poll: are any sizable exchange points using gigabit ether?

Steve Feldman feldman at mfst.com
Wed Dec 23 19:38:23 UTC 1998

> How many network people still have bad dreams about NetEdges? MFS did just 
> what you are proposing, and the number of nasty corner cases showed that this 
> was just not a good idea.

Me, for one. :)

Using bridges devices to carry LAN traffic
across the wide area presents its own "interesting"
set of problems.  But it is possible to make it work.

For co-located routers, using gig-ether switches as
an alternative to Gigaswitches should be a fine idea,
in theory anyway.

Assuming of course the switches are sufficiently
beefy, and behave well.  (Another source of bad dreams...)

LAN and virtual-circuit based exchanges do solve slightly
different problems, though.

A vc fabric (such as ATM) can be used where the peers
want something looking more like "virtual private peering"
with some enforcement by the exchange medium.  And something
that runs directly over the existing transmission
infrastructure (SONET) is better for peers who don't
want to colocate routers, since there doesn't have
to be a performance penalty or the added complexity of
protocol translation.

Switched LANs are great when everyone is already in the
same room, and the exchange medium isn't reqired to
enforce peering policy.

And of course true private peering will continue to
have a major role.


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