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LINX News

CEO Retires on a High as 25 Years of the London Internet Exchange is Celebrated

By | LINX News, News

LINX CEO Emeritus, John Souter as he took the stage during the LINX107 member conference to present on the history of LINX.

The London Internet Exchange, known as LINX, celebrated its 25th anniversary in style in front of a record 300 members, partners and special guests at its quarterly member conference in London this November.

LINX was established in November 1994 using a donated piece of equipment no bigger than a digital TV set top box and without any legal contracts, with the goal of keeping traffic local and avoiding costly transatlantic fees.

The five founding members of LINX were PIPEX, BT Internet Services, Demon Internet Services, EUnet GB and UKERNA/JANET and on the 8th November that year the first traffic was passed from network to network at the Telehouse campus in the Docklands area of London.

The LINX107 member conference in London was held on 11th & 12th November 2019 marked this milestone in UK Internet history. Over 20 global Internet exchanges (IXPs) were in attendance to celebrate LINX’s anniversary, but also to pass on their good wishes to John Souter, LINX CEO for the past 19 years, who will be retiring at the end of the year.

Mr Souter took the stage during the LINX107 event to present on the history of the Internet from his perspective during his time at the helm of LINX. The very first member conference he attended was LINX33 in Paris in 2001 and was present at 74 of the 75 events that followed missing just one due to illness. Even then he was able to follow the proceedings via webcast!

“We have seen some remarkable changes in the way the telecoms industry has operated over the years but to see that our neutral not-for-profit model remaining the preferred approach for peering is extremely satisfying. Our ethos of working for the good of the Internet has never been stronger and to have so many other IXPs join us for our celebrations at LINX107 was remarkable. It clearly demonstrates what a strong and collaborative industry we work in and long may that continue.”

LINX remains the largest membership owned Internet exchange in the World with networks connecting over 800 members from 80 countries. In fact, on the 25th anniversary itself the 900th network ASN was connected to the exchange, IP Integration (IPI), another milestone reached. Commenting on his appointment as LINX CEO Kurt-Erik Lindqvist said:

 “These are exciting times for LINX and I am extremely proud to be taking on this position at this time. John will be a hard act to follow but he leaves us with the exchange in extremely good shape. I’m really looking forward to leading LINX in the next stage of its development.”

LINX Announce Significant New Year Price Cuts Plus New Incentive Programme to Encourage Growth in Bandwidth

By | LINX News, News
LINX CEO Kurtis Lindqvist and CFO Malcolm Holt at LINX107

LINX CEO Kurtis Lindqvist and CFO Malcolm Holt at the LINX107 member conference at the Park Plaza Victoria in London.

LINX, the London Internet Exchange, have committed to reducing the cost of 10GE and 100GE port fees by 15% on its LON1 and LON2 networks in London, with further reductions at its regional exchanges, LINX Manchester and LINX NoVA.

In addition a new incentive scheme is being introduced which will offer members 6 months free on 1GE to 10GE port upgrades as well as new 100GE ports for orders received during the first half of 2020. The new pricing structure and incentive scheme proposals were ratified by a vote by LINX membership at an Extraordinary General Meeting in London on the 12th November 2019.

Price Reductions

As of 1st January 2020 prices on LON1 10GE fees will drop to £542 per month with 100GE ports priced at only £3056 over the same period. Meanwhile, the LON2 platform has new monthly fees of £306 for 10GE and £1935 for the 100GE port option. Corresponding ports at LINX Manchester will be reduced to £230 and £1148 respectively.

The LINX NoVA exchange in Northern Virginia, USA, will see reductions of 10% on its 10GE and 100GE ports. Prices at LINX Scotland, LINX Cardiff and Saudi exchange JEDIX will all remain unchanged.

Incentive Programme

LINX are also to introduce an incentive scheme designed to encourage growth of bandwidth across the membership. The programme is available on all LINX LANs (excluding JEDIX), and covers the following options:

  • Upgrades from one or more 1GE ports to one or more 10GE ports
  • Purchase of additional 100GE ports

If a member places an order for either option between 1st January 2020 and 30th June 2020, and also commits to a 12 month minimum contract term, the member will receive the first six months free of the contract term, and subsequently pay normal port fees for the remaining six months.

LINX CEO, Kurtis Lindqvist, said:

Growth of traffic at the exchange benefits all members as this drives down unit costs but more importantly, it delivers more value to the members over their connected infrastructure. The incentive programme is designed to work for all members, whatever their size. For smaller members it offers a low-cost path to upgrade from 1GE ports but also provides an incentive for the largest members of LINX to keep growing at the exchange.

Lindqvist added:

LINX’s business model relies on a virtuous cycle where growth in demand for our services creates economies of scale that enable us to return value through reduced prices, enabling continuing growth. The new incentive scheme for additional ports is intended to further reinforce this virtuous cycle.

LINX’s current pricing structure and further details of the incentive programme can be viewed on the LINX website.

LINX Prepare to Welcome TeleData as 4th LINX Manchester PoP

By | LINX News, Manchester, News

The London Internet Exchange (LINX) are pleased to announce they will be launching a 4th site at their regional Internet exchange in Manchester.

Launched in 2012, LINX Manchester has gone from strength to strength attracting a productive mix of content and access networks on a local, national and international scale, who value the approach of ‘keeping traffic local’. The exchange boasts over 140 connected member ports, peak traffic of over 100Gbps and greater than the coveted 99.999 % for reliability.

Currently located in 3 data centre facilities, LINX Manchester is taking the leap and extending its footprint to a 4th point of presence (PoP) as they plan to welcome long standing LINX member and reseller partner TeleData to the platform.

Jo Fereday, Product Manager at LINX says:

“LINX were aware of the need to increase the choice of data centre partners in Manchester. Teledata are a great partner for LINX, they are long standing members, have a clear understanding of peering and are true supporters of the LINX Manchester Exchange. We are pleased to be able to make Teledata a LINX PoP.”

Multi-site deployment is key for a successful Internet exchange and LINX try to adopt this neutral approach across their whole network. It offers members choice of not only location but of carrier partners too, and also increases redundancy and resilience which remain as primary factors for any network looking to peer.

Commercial Director Matthew Edgley says:

“We are thrilled that LINX Manchester has selected us as their 4th Manchester PoP. It marks a real quality stamp for us as a carrier neutral data centre operator and is great news for our network intensive customer base, who will benefit significantly from peering on the LINX Manchester exchange directly from our site.”

“We plan to make it as cost effective and simple as possible to become a member and join the exchange, by offering free of charge cross connects and discounted rack space for connected members.  We hope to play a key role in the future growth of the LINX exchange and help to develop Manchester’s connectivity capabilities even further.”

TeleData have had significant growth in 2019 including the recent launch of their cloud platform, CloudActiv and joining LINX Manchester’s physical network is another great achievement and will offer current and future customers fast and simple access to peering at the IX.

LINX Go LIVE with IX API

By | Europe, General, International, LINX News, News, Uncategorised

LINX Go LIVE with New Universal IX API

Following the announcement, presentation and live demonstration during the key networking event EPF14 last week in Tallinn, the London Internet Exchange (LINX) are pleased to  now share with the industry that the LINX API service is now live.

Richard Petrie, Chief Technology Officer for LINX says;

“With the IX-API initiative we welcome all IXs and partners to invest in the adoption of which we aspire will be an industry standard implementation in accessing IX peering services digitally.”

“With this being the first phase, I’m excited to see us continue to develop application level peering automation and other interconnection services for LINX, our member and partners, all to improve the membership experience, peering quality and the interconnection ecosystem as a whole.”

LINX members and partners are now invited to test the new IX API service directly by following the steps on the web site, ix-api.net. New networks looking to join the exchange and start peering services can now connect to LINX through either of the pilot partners, Epsilon and Interxion.

Read more about the project and the working partners here.

IX-API For the Good of the Internet

By | Europe, General, International, LINX News, News

Global Internet Exchange Leaders Develop Universal API

Today at EPF (European Peering Forum) taking place in Tallinn, Estonia, it was announced that the world’s leading Internet Exchange operators AMS-IX (Amsterdam), DE-CIX (Frankfurt) and LINX (London) have joined forces to develop a common Application Programming Interface (API) to provision and configure interconnection services. This so-called IX-API will improve productivity for their members, customers and partners alike. It allows users to self-manage their existing and new interconnection services such as peering more effectively, from ordering new ports to monitoring provisioning processes.

The consortium of the three Internet Exchanges also called on common member and connectivity partner Epsilon and data centre partner Interxion to act as pilot customers for the new software. Both partners’ tests came out with positive results and they will be joining the exchanges at the European Peering Forum (EPF) to present and demonstrate the tool to the rest of the Internet and telecommunications community.

Richard Petrie, Chief Technology Officer for LINX adds;
“Our software and engineering teams have collaborated, working hard to create this modern RESTful API based on OpenAPI Specification v3 for managing IXPs customers and services.”

Dr Thomas King, Chief Technology Officer at DE-CIX says;
“DE-CIX ambition has always been to make customers life easier and connect them anywhere needed on the planet. Therefore, we are pleased to have come together with our partners to create this IX-API from scratch. We are convinced that this new industry standard will be adopted by other Internet Exchanges and interconnection providers.”

Henk Steenman, Chief Technology Officer for AMS-IX says;
“At AMS-IX, we are very proud that the three largest exchanges join forces, collaborate and have reached consensus to deliver the common IX-API project. In a very competitive market, we have found a common ambition and drive for the greater good of the internet.”

There is a large percentage of member and customer crossover between all three exchanges, working with the same remote peering partners and data centres. Being able to work with and offer out to the community, a universal API tool is a huge step forward for the industry. Find out more about the IX-API collaboration project here: www.ix-api.net

Photograph to the left shows from left to right: Henk Steenman, CTO AMS-IX, Thomas King, CTO DE-CIX, Richard Petrie, CTO LINX as they prepare for their presentation at the European Peering Forum.

Photograph above shows the IX teams being joined by members of the team from Epsilon and Interxion as they conduct their live demonstrations of the tool at EPF14 in Tallinn on 17th September.

LINX to Recruit New Chair for its Executive Board

By | LINX News, News

The London Internet Exchange (LINX) are actively recruiting a replacement non-executive Chairperson for its Board of Directors.

LINX is the largest, solely member-run Internet exchange in the World, with over 880 network ASNs currently connected to one or more of their seven global interconnection points. Being a non- profit member owned organisation, the LINX Board plays a pivotal part in the running of the exchange, so finding the right candidate is crucial.

 

We are seeking a candidate that shows a good understanding of our industry sector and the role LINX plays in the ecosystem.

John Souter, LINX CEO

LINX is the largest, solely member-run Internet exchange in the World, with over 880 network ASNs currently connected to one or more of their seven global interconnection points. Being a non- profit member owned organisation, the LINX Board plays a pivotal part in the running of the exchange, so finding the right candidate is crucial.

The primary service LINX offers is to facilitate the passing of data, or Internet traffic, from network to network on a large scale over a secure, resilient platform. This process is called ‘peering’ and with the huge growth in data and Internet resilience set to multiply incredibly over the next few years, it’s an exciting opportunity for a new Chair to join the Board.

The Chair is expected to champion the vision, mission and core values of LINX both within the Board and when speaking on behalf of the Board. This includes ensuring that their strategy and key Board decisions are made with these fundamentals in mind.

LINX’s vision is to provide an open community of network operators interconnecting to maintain an “Internet for Everyone” all without interference. The mission of LINX is to provide world-leading Internet Exchange Points that provide increasing performance and value for its members. It also aims to represent their interests in matters of public policy.

The LINX Board, as it stands, has a varied wealth of experience within the Telecommunications and Technology industry including three internal LINX senior members of staff and representatives from high profile organisations Google, Facebook and BT, who are all active LINX members too. Meet the current Board and explore more information on the role here; https://www.linx.net/about/meettheteam-theboard/

LINX are working with specialist recruitment consultants, Expand, to explore a broad recruitment pool thus to ensure the right candidate is found.

Telehouse’s commitment to the connected community

By | LINX News

Telehouse’s Mark Pestridge, Sales Director, and Nick Layzell, Head of Managed Services (centre and left) speaking with LINX’s Jeremy Orbell at LINX105.

Telehouse Europe were platinum sponsors at LINX105 at the Park Plaza Victoria in May 2019. During their presentation, Mark Pestridge and Nick Layzell explained how its connected community will continue to drive its future plans in the face of ever changing business requirements. Mark had this to say about speaking at the event:

“As a partner of LINX for some 25 years and as a Platinum Sponsor for LINX 105, we were very pleased to be able take up the opportunity to provide an update on how the world at Telehouse is evolving. We thought it was very important to emphasize to the audience how we will continue to invest in and enhance our Docklands Campus.”

“Our parent company KDDI is committed providing our existing and future customers will with the flexibility and agility to grow as their business requires within the Campus. We also thought it important to talk through what we are seeing in terms of the changing demand for take up in the data centre world; specifically around Enterprise demand for hybrid cloud services and also new technology developments such as IOT and 5G. Following our presentation, it was really good to be able to be able to discuss some of the topics we raised in more detail during the networking sessions.”

You can view the full presentation video of Mark and Nick’s talk below.

After the presentation LINX’s Jeremy Orbell caught up with Mark and Nick to discuss the talk and the reaction of LINX105 attendees. You can view the short video interview on the LINX YouTube channel via the link below.

LINX105 Catch Up: Mark Pestridge & Nick Layzell

Extracting economic and social insights from Internet traffic data

By | LINX News

Lead Data Scientist at the Office for National Statistics (ONS), gave a talk at LINX105 in May on a research project that’s exploring how different data sources can help gain insights into the data driven Internet economy.

Using data from the LINX traffic flow portal (https://portal.linx.net/) as a proxy/small window view of overall Internet traffic volume ONS have investigated the following:

  1. The potential to use traffic flow data to identify and measure Internet time-use
  2. Anomaly detection and traffic impact of large-scale events
  3. Relationship between traffic flow and various economic indicators

Philip commented:

“As part of our ongoing research in the newly formed Data Science Campus, part of the Office for National Statistics, we are currently exploring the wider theme of deriving social/economic indicators from alternative and novel data sources for potential use in new and experimental statistical outputs. One such project to emerge from this exciting research area aims to explore if it is possible to extract social and economic insights from real time internet traffic volume data. This talk summarises some insights discovered from data obtained from the LINX status monitoring portal which may be of interest to LINX members.”

The video of Philip’s talk can viewed in full below which led to much debate amongst those present at the event.

Philip Stubbings Biography

Philip Stubbings joined the ONS Data Science Campus in November 2016. He has since been applying computer vision and machine learning to image segmentation problems.

Prior to joining the campus, he had worked as a research software engineer in a number of areas including crop health monitoring, algorithmic trading, photometry, numerical control, optimisation and OR. He holds a BSc in Artificial Intelligence and MSc in Computer Science from the University of Essex.

Further Information

LINX Upgrades Equipment at VIRTUS LONDON2 to Enable Growth & 100G Connections

By | Digital Britain, Europe, General, LINX News, News

Due to increased member and capacity demands, the London Internet Exchange are pleased to announce considerable port upgrades to their VIRTUS Data Centre peering location.

 

VIRTUS’ LONDON2 facility in Hayes joined LINX back in 2014 as an accessible (virtual) data centre facility, being upgraded then in 2016 to a ConneXions Access Point following member demand and LINX infrastructure being installed. A LINX ConneXions Access Point is based at a neutral data centre giving customers direct access to LINX infrastructure from within the data centre, thus improving performance of its peering connectivity.

Photograph features LINX Head of Sales, Jennifer Holmes
with
Kelly Scott, VIRTUS Account Director (Education)

Darren Watkins, Managing Director from VIRTUS Data Centres is pleased with the partnership and new upgrade:

Connectivity is key to the success of data centres and we are delighted that LINX has increased its capability for our customers at LONDON2. This industry critical peering service compliments our Cloud Connect services making LONDON2 a key hub for technology.

VIRTUS customers who become LINX members will also benefit from improved latency and resilience as well as transit performance and routing control. Increased capacity and redundancy at a lower cost are also key benefits to joining an Internet exchange such as LINX. The customers have the opportunity to peer with over 880 LINX member networks from over 80 countries worldwide across the dual LAN infrastructure in London, LON1 (Juniper) and LON2 (Edgecore Networks & IP Infusion).

LINX Head of Sales Jennifer Holmes says:

“We’re extremely pleased with the level of interest from new and existing members in connecting at the Virtus Hayes site. Our recent upgrade of equipment at this location allows networks to not only connect to our peering fabric in London but also gives them the option of larger port sizes and increased capacity – this is sure to encourage even more growth in the future.”

Zen’s Richard Tang on the future of Artificial Intelligence

By | LINX News

Richard Tang of Zen Internet recently gave a presentation at the LINX105 member conference on artificial intelligence, specifically focussing on when AI is likely to become super-intelligent.

In an industry where the pace of change is so great making predictions on this potentially globally life-changing subject isn’t easy but Richard takes an approach that covers human values as well technical enhancements. Richard told us:

“I very much enjoyed presenting my thoughts on the development of AI over the coming decades, and in particular the prospect of AI becoming super-intelligent. If my predictions are correct, then the changes we have ahead are much bigger than most people realise. There were some great questions and comments from the audience. I even accepted a bet from one member of the audience on what date AI would be clever enough to get rid of 100% of spam!”

You can view the video of Richard’s presentation on artificial intelligence below.

Richard previously spoke at LINX103 in November covering the development of the Internet since Zen’s inception in the mid-90s. An interesting aspect to that talk was the importance of staff when looking to grow a company.

“With Zen being privately owned I can simply decide I’m not going to take the usual approach. In a business sense we of course have sales targets but it’s not the be all and end all for us. What we want is happy staff, happy customers, and strong supplier relationships. Some say why would you put staff before customers but to me it’s clear that if you’re going to give an outstanding customer experience you have to start with your people.”

Further Information