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Internet Transit Provider Claims ISPs Deliberately Allow Port Congestion 210

Posted by timothy
from the please-open-the-porthole-a-bit dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Level 3, an internet transit provider, claimed in a recent blog post that six ISPs that it regularly does business with have refused to de-congest most of their interconnect ports. 'Congestion that is permanent, has been in place for well over a year and where our peer refuses to augment capacity.' Five of the six ISPs that Level 3 refers to are in the U.S., and one is in Europe. Not surprisingly, 'the companies with the congested peering interconnects also happen to rank dead last in customer satisfaction across all industries in the U.S. Not only dead last, but by a massive statistical margin of almost three standard deviations.' Ars Technica reports that ISPs have also demanded that transit providers like Level 3 pay for access to their networks in the same manner as fringe service providers like Netflix."
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Internet Transit Provider Claims ISPs Deliberately Allow Port Congestion

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  • by hackus (159037) on Tuesday May 06, 2014 @10:39AM (#46928557) Homepage

    I do lots of different work on different AT&T networks.

    1) Equipment is ancient. Most of the AT&T network is FAST Ethernet, some switches I have worked on are from 2001. Upgrade times for these pieces of gear, incluidng one ancient 2948G distribution switch for AT&T's Uverse concentrator point?


    2) IPv6. Should be upgraded already. Really. My own house network, my lab all of it runs IPv6. Throughput gains on IPv6 vs IPv4 is impressive.

    Really, like 20% performance upgrade running the exact same protocols on a IPv6 stack.

    When will IPv6 come to the USA?

    Exactly when the upgrade approval process clears the NSA and they have the budget and the time, to rewrite all of thier spy crap to work with IPv6.

    Otherwise providers are FORBIDDEN to upgrade any portion of their networks to IPv6 without NSA direct approval.

    Sounds kinda crappy eh

    Sorta sucks I know, but you didn't think consolidation of internet service in the United States into one company is being driven by market forces do you?

    No, it is being driven by the NSA who doesn't want to work with a myriad of companies to do their dirty work.

    Much easier to conduct financial and industrial espionage on companies to fund your latest terrorist group off the books if you can just control ONE company.

    3) Don't expect management to get any better either. With all of the lawlessness with regards to Anti Trust acts just about being violated everyday, the law has been tossed out the window along with customer service, any possible equipment upgrades.

    Just not going to happen with 1 or two companies around who secretly meet anyway and rigg everything from the stock offerings, to workers salaries...etc.

  • Dead Wrong (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 06, 2014 @10:46AM (#46928651)

    Peering agreements are between two organizations, not between two organizations with a tier-1 between them. Netflix's peering agreement was not through level-1, it was direct between comcast and netflix. Tier-1 providers are the intermediary between non-peering entities, and tier-1 providers peer with those entities.

  • Re:Dead Wrong (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 06, 2014 @11:04AM (#46928875)

    Exactly. @Charliemopps, that is not how the internet works.

    As AC tries to explain:

    Netflix _pays_ Level3 for internet access (Level3 is a tier1 so has connectivity to the whole internet). _Pays_ being the important word here
    You _pay_ your ISP for internet, and they _pay_ a tier1 for access. From the money you pay. No reason to ask Netflix for money.

    The actual situation is more difficult because ISPs and content providers also peer. That is, they connect to each other, and pay each other nothing for the privilege. This makes sense because both parties pay less to their tier1 or transit provider.

  • by Bob9113 (14996) on Tuesday May 06, 2014 @11:26AM (#46929145) Homepage

    Yesterday, the net neutrality petition [] passed the halfway mark, with 18 days left to go. The FCC request for comments [] is still live and looking for your feedback, and Mozilla has an alternative in the offing [].

    Keep the pressure on, keep posting these things on your social networks, keep telling your friends. The only thing less effective than telling the government what we want is not telling them what we want. It is a double edged sword; either they do as we say, or we get one more bit of documentation to support reforming the government.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 06, 2014 @11:27AM (#46929165)

    This isn't about peering in the strict sense of the word. Level 3 is a transit provider, a so-called tier 1 network. [] Colloquially Level 3 is an internet backbone operator. The end-user ISPs don't have global networks and need other networks to pass data through in order to reach the entire internet. These ISPs buy transit from backbone providers, i.e. their peering is not settlement free. For an end-user ISP to unclog their "connection to the internet", they have to buy more bandwidth from the backbone provider, so Level 3's "public service announcement" is a little self-serving. But of course they're right: What's happening is that last-mile providers are selling internet bandwidth that they in turn haven't bought from their upstream providers. If a last-mile ISP has oversold their access to the rest of the internet to the point where there's significant congestion, then it is that last-mile provider's job to buy a bigger pipe (or, if they feel ambitious, build a fast global network and become their own tier 1 network operator).

    There is no need for a fragile real-time settlement protocol. The cost of bandwidth is determined by peak loads, so nothing needs to happen on a timescale smaller than typical demand cycles. Demand for network bandwidth can be planned, and links are not built at a touch of a button. There's nothing to be gained from opening this up to speculators.

  • Re:Details please (Score:4, Informative)

    by fullback (968784) on Tuesday May 06, 2014 @05:25PM (#46933993)

    Her are those details:

    I live in Japan and not in the middle of a city. I'm in a suburban area and have lived in what would be considered almost rural at one time.

    I've had fiber for over 13 years. The only time I've ever had a service interruption was during the major earthquake 3 years ago. Internet came back up within an hour, though. That was the only time I've had a power outage too, in over 22 years of living in Japan.

    I was in several major cities the southeast U.S. - Orlando, Atlanta, Nashville, etc. I needed to ftp data to my servers and it was almost impossible. So slow that I had to give up and wait until I returned home. I was at a friend's house and he lost internet service at least once per week. He had to scream answers for 5 minutes through his phone to a silly automated service before he could talk to a person. He said he has to do it weekly...

    I couldn't get any emails from Asia through his connection. They're all blocked, and those were from the major ISP's in Japan - NTT and Softbank. Blocked! Every foreign web server was like pulling teeth.

    Public WiFi was, well, pathetic.

    It has nothing to do with size of the country. I had faster, more reliable service in the middle of nowhere surrounded by rice paddies in Japan 10 years ago than exists in U.S. urban areas now.

    The reason is that there is competition in Japan. No area franchises. It's a free country.

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