the Internet Backbone

From: Avi Freedman <>
And they solicit our customers, sigh.

And someone with 2 T1s to Sprint has been saying "We are *the* Internet
Backbone in South Jersey".

Everyone (of importance) agrees that in order to claim you're a backbone
you have to (now, not a year ago) be connected to at least 2 public NAPs/MAEs
and have at least one circuit that runs at DS3 or higher speed.

No, that is not correct.

A US Internet "backbone" is one which connects to ALL the NAP/MAEs in
the US. Not just two. All of them.

Perhaps you can tell me where PSI connects, good sir...
By my count it's MAE-East and CIX and nowhere else.
There are a few major backbones not at the Chicago NAP.
And none of the majors are at MAE-Chicago or any of the MAEs other
than East and West.

Everyone else is just a "regional", of one size or another.

If anyone solicits your customers saying otherwise, report them for
false advertising to the FTC, and sue the bastards.



While I agree with the point Avi was trying to make I thought I might
point out the little tidbit below:
traceroute to (, 30 hops max, 40 byte packets
7 Hssi3/0.San-Jose6.CA.Alter.Net ( 142.59 ms 72.272 ms 88.32 ms
8 ( 145.853 ms 145.555 ms 136.282 ms
9 ( 208.164 ms 180.217 ms 140.287 ms
10 ( 208.077 ms 154.819 ms 220.8 ms

What are the odds that "" is actually a PSI router at

Christopher E Stefan
System Administrator Home: (206) 706-0945
Ironhorse Software, Inc. Work: (206) 783-6636 finger for PGP key

It is not symmetrical.

64 bytes from icmp_seq=1 ttl=249 time=273 ms
RR: -------------------------
        Fddi0/0.San-Jose6.CA.Alter.Net ( ( ( (
        Fddi0/0.Vienna1.VA.Alter.Net (
        Hssi2/0.Vienna6.VA.Alter.Net (

From Alternet to PSI is via MAE-WEST but not vice versa.

Here's the traceroute. Note the large jump in response time
at the CIX which confirms the above

traceroute to (, 30 hops max, 40 byte packets
3 Fddi0/0.San-Jose3.CA.Alter.Net ( 8 ms 9 ms 8 ms
4 ( 13 ms 13 ms 12 ms
5 ( 86 ms 90 ms 89 ms
6 ( 91 ms 89 ms 88 ms