Mussel is a background service to meaure broadband service performance. It is developed by members of the AquaLab research group at Northwestern University. The name of our tool is inspired by the use of bivalves, such as mussels, by researchers for the purposes of measuring and monitoring water quality.



Download the file according to your OS and architecture. Then follow the instructions according to your OS.

Before installing Mussel, please go to the Java website and download and install the latest version of Java. Although this step is not required, skipping it may prevent some of Mussel's measurements from running.

To install Mussel on Windows, simply download the corresponding version and run the installer. This will both install and automatically start Mussel immediately and each time your computer reboots. We have compiled a version for each of the 32 or 64 bit architectures. If you are not sure which version of Windows you are running, download the 32 bit version.


Once you have installed and started Mussel, you can check that it is up and running by opening your browser and going to http://localhost:42000/about/index.html.


To uninstall Mussel, simply go to the Control Panel, click "Uninstall a program", find Mussel in the list, right click on it and select "Uninstall", and then follow the on screen isntructions.

OS X and Linux

Updated versions are coming soon!

Data Collection

Mussel conducts a number of network measurements and reports the results to help further our research. Results of traceroutes, pings, bandwidth tests, and DNS queries. Mussel also collects some information, such as timing measurements and program errors, to help us debug any errors that occur. Such data is not shared with other parties.