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Re: Cogent/Level 3 depeering

  • From: Lamar Owen
  • Date: Thu Oct 06 18:38:57 2005

On Wednesday 05 October 2005 15:52, JC Dill wrote:
> Matthew Crocker wrote:
> > Ok,  I *pay* Cogent for 'Direct Internet Access' which is IP Transit
> > service.  I *cannot* get to part of the internet via Cogent right  now.
> > *not* providing complete Internet access, I really don't  care who's
> > fault it is.

> Right now *neither* Cogent nor Level3 are providing complete Direct
> Internet Access.  This is a self-solving problem - why would anyone buy
> internet access (or renew existing contracts as they expire) from either
> of these networks when neither of them connect to the complete
> internet?[1]  

I would think in NANOG that one would know the simple fact that 'The Complete 
Internet' is complete and utter fiction, and does not exist.  What does exist 
is a complex, dynamic, even stochastic set of relationships between 
autonomous networks, who can pick and choose their relationships at whim.  We 
conveniently label this collection of relationships as 'The Internet' and 
erroneously treat it as an individual, which it is not.  Sometimes these 
individual networks are even antagonistic to each other; boo-hoo.  Cry me a 
river; they've done what they've done and most SLA's for transit don't cover 
traffic outside the transit network.  Take it up with your upstream, who will 
probably simply say it's not their problem (and it's not, unless your 
upstream is Cogent or Level3).  You cannot reach what doesn't exist, and the 
Compleat Internet does not exist.

All philosophy aside, it does bother me that a simple single depeering can 
cause such an uproar in a network supposedly immune to nuclear war (even 
though the Internet was not designed from the start to survive nuclear war; 
Paul Baran's packet-switching work aside; reference 'Where Wizards Stay Up 
Late' which quotes Taylor and others on the origins of the ARPAnet portion of 
the old Internet).  I shudder to think of what would happen if there were to 
be a real problem (I mean, really, one link (out of many thousands) is down 
and the Sky Is Falling!).  What happened to resiliency?

'Hold her steady, steady, Mr. Sulu.'
Lamar Owen
Director of Information Technology
Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute
1 PARI Drive
Rosman, NC  28772