The Attitude (was: the Internet Backbone)

William Allen Simpson wsimpson at
Mon Apr 15 16:42:24 UTC 1996

> From: "Erik E. Fair" (Internet Architect) <fair at>
> Perhaps the easy way out is to suggest that educating the ISPs as to
> what constitutes good behavior at an exchange (routing system stability
> and reliable packet delivery) is the responsibility of the exchange
> operators,

This is not just the easy way out, I believe that it is the only way out.

Then, we don't have the problem of all those multiple peering
agreements.  Instead, just one with the exchange.

Also, this eliminates the problem of each ISP trying to "filter" bogus
routes.  Instead, the exchange operators will handle that problem.

Indeed, I think that this is/was a major impetus for "policy-based"
routing in the first place (reading the old RFCs), and a clear reason we
need the Routing Arbiter!

> and it might even be possible to enforce some interesting
> policies in that regard in the route servers (e.g. if you have more
> than N routing or BGP peer transitions per time period, the route
> server will refuse to peer with you for 48 hours - think of it as the
> hold-down or damper from Hell).
Interesting concept!

> I certainly think that to the extent that the exchange operators can
> measure such things as routing and peer stability, it is in everyone's
> interest to see the numbers (except those ISPs who are unstable). Who
> knows? A series good reports from exchange operators about an ISP might
> lead to offers of private peering arrangements outside of the exchange,
> to the benefit of the ISP. Similar to the way that having a good credit
> record seems to lead to endless offers of more credit.
I understood that the RA contract provided for these measurements, and
agree that they would be a good thing!

WSimpson at
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