Peering Policies and Route Servers

M. Christopher Davies mcd at
Tue Apr 30 01:59:34 UTC 1996

On Mon, 29 Apr 1996, Nathan Stratton wrote:
> On Mon, 29 Apr 1996, Ali Marashi wrote:
> > (2) Could anyone share opinions/facts regarding why organizations may or
> > may not exchange routes via the Route Servers rather than direct peering
> > relationships at the NAPs?
> Well, because say that Sprint and MCI would peer, a provider would only
> just stay at one NAP. That provider could then sell large dedicated
> connections and in a way do it on Sprint's and MCI's network. I think they
> they are trying to keep a lot of startups like me from growing and being a
> large competitor.

I think you've completely missed the boat on 1) what it means to peer, 
and 2) why one would peer with you.

The idea (and I may be wrong here) that the big 6 may or may not choose 
to peer with you is because they have no contract to provide TRANSIT for 
your packets, but will gladly accept your packets for MCI or Sprint 
connected sites.  The idea behind peering is that it is a shared dropoff 
point, but not a free transit to wherever on the net you want to go.

If you peer, it is expected that you will not utilize MCI's (as an
example) network to talk to a non-MCI connected site on the other side of
the country just because you don't have a link at Mae-West.  As a result
you wouldn't need any expensive circuits to build your network and you 
could 'take' service from your competitors to deliver your packets.  
Peering means sharing, not taking advantage of or using of someone else's 
service or backbone to make a profit (although this does happen all too 

Number two, what benefit is it to MCI to peer with you since you 
obviously want to rest on the backbones of the other providers and try 
and not pay a network provider good money to build a backbone that you 
don't have to manage?  What traffic do you generate that would benefit 
MCI from peering with you?

That, I believe, is the reason that people don't peer as readily as you 
want them to.

Making a comment that the big 6 are restraining trade certainly won't win
you points with the people you're trying to get peering arrangements with. 
Work cooperatively, not adversarily to get your peering arrangements.  And
have a good reason for the big 6 to want to peer with you other than, 'I
want cheaper transit'

When you build a redundant, coast to coast network, will you deliver my 
packets for free? I didn't think so.

(*back into the deep*)
Chris Davies    Office:      202-541-9000
VCI		FAX: 202-723-9504     24x7 Direct: 202-541-9006

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