Please see the new BRITE release at

BRITE: Boston university Representative Internet Topology gEnerator
A Flexible Generator of Internet Topologies

Alberto Medina            Ibrahim Matta           John Byers

QoS Networking Laboratory
Computer Science Department
Boston University

BRITE is a parametrized topology generation tool, which can be used to flexibly control various parameters (such as connectivity and growth models) and study various properties of generated topologies (such power laws, average path length, etc).


BRITE  is a parametrized topology generator that can be used to study the relevance of possible causes for power laws and other metrics recently observed in Internet topologies. Different combinations of possible causes can be tested. In this version, we consider four possible causes: preferential connectivity, incremental growth, node placement, and connection locality. For each combination, the generated topologies can be analyzed in terms of power laws and other metrics observed in real networks. The following table  lists the various parameters of BRITE. We describe each parameter next.

Table: Parameters of BRITE
Parameter  Meaning  Values
HS Size of one side of the plane Integer > 1
LS Size of one side of a high-level square Integer >= 1
NP Node Placement 0: Random, 1: Heavy-Tailed
m Number of links added per new node
Integer >= 1
PC Preferential Connectivity 0: NONE, 1: ONLY, 2: BOTH
IG Incremental Growth 0: INACTIVE, 1: ACTIVE

The Plane:

The nodes of the generated topology are distributed in a plane divided into HS x HS squares. Each one of these high-level squares is further subdivided into smaller LS x LS low-level  squares. Each low-level square can be assigned at most one node.

Node Assignment:

A Random placement of nodes in the plane is achieved by simply selecting a low-level square randomly and dropping a node there while avoiding collisions. To achieve a Heavy-Tailed distribution of nodes, for each one of the high-level squares, the generator picks a number of nodes to be assigned to that square according to a bounded Pareto distribution. A node is then placed randomly in one of the LS x LS low-level  squares while avoiding collisions.

Number of Links for a New Node:

The parameter m controls the number of neighbor nodes to which a new node connects when it joins the network (or in other words, the number of new links to be added to the topology). The greater the value of m, the denser the generated topology. We refer to the set of nodes from which a neighbor is selected for a new node as the candidate neighbor set.

Incremental Growth:

This parameter controls incremental growth and can take one of two values: Initially, before operating in either INACTIVE or ACTIVE mode, the generator generates a small randomly connected backbone of m0 nodes. The remaining nodes are then connected.

Preferential Connectivity:

This parameter controls the activation or deactivation of preferential connectivity. There are three possible values for this parameter:


Alberto Medina, Ibrahim Matta, and John Byers. On the Origin of Power Laws in Internet Topologies. ACM Computer Communication Review, 30(2), April 2000. Also, BU-CS-TR-2000-0004, January 21, 2000.
Alberto Medina, Ibrahim Matta, and John Byers. BRITE: A Flexible Generator of Internet Topologies. BU-CS-TR-2000-005.


Please see the new BRITE release at

Download BRITE version 1.0. Please read copyright notice.

We apologize BRITE is not available for downloading at this time as we prepare the new version.
Please send us email and we will notify you once the new version is released (expected end of March 2001).

Please send comments and suggestions to Alberto Medina, Ibrahim Matta, John Byers.
Created on 01/21/2000
Last updated 03/23/2001