links on the blink (fwd)

One would think there is a nice little business in running exchange
points around the country. Get co-lo space on a contract that will
let you sub-let, put in a nice FDDI Gigaswitch, heavy-duty power
with generator backup, good remote hands, plenty of DS3 entrance
facilities (ideally on OC12 or faster sonet for growth!), monitoring
and statistics gathering facilities, out-of-band management network,
and a nice NOC somewhere to coordinate with all your customers.

Put locations in major metro areas and go to town. You may need
some up-front cash, but hey, this Internet thing is hot, so you
can probably find investors (big grin).

So how much do you have to charge subscribers to make this work?


(1) Find out whether anyone has a clue about how to add more major
    exchange points and actually usefully use them in their routing fabric.

But anyway:

I was looking at the Tech Data catalog (we've been very happy with a
$3k 24-port 3com Etherswitch we got from them). I found:

Digital GIGAswitch platform with a 2-port FDDI line
card; switches up to 3.6Gbps, forwards at 290kpps per
port, 11 slots, FDDI point to point and ring connections,
future ATM ready......................................... $30,000 $21,784

GIGAswitch 2-port FDDI Line Card, hot swappable.......... $ 9,000 $ 6,525
GIGAswitch 4-port FDDI Line Card, hot swappable.......... $12,500 $ 88085

A backup switching proc. is $15k, a backup 20amp power supply $2k.
Last time I was at MAE-East, I only remember < 20 ports on the Gigaswitch.
And there's no generator @ MAE-East. And I'm not sure that those batteries
mean diddly. In Philly, the batteries are for DC only. @ MFS, we're on
our own for AC backup.

Anyway, with some etherswitches with FDDI uplinks and a GIGAswitch or
two, you're off. I don't have list prices on the Catalyst series...

Then, as mentioned above, NOC & telco facilities, and you're off.
We're talking with an IXC about taking an OC3 from Pennsauken to
NYC and handing FDDI off for $4k and Ethernets for $2k @ 60 Hudson.
We ourselves don't have an interest in it, but hey...

Of course, an extended NY Nap that hits 60 Hudson, a building in Philly,
and Pennsauken could be interesting... I don't know how crazy a mac-level
bridged medium like a bridged FDDI in 3 locations many ms apart would
function. And the technology they're thinking of using doesn't scale well -
Netedges speaking to each other over OC3s.

But if they can get 4 customers @ $4k per, they'll do it.