XO - a Tier 1 or not?

Patrick W. Gilmore patrick at ianai.net
Sat Aug 1 02:10:50 CDT 2009

On Jul 28, 2009, at 11:36 AM, John van Oppen wrote:

> XO has been offering a product lately that is all routes except level3
> and sprint which leads me to believe that they pay both of those
> peers...

Or there is a settlement in place, which is kinda-sortta the same  
thing, only not necessarily.

Or they are worried about their ratios to those two networks.  Which  
may be because of settlements.

Or they might have capacity issues to those networks _because_ they do  
not pay those networks.

Or ....

Or you could be right. :)


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Justin M. Streiner [mailto:streiner at cluebyfour.org]
> Sent: Tuesday, July 28, 2009 8:31 AM
> To: nanog at nanog.org
> Subject: Re: XO - a Tier 1 or not?
> On Tue, 28 Jul 2009, Charles Mills wrote:
>> Trying to sort through the marketecture and salesman speak and get a
>> definitive answer.
>> I figure the NANOGers would be able to give me some input.
>> Is XO Communications a Tier 1 ISP?
> Do the best of my knowledge, no.  The definition of 'Tier 1' is
> something
> of a moving target based on who you ask, but the most commonly stated
> criteria I've seen over the years are:
> 1. The provider does not buy IP transit from anyone - all traffic is
> moved
>   on settlement-free public or private interconnects.  That's not to
> say
>   that the provider doesn't buy non-IP services (IRUs, lambdas,
> easements,
>   etc) from other providers on occasion.
> 2. The provider lives in the default-free zone, which is pretty much a
>   re-statement of point 1.
> I'll leave discussions about geographical coverage out of it for now.
> That said, I don't think XO meets the criteria above.  I'm not 100%
> certain, but I don't think they're totally settlement-free.  Other
> providers like Cogent would fall into this bucket as well.
> However, I also wouldn't get too hung up on tiers.  Many very  
> reliable,
> competent, and responsive providers providers but transit to handle at
> least some portion of their traffic.  It also depends on what sort of
> service you need.  For example, if you need a big MPLS pipe to another
> country, there are a limited number of providers who can do that, so
> they
> would tend to be the big guys.  However, if you just need general IP
> transit, your options open up quite a bit.
> jms

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