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Midwest Internet Exchange

Member Spotlight: On-Ramp Indiana (AS: 14333)

MidWest-IX is starting a new series to highlight our exchange members.  This will be an ongoing series to highlight what companies on the exchange can offer.

 

On-Ramp Indiana (ORI.NET) ASN 14333 is a full-service internet provider and IT consulting company located in Noblesville, Indiana.   Their primary services are Fixed Wireless Broadband, Fiber-Based Internet, Server Co-Location, Cloud Server Hosting, Data Center Services, and Wireless LAN/WAN Deployment and Consulting.   ORI is a Microsoft Office 365 partner with considerable expertise in the Microsoft Exchange email platform.   ORI.NET also is a provider of website hosting and corporate email solutions.

Their broadband Internet is available throughout the Indianapolis Metropolitan area, including Indianapolis, Plainfield, Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Westfield, Pendleton, Ingalls, Cicero, Arcadia, and Sharpsville.   Their fixed wireless broadband offers several options to cover residential, small business, all the way up to mission-critical enterprise applications.      Their dedicated fixed wireless uses the latest licensed enterprise wireless, providing fiber replacement, fiber supplement, and fiber alternative to area businesses and multi-tenant buildings.    Speeds of a gigabit or faster are available!   They maintain a presence in 3 Indianapolis Data Centers, which allows for flexible and competitive offerings for companies looking to co-locate servers obtain local cloud-based services, or work with a trusted website and corporate email hosting provider.

We here at ORI.NET have found several advantages to being a FD-IX exchange member.    Our broadband subscribers represent tens of thousands of content consumers, and having access to that content without leaving the data center saves money on transit costs, as well as providing a lower latency and optimal path for the best customer experience.     Since we host approximately 1000 websites and 10,000 email users, we also see quite a bit of traffic originating from FD-IX to access our network content as well.     Keeping traffic local just makes sense for ORI from cost, performance, and redundancy perspective.   The benefits keep growing as each new member joins the exchange.

On-Ramp can be contacted at sales@ori.net, 317-774-2100, or via their website at http://www.ori.net.

Real World Indianapolis network

Today we bring you an example of one of our networks in Indianapolis. This network has a single upstream transit connection and a connection to MidWest-IX.  Under their MidWest-IX connection, they have a couple of direct peers and are peered with the route servers.  The following graphs illustrate their traffic flows for the past 2 days.

The stats break down like this:

Total network consumption: Roughly 1.2 Gigabits at peak
Total offload to MidWest-IX: approximately 400 megs at peak.
Total left to Transit: approximately 800 megs at peak.

This network is offloading approximately 1/3 of their traffic onto MidWest-IX.  This traffic experiences lower latency than if it were to go over the transit connection along with other benefits.

Would you like lower latency traffic to over 25 peers? Contact MidWest-IX today.

Google (AS36040) joins us in St. Louis

Google ‘s AS36040 has joined us in St. Louis.

MidWest-IX seeks Sales leader

MidWest-IX is looking for a motivated self-starter to head our sales team.  We are looking for a motivated self-starter who can help us close deals.  This position is a part-time commission based with a draw to start with.  Opportunity to move into more for the right candidate.  This job is ideal for a retired or semi-retired telecom sales executive.   You will be selling our exchange products as well as complimentary products from partner companies.

Duties
-Collaborates with executive team on leads
-Follow up with clients from start to finish
-Suggests strategy relative to sales and sales process

Requirements
-Familiarity with Internet concepts such as peering and interconnection.
-Basic familiarity with how networks work
-Strong communication and interpersonal skills
-Ability to follow client through full sales life cycle.

Please send resumes and contact info to support@midwest-ix.com for more details. Preference given to markets we operate in with greater preference on Indianapolis.

 

Speedtest.net Updates – June 2017

I know I said I’d be doing this monthly and that I haven’t. Quite a few things are more important than doing blog posts about speedtest.net tests, so the post has been delayed.  🙂

For all time as of this evening, our fastest download was from Indiana University at 934,629 kilobits/s, while our fastest upload was 924,221 kilobits/s from iQuest Internet. These were both done on a PC. We’re assuming the GigE to the server is the limitation here. Hopefully in the next month that’ll be rectified. I think they need to add some more precision to their latency test as we have a few dozen tests with 0 ms of latency. Either those were broken tests or they were done in the Indianapolis area. A couple do say they were done in Indianapolis, so I suppose it is possible. Otherwise we do have a TON of 1 ms tests in Indianapolis to take the cake.

As far as mobile devices, we’ve got several entries via the Android app from Smithville Digital that are over 800 megabits/s, but don’t list a connection type. Are there Android devices with GigE ports? Excluding those, the fastest is still with Android at 463,434 kilobits/s download on Indiana Fiber Network and 605,892 upload also on Indiana Fiber network. Those were obviously both done over Wi-Fi. If we exclude Wi-Fi (and things that look to be Wi-Fi, such as LTE from a provider that doesn’t do LTE), the king of the heap is Sprint on Android at 215,149 kilobits/s for download and AT&T Android at 50,396 kilobits/s. The lowest latency from a mobile device was a 1 ms iPhone on Cogent. Filtering out WiFi and obviously broken tests, we have 24 ms on Verizon Android. We do have some lower iPhone tests, but they seem to be too low to be valid.

Now, the fun stuff. Who’s the worst? That’s hard to say we have a bunch of 0, 1, 2 kilobits/s tests from mobile devices, both on LTE and WiFi. We assume those were all due to signal issues. There were no obvious points to separate bad signal from usable signals for either platform in either direction. For PC based tests, we at least were able to get up to 14 kilobits/s down (Frontier in Valparaiso) and 3 kilobits/s up on Altius in Alexandria. The worst latency was 3,579 ms to an iPhone on AT&T U-Verse. Think mobile devices being slow is obvious? A PC from Smithville Digital didn’t do much better at 3,056 ms.

Open-IX statement updated

MidWest-IX has updated our Open-IX statement for Indianapolis.

https://www.midwest-ix.com/support/openix.html

 

Peering Isn’t Dead, It’s Just Different

There was some commentary at the end of yesterday’s CHI-NOG (Chicago Network Operators Group) meeting that to quote an attendee outside of the peering community, “was a huge disservice to attendees that didn’t know any better”. The commentary was that “peering is dead” and that fostering ecosystems and interconnection is where we are and should be going. They continued that the importance of these carrier hotels wasn’t the Internet exchanges or the peering that took place, but the driving down of transit prices through increased transit competition. The Internet exchanges outside of the major markets were just community “good will” from large corporations and had an insignificant impact on performance. We don’t disagree that it’s about ecosystems where you can do things you couldn’t do before. We don’t disagree that the traditional peering models of 20 – 30 years ago are dead. We don’t disagree that competition is good and has been driving down prices in all markets. We don’t disagree that the major CDNs play a huge roll in Internet exchanges. However, if you’re new to what peering is, you don’t know the context of the comments. You’re lead to believe that these Internet exchanges are just peddling snake oil.

Peering is still very much happening and very much important. People like Midwest-IX, RVA-IX, NashIX, MGMix, etc. are bringing Internet exchanges and “peering” to people and markets where there was no established place for such activities before. Hundreds of local networks are becoming aware of the advantages of peering, be it cost, performance or additional capabilities. The community in general talks about the value in new Internet exchanges being the “unique ASNs” they bring to the table. It could be universities or other educational networks. It could be small mom and pop last mile providers, data centers, hosting companies, managed services providers, IPTV or VoIP providers. Through these Internet exchanges and the peering they facilitate, traffic is kept local. There is no longer a reason for traffic within Indiana or Missouri\southern Illinois to go to Chicago or traffic in Alabama to go to Atlanta or Dallas or both. Someone on a local ISP can now connect directly to their local university for online classes, accessing research or simply working from home without fear of an unpleasant experience due to delay and congestion.

Big content and the tech media talk about pushing content to “the edge”. That’s exactly what these Internet exchanges are doing by building out in tier 2 and 3 markets. They’re providing fabrics closer to the end-users to reduce the cost of service delivery as well as increasing the performance of said delivery. Many  of these networks are already in the facilities the exchange would be in or the data center would partner with the IX to bring the IX to their facility at the risk of becoming irrelevant in the marketplace. The cost to join at that point would vary depending on that data center’s cross connect model. Fortunately, many data centers in these markets have very operator-friendly cross connects. Regarding the performance, we continually hear from networks that join our exchanges that overall traffic increased once they joined. It could be the effects of latency on TCP performance or it could be that there was congestion above them that they’ve now managed to circumvent. There’s not a lot of opportunity for something to go wrong when source and destination are connected locally through a high-performance switched network.

The Internet has changed significantly in the past 20 – 30 years when networks were a lot more hierarchical. End user made a request that went to their ISP. It may have traveled to another ISP before hitting a “tier 1” provider and went through their peering to another “tier 1” before descending down the other side to the other “tier 2” provider or perhaps their ISP did peer directly with the other “tier 2” ISP, whether direct or through an IX. There were few to no central repositories of content. Content was everywhere and that very much supported that hierarchical system. You depended on other networks to take you to other networks because there were so many places to get content from. Today there are still as many and perhaps more places to get content from. However, traffic profiles have changed. Now a single network is the source of 1/3 of all Internet traffic, Netflix. Another third comes in aggregate from a few other sources like Akamai, Google, Microsoft, etc. An ISP that largely caters to residential customers can move as much as 85% of their traffic over to Internet exchanges. When so much of your traffic comes from so few places, the hierarchical model simply doesn’t make any sense. While not being a peer from the historical or strictest sense, an end-user ISP and big CDNs are highly complementary. It makes incredible sense to directly connect these networks together.

But aren’t most ISPs trying to inhibit usage of these streaming video sources? Don’t these big content networks already have agreements with the ISPs? That is true of many in the top 10 – 20 (maybe even more than that) ISPs, but there are literally thousands of ISPs in the United States, not to mention higher education institutions that have more users than many ISPs. The general public decries the power the largest ISPs have, yet few (consumer or technology\content leaders) are willing to give the other ISPs the tools necessary to be successful. Marginalizing them isn’t going to do anyone any good. Other than the obvious patronage of customers, these other ISPs need the tools to serve the content the customers want cost effectively. These tools may be Internet exchanges, they may be caching boxes, they may be something else entirely. However, Internet exchanges and “peering” have had a big impact on many of these networks and has helped them to continue to provide competitive services to hungry customers.

Peering isn’t dead, it’s just different and there’s nothing wrong with that.

Previous CHI-NOG peering sessions for those looking to learn more:
http://chinog.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/CHI-NOG-04-Why-Peer-v0.4-.pdf
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y43Fy4oU2XE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6O5GOBdXeA

#KeepTrafficLocal

St. Louis Moving Bits

Where are we? Our St. Louis Internet exchange in the Netrality facilities at 210 N. Tucker and 900 Walnut has been moving non-negligible bits for under three weeks. We’re doing great compared to our Indianapolis exchange’s launch, so we have high hopes for the St. Louis market. We’re already peaking at over 850 megabit/s.


What if you want to get elsewhere? We have two partners that can take you to other Internet exchanges, cloud service providers and more. The Fusion Network and Epsilon Telecommunications can get you there from your port on our Internet Exchange, just via another VLAN.

What’s next? We’re still working on getting a couple of the major content networks to sign on, but we need your help. They’re wanting to know who is already on the exchange, not who will come if they come. That means we need you to sign on ASAP so we don’t lose our momentum with them. We have a promotion available now where you sign up for a port and you don’t get a bill until you reach 10% utilization of your port. If you sign up for a 10G port, you can use up to 1G free. This is to encourage networks to sign up so we can start meeting some of the thresholds for these other networks. You can gain some benefit at no cost. Once those other content networks sign on, you’ll be seeing a ton of benefit for little cost.

and after that? Like we have done in Indianapolis, we want to be in as many facilities as we can in a market. If you’re in another St. Louis-area data center and would like us to expand to you, reach out to us. Assuming we wouldn’t lose money doing it, we’re open to expanding.

Thank you for your time and #KeepTrafficLocal.

Speedtest.net in Indy

While performing some troubleshooting with one of our customers, we determined they were using a speedtest.net server that would give sub-optimal results. We worked to put together our own speedtest.net server for the benefit of the networks on our Indianapolis IX. Not only will there now be a speedtest.net server with unrestricted performance to our IX members, but we will make the information that we collect from their customers available to them on an as-requested basis. That’s another benefit of membership without the cost and headache of running your own server, yet retaining the access to information on your customers.

The server is currently on a shared 1 gigabit connection, but in the near future, we expect to put it on a 10G connection, providing more room for 1g+ tests. Given that it is our own server, we’ll never have a shortage of capacity to the IX. Our speedtest.net server will then be the only one in Indiana able to provide such performance to end-users of many networks.

In the first 24 hours, the fastest iPhone download (with a latency of 10 ms) was 286 megabit/s over Metronet. The fastest iPhone upload with a latency of 5 ms goes to Endeavor Communications at 116 megabit/s. In the Android world, Ball State University takes the lead with one test at 10 ms attaining 256 megabit/s download and 196 megabit/s upload. As expected, mobile devices only have so much power. The fastest web-based download with a latency of 7 ms goes to Methodist Hospital of Indiana at 818 megabit/s. The lowest latency so far goes to Methodist. The fastest upload at 8 ms goes to Purdue University at 869 megabit/s. Once we get the server moved to 10G, let’s see what network will be the first to crest 1 gigabit/s.

That was the good. Here’s the bad. The highest latency goes to ViaSat – which is a satellite company – at 677 ms. Obviously there’s little they can do, given the satellite is around 25,000 miles out in space. Taking out the satellite tests, we have a Comcast test at 504 ms near Fishers, IN. I suspect there’s something wrong with their connection. The lowest speed download goes to AT&T Wireless at just 50 kilobit/s. The best dial-up was better than that. The worst upload test was on Bright House Networks at just 6 kilobit/s. Dial-up WAS up to 5 times better than that. Bright House (now Charter), Comcast and AT&T, do you guys wanna join our IX?  🙂

If you think this all sounds great and want to see your network on the leaderboard, sign up for our Indianapolis IX by the end of the month and we’ll waive the setup charge.

#KeepTrafficLocal

New IX signup Special!

Now through March 19th if you sign up for a port at our St. Louis exchange, we’ll waive the setup fee. You’ll need to supply your own cross connect, but we can get you connected as a part of a “first 60 days” special offer.

Available at the Netrality Properties facilities at 210 N. Tucker and 900 Walnut.

A GigE connection is $275/month and a 10GigE connection is $775/month.

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