North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Long haul latency calculation?

  • From: Robert E. Seastrom
  • Date: Sun Sep 30 22:59:37 2001

"Christopher Wolff" <[email protected]> writes:

> Dear Nanog: 
> I was wondering if there is a benchmark for long-haul circuit
> latency...  For example if I had a T1 circuit with 2900 miles
> between the two end-points (and assuming the provider is best case
> scenario) can I do something like (miles*latencyfactor) = 5 ms for
> 2900 miles?

it's gonna be a lot more than 5ms for 2900 miles.  muxes and bit
regens introduce a tiny amount of delay.  there's delay for clocking
the packet onto and off of the circuit (which becomes less significant
as the speed of the circuit goes up, but is still a couple of
milliseconds each way on a t1).  remember that airline miles and road
miles have nothing to do with circuit miles, and it is not uncommon to
see a circuit go from dc to san francisco via new york, chicago,
dallas, and los angeles.

anyway, on a 2900 mile circuit the big delay factor is the speed of
light.  in glass, this is 200 million kilometers per second, plus or
minus.  that means you will never ever ever see less than 23
milliseconds each way.  46 for a ping.  

i would say that for a t1 circuit between two places 2900 miles apart
anything under 70 ms is just dandy.