"Dorian R. Kim" writes:
This sort of proposal, i.e. building a Higher Ed private network for
research, is in and of itself not such a bad thing.
The grow of Internet since NSFNet shut down has put serious strains on the
infrastructure that researchy folks used to use to do(and still do) their
various work on.
You know, maybe I'm crazy but I rarely see the troubles that people
mention so often.
When I'm going between my site and another site on the net, if both
ends are unloaded, I typically get bandwidth equal to the smaller of
the two pipes into the net. Its very rare that I don't get transfer
times near the maximum expected, even when one of the pipes is
attached to a mediocre provider. (Really bad providers are another
story, but I luckily can usually convince my clients not to use them).
Of course, if I'm communicating to a site that seven thousand other
people are talking to I'll get low performance, but between my clients
on new unloaded connections I rarely see any trouble. Every once in a
while someone's one router to somewhere critical melts down and
suddenly there is a massive bandwidth shortage over some provider's
backbone, but usually (call it at least 23 hours a day) everything is
Now, I'm not satisfied with the overall reliability -- one hour a day
of not being able to get to an arbitrarily selected site on the net
doesn't seem good at all, especially compared with the phone system,
and especially if that one hour happens to be the hour that the new
economic statistics just were posted to the commerce department's FTP
site and people end up staying late waiting for the thing to get on
line so they can start the overnight batch calculations. However,
overall, things are pretty good -- I don't see these massive shortages
of bandwidth that people are talking about.
Seems to me that if the university researchers are sick of competing
with the undergrads, either the university could get a fatter pipe, or
they could priority queue the traffic from the researchers, and either
way they would probably win. Even with all the well-publicized growing
pains at the providers, I think the trouble is most likely at the end
points, and not in the providers.
Am I crazy? Are other people seeing massive bandwidth shortages that I
just haven't noticed? (There are some of these occassionally for a
week or two on some provider, but they rarely seem to last long.)