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Orbit > HowToGetStarted

How to get started

First, you need an account. In order to get an account please register here.

A typical experiment requires the following three steps:

  • Reservation
  • Running the experiment
  • Analyzing the results


As this is a wireless testbed, it is difficult to run multiple experiments without interference. Therefore, we currently only support one experiment at a time on any of the grids. In Orbit speak, a grid is a set of nodes on which to run experiments. In the present setup, the testbed consists of a 20*20 grid of nodes, and an array of sandboxes (1*2 grids).

Reservations for any of these resources can be made here.

Note, that a reservation is just a request. You will receive an email when your slot is approved.

Running the Experiment

During your approved time slot, you will be able to log into the console of the respective grid. A console is a dedicated machine that allows access to all resources on that grid.

Currently, this requires a two step process. You first need to log into with your Orbit credentials using SSH. From there you then can log into the console corresponding to the following table:

Main grid
Sandbox 1
Sandbox 2
Sandbox 5
Sandbox 6

When you are logged in, you can start an experiment using the nodehandler. First time users are highly encouraged to reserve time on a sandbox, and start with the built-in Hello World experiment. This experiment will send UDP datagrams of 1024 bytes from node 1-1 to node 1-2 at 300 kbps CBR traffic. Both, sender and receiver, report measurements to a database, using our OML measurement framework.

The experiment can be started with:

user#> nodehandler -t

More information on writing experiment scripts can be found in the Tutorial.

Analyzing Results

Orbit provides a sophisticated framework to efficiently collect measurments at runtime into a database. This database is accessible to the experimenter during the experiment from the console. At the end of an experiment, the database is copied to an external machine and is accessible without a reservation. More information can be found here.

Where to go from here

If you are still unsure what Orbit is, please read the FAQ, otherwise go ahead and register.

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