Requiring access tokens for ndt7

Posted by Stephen Soltesz on 2021-02-12
ndt, ndt7

Performing a measurement with ndt7 on the M-Lab platform now requires an access token issued by the Locate API v2.


The original plan to require access tokens for ndt7 was rescheduled to 2021-02. This was to allow time for existing deployments to update their clients.

Clients supported by M-Lab already use the Locate API v2 and provide access tokens to the ndt7 server automatically.

Clients supported by the community support the Locate API v2 to some degree. Your help improving them would be welcome.

Why this matters

Most measurements are run by people at random times during the day. The random distribution, means no single machine receives too many tests at any one time. As well, the Locate API randomizes results within a geographic region, further helping distribute load across available servers.

However, a growing number of automated clients run on very regular schedules. As well, some clients target a small number of specific machines. Ultimately, when many clients run a measurement at the same time to the same server, they degrade user experience and measurement quality for their own and other measurements. See the image below.


We believe this behavior is the accidental and unfortunate result of non-randomized scheduling.

If you are building automated testing, please review and follow our best practices for client scheduling.


If you have questions, please let us know.

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