XO - a Tier 1 or not?

Patrick W. Gilmore patrick at ianai.net
Tue Jul 28 15:26:01 UTC 2009

On Jul 28, 2009, at 11:18 AM, Pekka Savola wrote:
> On Tue, 28 Jul 2009, Charles Mills wrote:
>> Is XO Communications a Tier 1 ISP?
> ...
>> Any help here?  Thanks as always.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tier_1_network

Having written a good portion of that page, in the interest of full  
disclosure, I would like to point out some of the comments made while  
I was editing (and re-editing) the page.

I do not _know_ XO has settlement agreements with Sprint & L3.  Such  
contracts are covered by NDA, so (supposedly) only certain people  
inside Sprint, L3, and XO know whether XO is paying settlements.

That said, does it matter?  Settlement-Based may actually have a  
slight benefit over Settlement Free, as links which generate revenue  
may get upgraded faster than links which do not.

Perhaps more importantly, does Transit Free matter?  A network which  
has two diverse transit providers is orders of magnitude less likely  
to be affected by bifurcation events than transit free networks.

Not to mention many non-transit free networks have better quality and  
service, IMHO, than some transit free networks.

But hey, your money, your bits, so your decision.   You want to buy  
from XO because they are Transit Free, or not buy from them because  
they are not Tier One, so be it.  What's that line about competitors  
and encouragement... ? =)


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