Vadim Antonov avg at
Tue Apr 2 10:40:46 UTC 1996

Bob Metcalfe wrote:

>Note, I have never predicted "the death of the Internet," only catastrophic
>collapse(s) during 1996, which is "a good calibration" of the rest of your
>objections (below).

One does not need to be Nostradamus to predict that s*t happens.
It happened in the past, many times, too.  Like when me and Sean
installed a just-baked SSE into a DC box and it looked fine but
screwed nearly all connectivity to Europe for few hours when we were
trying to figure out what was going on.  Or when FIX-E<->ICM-DC
Bell Atlantic's DS-3 was flapping like mad when moon was
in the wrong phase and BA did nothing to fix it for months.  Or when
some sequence of 1s and 0s was triggering some bulls*t alarms in
Sprint fiber network so causing shutdowns on the entire OC-24 trunk.
Or when a bogus static route in a Sprint's box was causing ANS's
version of gated to go banana and drop BGP sessions.  Or many many
more occasions when "Bysantine-mode failure" becomes ugly reality in
the middle of the night so causing more than few people to be dragged
out of beds.

As long as Internet technology is freaking bleeding edge and operators
are in the "code of the day" club catastrophes are bound to happen.

>Jerry, Jerry, Jerry, the problem is not that the Internet's chief 100
>engineers, whoever they are, fail to report their problems to me, it's that
>they (you?) fail to report them to anybody, including to each other, which
>is half our problem.

That is simply not true.  The backbone engineering society is tightly
knit and quite often backbone engineers are simply personal friends.
I certainly never had a problem with people refusing to fix problems
within their domains (well, PSI's TWD is not an operational problem).
The organization-level corrdination is often broken at operators level,
but that is merely a function of severe shortage of qualified personnel
and inadequate compensation for the high-stress job.

>Settlements, "wrong on the face?"  Or are you just too busy busy busy
>defensive to argue?

Before you talk of settlements answer the simple question --
a packet travelled from provider A to provider B.  Who should pay
to whom?  Then, please, stop perpetuating nonsense.

>So, you say, increasing Internet diameters (hops) are only of concern to
>whiners like me?  There are no whiners LIKE me.  I am THE whiner.  And hops
>ARE a first class problem, Jerry, or are you clueless about how
>store-and-forward packet switching actually really works?

I was in a backbone engineer's skin for quite a few years, and "hops" 
per se never were a problem.  In fact, store-and-forward delays are
a mere fraction of wire propagation delays -- do a traceroute coast-to-coast,
look at delays and calculate how it relates to distance divided by speed of light.
Indeed, you're the first person concerned with the growth of diameter
(which is, BTW, logarithmic to size of the network). 


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