CIX routing service (was Re: AGIS/DIGEX)

  - CIX
    - on-the-fly trust-the-providers routing updates
    - media sensing through BGP peering sessions
    - router could overload

simple peering at major exchange points. Instead of having people all
try to peer with each other, a lengthy process and complex to manage),
why not have CIX put a router in any exchange point and say, "Here CIX
members, peer with this router and you'll get routing to every other

No. That wouldn't work w/ CIX. It'd have to be some other entity.
Current CIX members wouldn't go for it.

CIX member at the exchange point." The "big ISPs" will still peer
with each other directly, even privately, but they have enough traffic
in between them to make it worthwhile. New or small ISPs would be the
primary benefactors.

I've been thinking about this. Something like an MLPA, but without even
the needed formality. Basically, a 2501 or 2 or 3 at exchange points
acting as route reflectors might be handy for smaller ISPs who wanted
to say "I'll peer with anyone here to get better connectivity to them".

Since noone with > a few k routes is going to participate, 2501s will
have more than enough memory, and a 2501 can handle 20-30 such peers
without dying when reloaded. And all sessions would be screened against
announcing 1673, 3561, 701, 174, 4200, 1239, 1, etc... (in no particular
order) to the boxes, thus guaranteeing that screwups would be minimized.

Eventually, perhaps an automated web site to allow people to build in
the access filters that the boxes would apply to them - either on an
as-path or per-route basis.

Yes, this can be done simply (pretty simply, that is) through the RA,
but the idea would be to sign up and say "Hey, I don't have time to
deal with the peering requests, just peer with the MLPA-router and
I'll hear you and you'll hear me".

Someone would have to moderate/arbitrate it, but since noone would be
getting transit through this thing, if someone was dropped from it for
a day or two while they got their shit in gear nothing critical would
be affected.

Anyway, it's possible that the ISP/C might sponsor something - though
the thought might be that you'd have to be an ISP/C member to participate
but that noone would be required to peer or participate just because they
were an ISP/C member.

It's possible that we could cooperate with some other providers (all of
whom have 24x7 NOCs) to pass of NOC-stewardship of the routers...

Some would say that CIX gets saturated. Yes, CIX-West was at one
time fatally saturated on incoming bit pipes (not necessarily CIX's
fault), but saturation can be reduced or eliminated by:
  - having multiple CIX routers - one set at every major
    exchange point (no, there's no bacbone in between).
  - rate-limiting peers to a maximum of XX Mbps (ATM, yes;
    possible on GigaSwitchs or FDDIs?).
  - detecting then encouraging peers with more than X Mbps of
    traffic (on average) to offload traffic to direct peering
    or other exchange points.
  - Using multiple iBGP routers at an exchange point.

I think route reflecting is a much better idea than trying to build
something which would actually pass data through it.

Then again, it doesn't have to be CIX; it just seems natural since
they've been running CIX-West for oh-so-long. A bunch of smart
BGP people can go out, get some money, buy the equipment, install it,
and have ISPs pay them for the service.

I don't think this is really a new idea, nor really my concern, but
I see two of my service providers struggling to get new peering and
think, "There's got to be a better way."

... just something to think about.

It's a thought that I have had. I think this is doable and helpful.
It seems that the larger exchanges are becoming multiple things to
multiple people. Certainly ISPs in the DC and Bay areas are connecting
to larger exchanges hoping to get access to the larger providers - but
also (and more realistically) to get better connectivity between

The key idea here (since all of this can be done through the RA anyway)
is just to save the time of 30 providers trying to coordinate with 30
other providers re: "Do you want to peer with me?".


I pinged the RA folks about this a few months back, and they said
they tried setting up "open peering" macros at one time without
much interest from ISPs. Maybe it's time to try again. The link-level
cognizance of the RA is also a concern, but I understand this is
(still) being addressed.

I for one would like to see the work of the RA continue and grow,
since none of the NAPs themselves seem overly interested in providing
much in the way of "value-added" functionality beyond their link-level
switching (which is not a criticism, just a statement of fact). If
the RA can obtain funding contributions via the NAPs for this
open-peering macro service, then I think this would be a good-thing.

If I could scoop up routes of many of the smaller ISPs through the
RA at any NAP I would - as would many with open peering policies
I suspect. I wonder what the ratio of open/restricted peering
policies is at the NAPs/MAEs? If enough ISPs mail me
details of which NAPs they're at and whether they would peer
with everyone or not, I'll summarise and present this info.