US/Canada International border concerns for routing

Bill Woodcock woody at
Wed Aug 9 00:10:48 UTC 2017

> On Jul 20, 2017, at 7:01 AM, Hiers, David <David.Hiers at> wrote:
> For traffic routing, is anyone constraining cross-border routing between Canada and the US?  IOW, if you are routing from Toronto to Montreal, do you have to guarantee that the path cannot go through, say, Syracuse, New York?

No.  In fact, Bell Canada / Bell Aliant and Telus guarantee that you _will_ go through Chicago, Seattle, New York, or Ashburn, since none of them peer anywhere in Canada at all.

Last I checked (November of last year) the best-connected commercial networks (i.e. not CANARIE) in Canada were Hurricane Electric, MTS Allstream, Primus, and Zip Telecom, all of which peer at three or more Canadian IXes.  So, they’re capable of keeping traffic in Canada so long as the other end isn’t on Bell or Telus, which only sell U.S. bandwidth to Canadians.

In November, only 27% of intra-Canadian routes stayed within Canada; 64% went through the U.S.  That’s way worse than five years ago, when 60% stayed within Canada, and 38% went through the U.S.

As has been pointed out, Canada has been building IXPs…  Just not as fast as the rest of the world has.  They’re behind the global average growth rate, and behind the U.S. growth rate, which is why the problem is getting worse.  Bandwidth costs are falling faster elsewhere, so they’re importing more foreign bandwidth.


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