E-SNIFF: The Embedded Ethernet Packet Sniffer







E-Sniff : A Standalone Ethernet Packet Sniffer
Created By Alex Hoyland

With the growing complexity of IP networks, it has become increasingly difficult to determine the source of network problems. Packet loss can occur due to any number of sources, from congestion to poorly written firewall rules to routing problems. It can at times be difficult to determine where in the network packets are lost, and system administrators will often find it helpful to view the traffic going over the line. This is the job of a packet sniffer. Many commercial and open-source sniffer applications are available for PCs; however, it would often be useful to have a special-purpose sniffing device so that one could avoid running sniffing software on high-volume server systems. A small Ethernet sniffing device could also be used for covert eavesdropping on network traffic, if one were so inclined.

The objective of the E-Sniff project is to produce a standalone packet sniffer using an Altera DE2 Education board. The completed system will sniff packets from a 10/100mbps Ethernet interface and display relevant information about captured packets on a VGA monitor. Packet information will also be logged to a non-volatile flash memory for later review.