The Email Tester Project


Electronic mail is an unquestionably vital component of the Internet infrastructure. While the general perception of email is that it ``just works,'' surprisingly little data is available to substantiate this claim. Although SMTP is a mature technology of over twenty years, the architecture is increasingly strained by both normal and unsolicited load. This project is an initial step towards using active measurement and analysis to understand the nature of the Internet's email system.


The State of the Email Address
Mike Afergan and Rob Beverly
ACM SIGCOMM Computer Communications Review,
Measuring the Internet's Vital Statistics (CCR- IVS)
Volume 35, Number 1: January 2005.
[PDF] [PS] [BibTeX]


A list of frequently asked questions is available.

Data Set

The dataset used in the paper can be found at Please read the README.txt which is included in the tar. The tar also includes some sample queries to demonstrate use of the schema.

Related Research

Based on this initial study, we're conducting further research using active measurement probes.

Contact Information

Questions? Comments? Flames?
Feel free to contact Mike Afergan and Rob Beverly at [testers]@[]
We are especially interested in new theories and ideas that help us to explain any of the phenomena presented in the paper.