Hans-Werner Braun hwb at
Tue Sep 6 02:38:18 UTC 1994

>>>>  to get connectivity to all govt-$ nets you must connect to all NAPs. 
>This is not true.
>The way the NSF awards to the RNPs is written, for PIPEX, or any other
>network, to get to an US R&E customer of the regional, it is sufficient
>for you to connect to only one NSFNET NAP.
>cheers, peter

To extend on Peter's cheers, the new awards are for a transitionary
phase where the Internet is becoming more and more of a commercial
service offering. Reliability and integrity and scale of the Internet
is so ways different from where it was at the time the NSFNET started,
but there is also a significant dependence on the network by the NSFNET
clientele, specifically the R&E community. As NSF is phasing out direct
subsidy for a national interconnect network, and for the time being and
at declining contribution over the next few years gives the next level
of networks (the regional/mid-levels) the ability to acquire
interconnect services on their own, NSF perceives an obligation for the
network not to get compartmentalized over the forseeable future. As
such, as Peter said, the way the NSF awards to the RNPs are written,
their interconnect service providers have to all connect to multiple
specific neutral interconnect points, to ensure the weave is being held
together, until the network matures even further. The NAP service
providers, as long as they conform to their agreement with the NSF, are
free to expand the NAPs and attract more clients. Those clients can
connect to any or all NAPs, and there is no reason some buddies and
their dog cannot go off and build just another NAP, by whatever name
they choose to give it. It is just a network interconnect point, after
all, they had names like FEBA, FIX, CIX, GIX, MAE, and so on before,
and will have new names in the future. Things are evolving, and that is
just fine, as long as we can keep some measure of integrity of the
network. As important as the NSFNET may have been, pioneers having
shown the way that a commercial service is viable, such as PSI and
Alternet, should be cheered, as I believe that it dramatically improved
the long term survival chance of the network, and a path for a graceful
transition away from federal subsidy, while retaining stability.


More information about the NANOG mailing list