 5:54 pm
madmaximux wrote:
Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:41 pm
Hey there! Wanted to say awesome project!

I ordered two RPi 4s and the Waveshare e-ink screen and setup everything very easily. Works great. Been using it to find faulty Ethernet cabling through out the house. So thank you!

I wanted to know how open would you be to suggestions or Pull Requests on GitHub. I have a few ideas to make testing connections even more helpful.

Thanks!
I'm happy to hear someone else is also finding this useful! I'm also up to suggestions, requests & pull requests on GitHub. The "Discussions" area on the GitHub project page would be a good place to drum up idea's on what and how to improve things.

I look forward to hearing your suggestions.
Awesome!

My ideas arent anything too crazy - just a minor thing or two. I'll post it to GH Discussions.

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