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Re: Sending vs requesting. Was: Re: Sprint / Cogent
- From: Barrett Lyon
- Date: Sat Nov 01 13:30:34 2008
To further your point about the dynamics of peering:
Not to sound overly altruistic, but nowhere in there did I see, "it's
good for the Internet". If peering was less of a raw business
decision, the Internet would be a better place. In this case, if they
left it status quo and congested, at least users could send smoke
signals across the two networks and could at least communicate.
The implications of this depeering could be pretty severe. If you dive
into business ethics, there's some pretty serious moral dilemmas
involved with cutting communications between two major networks. This
could be taken to an extreme if it causes VoIP calls to fail and
ultimately disrupts someone's 911 calling. In less reaching
situations, someone can't SMS with their wife to know what to bring
home from the grocery store. Regardless of how stupid relying on the
Internet is (I know it's sad we can't) I do feel networks have a moral
responsibility to provide continuity.
As you know, beyond business, peering can decrease latency, increase
throughput, and provide better network engineering, thus increasing
the scale of the overall Internet. As a technologist and entrepreneur
I try to do what's best for the Internet in my peering decisions
rather than what Bill Lumbergh would say, "umm yeah, do what's best
for the company".
In this case, it's very clear that customers are impacted and the
Internet as a whole suffers, which is really unfortunate. The end
result of a business decision has been to sacrifice the customer's
needs, trust, and ability to communicate. It's a bad maxim to
subscribe to! I really hope that other networks do apply more
thinking into peering than just what's best for business -- it sure
shows off an ugly underbelly.
On Nov 1, 2008, at 9:45 AM, Patrick W. Gilmore wrote:
On Nov 1, 2008, at 12:05 PM, Chris Adams wrote:
Once upon a time, bas <[email protected]> said:
I've heard eyeball networks refer to traffic flows as sending too..
"You content hosters are sending us too much traffic, we want
upgrade ports and transport all that traffic" Complete reverse
imho. It is always eyeball network customers that request data.
(except for a small portion of iphone/blackberry push email, but
can't account for much.)
Traffic sources tend to be concentrated in large data centers
service), while traffic sinks (DSL, cable, wireless) are widespread
costly to upgrade. The sink customers don't want to pay more (and
there's at least some competition), so the sink providers look to see
where else they get income to pay for their needed network upgrades.
Combined with hot-potato routing, the first part of that paragraph
is a fancy way of saying "I have to carry the large packet a long
way, you have to carry the small packet a long way". It is not
"fair". This is almost a good reason, but not quite. (It can also
be offset by moving the source next to the sink, through cold-potato
routing / MEDs, anycast, CDNs, etc.)
The second part is a good business reason. Profitable revenue is
good, costs are bad.
There are good business reasons not to pay the sink as well. But
neither decision is obvious or the same for everyone.
Peering is complicated, people should stop trying to generalize it.
Peering is a business tool. For years & years many people have
claimed that to "peer" you must be equal. Bullshit. If I can make
more or spend less by peering, I should do it. If not, I should
not. Full stop. Notice the complete lack of regard for how big you
are, how much capacity your backbone has, how many ASes are
downstream of you, etc.? When I go to buy routers or hire employees
or any other business transaction, I don't say "that router vendor
is making more money than I am, so I won't buy from him". If people
applied "peering" logic to anything else, they'd be laughed out of a
Don't know about you, but I am in business to make money, not
measure my anatomy. How big the next guy is doesn't enter into my
equation - other than how it affects my bottom line.
To be clear, it is entirely possible that peering does not save you
money. Vijay is right, most people can't measure their COGS to save
their life. And if the network in question cannot, there's no way
in hell the prospective peer can. If you are a huge point source of
traffic and want to peer, I may save money by saying no and paying a
transit provider to deliver the packet to me where I want it
(especially at today's prices). Fiber, routers, colo, NOC
employees, engineers, etc., are all not free ya know.
You can claim my customers asked for the data and therefore I have a
requirement to peer, but you would be deluded. What my customer and
I have agreed has _nothing_ to do with you or your needs. You don't
tell me how to run my network, and I won't tell you how to run
On the flip side, saying "you are not on 3 continents so I will not
peer" is stupid of not peering costs you millions a year. Stupid
decisions abound in the peering ecosystem.
There are tons of other _business_ reasons to peer, or not to peer.
But "we're equal" or "your customer asked for it" are not reasons,
stop using them.