Anyone got numbers on peering vs transit?

Peter Cohen peterattelia at
Fri May 5 13:19:14 UTC 2006

On 5/5/06, Richard A Steenbergen <ras at> wrote:
> On Fri, May 05, 2006 at 10:11:31AM +0300, Aleksi Suhonen wrote:
> >
> > I forgot to stress that I'm particularly interested in the ratio
> > between private and public peering.
> The answer is, it depends. In any given region, prevailing market
> conditions (the price of transit, etc), the costs of ix ports, the costs
> of colo and fiber xconns, the geographic distribution of peers, and the
> attitudes towards public and private peering are all going to have a huge
> impact.
> For example, public peering in Europe is FAR more pervasive than it is in
> the US. Obvious reasons for this include:
> European IX's                           US IX's
> * Largely run by non-profits            * Largely run by for-profits
> * Largely un-associated with colos      * Largely run by colo operators
> * Early adopters of new tech like 10GE  * Significantly lagging on new tech
> * IX ports are generally very cheap     * Same ports usually cost 3-8x more
> * Larger numbers of smaller peers       * Smaller numbers of larger peers
> * Lots of language specific content     * Lots of globally targetted content
> Obviously market economics drive public peering much more in Europe than
> in the US. To put it into perspective, the amount of traffic exchange by a
> single "large" IX (such as AMS-IX) is roughly equal to all of the IX's in
> the US combined. That same amount of traffic is roughly 1/2 (or less) of
> the the traffic exchanged by a single "large" network (such as Cogent,
> Level3, AT&T, ATDN, etc) via private peering.
> --
> Richard A Steenbergen <ras at>
> GPG Key ID: 0xF8B12CBC (7535 7F59 8204 ED1F CC1C 53AF 4C41 5ECA F8B1 2CBC)

Too add some to the great Ras, for us, much has changed over the
years, as there has been more consolidation of facilities to be in,
globally, as well as changes in hardware, decreases in public and
private peering costs, cheaper fiber/dwdm, the end of atm, etc... So..
that being said, i would guess that many so-called large EU networks
would have ~ 5% of their traffic on public exchanges, and many of
those are not in USA exchanges or asian ones if their network goes
there.  I would also guess that the greater, smaller networks are more
valuable to exchanges than the so-called larger networks from a
financial perspective, since they are probably sending /receiving much
more traffic.
Some exchanges publish their customer's mbs of connectivity and you
can draw your own conclusion from someone with 1000mbs vs. 10000Mbs of
peering capacity at an exchange.  I think amsix is the one off the top
of my head that tells who/where/mbs to the switches.  Lastly, there
are exchanges that allow for transit to be sold over them vs. not, and
that would greatly increase the possibility of getting a larger
network in there as well.   Send me a private message if you want some
specifics as far as i can give them about 1299.

Peter Cohen

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