Engineer internet peering

#LINX81 internet plumbing stats

I’m at LINX81. I go to a couple of LINX meetings a year as it’s a great place to catch up with what’s going on in the world of internet plumbing. Laymen will probably not understand the allusion to plumbing. The internet is made up of lots of “pipes”. A pipe is usually measured as a multiple of Gigs (1x, 10x, 100x) is connected to a port, one at each end of the pipe (obv).

In the internet plumbing world the bigger your pipe the bigger your bragging rights. It’s all about shifting data. Timico I’m pleased to say uses 10Gig ports at its peering exchanges – LINX and LONAP. There is only one 100Gig port at LINX and that belongs to BT. I understand there are more in the pipeline.

The internet as you may know is made up of tens of thousands of autonomous networks. The chances are your favourite website is not hosted by the same network operator that provides you with your connectivity. What your ISP does is it connects its own network to every other network on the internet which it partly does via peering exchanges.

A peering exchange is a point at which networks connect to each other for the sharing of internet traffic. Being a member of LINX brings us lots of benefits. You can get an idea of this from the LINX stats:

468 members (39 new applications in 2013 so it’s growing)
1135 connected member ports
362 member-facing 1GigE ports
631 member-facing 10GigE ports
1 member-facing 100GigE port
over 1.618 Tb/sec of peak traffic (swoon)
6.792 Tb of connected capacity (so notionally plenty of headroom)
58 member countries

Peering at LINX connects us to a large chunk of the internet at relatively low cost. More from LINX81 as it happens.

Trefor Davies

By Trefor Davies

Liver of life, father of four, CTO of, writer, poet,

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