Debugging DSR

Here is an idea that sounds frightening at first. A command to a node with two short string arguments. If the node agrees, which I presume it generally would, it watches for a destination path whose initial portion matches the first string, and a payload whose initial portion matches the 2nd string. When it sees such a packet it reports the packet’s SS and money back to the requester along the return path in the request. An option would be to add some money to the packet.

This is a slight pain to those how would rather not have their packets sniffed this way but there is an easy way out: XOR 32 or 64 bits into the beginning of the payload with a value known to the recipient.


There are some security problems with the above: These problems must be fixed. Perhaps tracer packets are good enough.

Another perspective on this larger question is whether to pretend that our traffic thru the network is secret. If some nodes refused to perform this function, and you were convinced of this, and you could route your packets entirely thru such nodes, then you would achieve a degree of secrecy.


I do not now like this proposal. It establishes a mechanism that makes it cheap and expected that information on the net is surveillable. Expectations can control.

We need a tool this simple that does not suffer these drawbacks and is much harder to abuse.

Here is an Agoric idea: A node would require a substantial payment to be transferred from the snoop request to the snooped packet. One dollar might do. After a period the amount would instead be returned to the requester. This would keep the Madison avenue crowd away.