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LINX News

Pete Stevens of Mythic Beasts speaks on network automation

By | LINX News

At the LINX105 member conference on the 30th May Pete Stevens gave a presentation entitled ‘I have pre-emptively replaced you with a very small shell script’.

In this complex, yet informative, topic Pete covered the multiple layers of automation and the code needed to create the config that automated customer deployments as well as Mythic Beast’s own auditing. Pete told us:

“The only way to handle scale is to automate. In recent times LINX has dramatically scaled the number of members, which in turn compels members to automate their operations in order to take full advantage. At Mythic Beasts we’ve been automating operations for a long time and it was great to present to the LINX community an overview of the tools we use and some of the technical details of how.”

Pete has spoken at LINX events on a number of occasions and his technical talks always offer a fascinating insight to the challenges that a network like Mythic Beasts face. You can view the video of his presentation below.

Pete Stevens Biography

After earning a MSci degree in Physics at the University of Cambridge Pete Stevens went on to establish Mythic Beats in the year 2000. The ISP handles anything from little websites like the Cambridge Beer Festival to domain names, right through to larger sites like Raspberry Pi, which has successfully been hosted on a Raspberry Pi cluster despite handling hundreds of millions of daily http requests.

In addition Pete has also acted as an advisor for PurrMetrix Limited and We7 and was a developer at both Hypertag and IDnet. His specialities include IPv6, Raspberry PI, Networking, Load balancing, Apache, Tomcat, Mysql, Postgresql, Java, Perl and Linux.

Further Information

London Colo Market – then, now and the future

By | LINX News

LINX105 presentation by Tim Anker, The Colocation Exchange (Colo-X)

At the LINX105 member conference on the 29th May Tim Anker of Colo-X presented a light-hearted but insightful analysis of the London colocation market over the past 20 years. Tim also looked at today’s key growth areas as well as offering predictions for future developments in the market. Among the questions covered in his talk were:

  • Why has total demand doubled in the past three years year-on-year?
  • Who are the new buyers and what impact is there demand having on the UK data centre market?
  • Who are the latest names and locations to enter the market?

Commenting on his involvement at LINX105 Tim said:

It was great fun to step back and go over what’s taken place these past 20 years. From the “dot-com” boom, when the price of 1Mbs was over £200 per month, to the post boom crash, the inevitable consolidation and then bringing things up to date, the evolution of the London data centre market continues to impress. With new entrants, new locations and some massive new hyperscale developments maintaining London’s position as the leading data centre market in Europe.

In delegate feedback the talk was rated as one of the best of the whole LINX105 meeting. You can view the full presentation below.

Tim Anker Biography

Tim Anker established The Colocation Exchange – or Colo-X as it is now known – in September 2004. Over the last 20 years, Tim has closed deals ranging from from 1U to 50,000 sq ft in locations all over the world, but with a focus on the retail colocation market in the UK. Tim also established a niche colocation business called Crosspoint Colocation which specialises in selling secure 1/4 and 1/2 racks in key London colocation ecosystems such as Telehouse or Equinix. At the end of 2018 Crosspoint became part of Amito Ltd who operate their own 1000 rack Reading data centre. Amito counts at least 40 LINX members as clients and continues to work closely with LINX.

Further Information

LINX publishes 2018 Annual Report at LINX105 member conference in London

By | LINX News

The London Internet Exchange (LINX) officially published its 2018 annual report and accounts at the exchange’s annual general meeting on the 29th May.

The new document features an introduction from LINX Chairman Simon Woodhead, who was separately re-elected to LINX Board during the AGM. Simon had recently taken over as Chair from Murray Steele, who had served as LINX Chair for the previous three years.

“Murray made a strong contribution to LINX, especially by lending his expertise in corporate governance to modernise the Board’s structure and working practices. He helped make the Board much more effective, both as a guardian of the membership’s interests and as a supervisor of the executive team, and we are very thankful for his contribution.”

Simon Woodhead, LINX Chairman

Adding Value and Creating Opportunities

2018 was a landmark year where technical innovation, changes in governance and a focussed marketing strategy combined to enhance LINX’s position as a world leading Internet Exchange Point. On the network side the disaggregated LON2 network infrastructure was introduced with all members migrated seamlessly.

LINX added 141 new 10GE ports and 40 new 100GE ports across all the LINX exchanges during 2018. One of these 100GE ports was the second such port to go live in Manchester, which is very encouraging and a sign of the growth we have seen across all LINX networks.

Also in the report LINX Chief Finance Officer, Malcolm Holt, gave a overview of LINX’s financial position. Despite cuts to the prices of LINX services, LINX managed to maintain its revenue levels and contain expenditure growth and this resulted in the reporting of a small surplus. As a not-for-profit member run organisation this puts LINX position for 2019 and beyond.

In summary LINX Chief Executive Officer, John Souter, reflected on a great 12 months for LINX but also looked ahead to some exciting new projects.

“I would like to say how proud I am of our staff, and the great commitment that they show to serving a membership organisation such as LINX. They have enthusiastically embraced an agile way of working across almost everything that they do, and I see improvement projects underway in almost every aspect of working life at LINX. Long may it continue!”

John Souter, LINX Chief Executive Officer

Download 2018 Annual Report

LINX Announces CEO’s Retirement and Names Successor

By | General, International, LINX News, News

The London Internet Exchange (LINX) announced today that their long-standing CEO, John Souter, has announced his intention to retire at the end of 2019. John has served as LINX CEO for the last 18+ years, whilst the exchange point has grown from around 100 to the 885 ASNs that are connected today.

Current CMO, Kurtis Lindqvist, has been confirmed as his successor. In announcing his impending retirement, John said: “It has been a great privilege to hold this position for so long in such an important part of the UK’s critical national infrastructure. The time has come to pass on the baton to someone new, to lead LINX to even greater success in the future. I would like to thank our members, our staff and Board for their support over the years, and for the great joy of working with them to develop LINX in the way that we have.”

Simon Woodhead, the Chairman of LINX said: “Any CEO wants to leave a business in a better shape than they found it, and any leader’s legacy is the culture and team they have built. John Souter has been tremendously successful in both respects, and has been a constant steady hand at the helm through a period of incredible change. John dedicated himself to LINX and the wider community and on behalf of both I wish to thank him for everything he has done and been. I’m very grateful to have had the opportunity to work with him.” Simon Woodhead announced John’s successor in a statement to LINX members at their LINX105 quarterly member meeting on 29th May 2019: “I am delighted announce that we have appointed Kurt Erik (Kurtis) Lindqvist (the current CMO of LINX) to succeed John as CEO. They will work together in a handover relationship in the coming months, with Kurtis formally taking over in mid-September 2019. John will then step back into a supporting role, prior to his formal retirement from the business at the end of December 2019.”

Kurtis Lindqvist said: "I am very honoured to have been selected as the next CEO for LINX. Under John's leadership, LINX has become recognised as the worlds leading membership Internet Exchange and seen a tremendous growth. John has built a fantastic team at LINX and I look forward to leading LINX and the team, at a time when the interconnection market is changing."

LINX Welcome CNCI as 1st New Member to Connect in London from Japanese IXP Partner, JPIX

By | International, LINX News, News

The London Internet Exchange (LINX) and the Japan Internet Exchange (JPIX) recently entered into a new partnership agreement, a collaboration which stems from the knowledge that an increasing number of Asian networks are looking to peer in Europe, and in London in particular.

Community Network Center (CNCI) is the first member to join LINX in London from JPIX’s Tokyo PoP. CNCI, a large customer for JPIX, is the second-largest cable MSO in Japan, providing internet connectivity to businesses and consumers across central Japan. Reaching Europe from Asia was high on CNCI’s agenda in order to reduce latency and improve speed to European-based gaming content and streaming.

Takanori Furushio, VP-Strategy for JPIX says;

“We are pleased to be able to connect one of our largest customers, CNCI, with our new partners LINX in London. They wanted to be the first network to join LINX through this new partnership and lead the way for other networks to follow.”

CNCI’s port is now live and peering traffic and LINX are looking forward to welcoming more networks from the APAC region to peer in London.

Kurtis Lindqvist, CMO for LINX says;

With transport costs to the UK falling and London maintaining its position as a global hub for interconnection, there’s simply no better time to join LINX. We are pleased to be working alongside our partners in Japan and together ‘working for the good of the Internet.”

Ends

LINX JPIX Partnership

LINX NoVA Celebrate’s 5th Birthday

By | International, LINX News, News

Our regional Internet exchange in Northern Virginia, LINX NoVA is celebrating it’s 5th birthday this week!

Until LINX NoVA launched in 2014, the Ashburn metro area, one of the largest interconnect locations in the world, was a single point of failure. Today our members can enjoy platform diversity as well as a choice of colocation providers in the region, which in turn has improved the Internet in general in the region.

LINX NoVA is located at three sites: Digital Realty in Ashburn, Coresite in Reston and EvoSwitch in Manassas and 5 years ago this week, member traffic started to pass across the exchange!

It’s been quite a year of success for LINX NoVA so far as they welcomed new member network, Charter Communications to the exchange at the start of the year followed by hitting their traffic high in March, peaking at 32.39GB, an increase of over 70% compared to March 2018.

As you can see the future is looking bright for LINX NoVA as it turns 5 years old… Watch this space!

Find out more about LINX NoVA here.

LINX head to Beirut for MENOG19

By | LINX News

MENOG19, the Middle Eastern Network Operators’ Group Meeting, begins on Wednesday 3rd April in Beirut. A total of 285 participants are registered with many having already taken part in a series of pre-conference tutorials.

The London Internet Exchange are proud to be silver sponsors for MENOG19. We are keen to meet with attendees to discuss peering and connecting to LINX plus answer any questions networks have on the recently established regional exchange, JEDIX.

Representing LINX at MENOG19 are Halil Kama and Jeremy Orbell of the LINX Marketing and Business Development team. In this short video blog Jeremy provides a brief insight into LINX’s involvement at this important, and growing, industry event.

For further information on the MENOG meeting and peering forum please visit the MENOG19 event page.

LINX Member take first 100GE port at JEDIX

By | LINX News, News

Saudi Telecom Company (STC) and the London Internet Exchange (LINX) have announced that Limelight has provided a Letter of Intent (loi) that they will take the first 100GE port at JEDIX.

JEDIX, the KSA Internet Exchange powered by LINX, is situated in Jeddah. The agreement, which is subject to finalising a commercial agreement, will also see Limelight deploy its first KSA node in STC’s datacentre MG1 (MENA Gateway) as part of forming a new partnership with STC.

“With the creation of JEDIX we believe this will help increase the flow of internet traffic within the KSA and the surrounding region. Therefore a new CDN PoP will help improve the delivery of Internet content,” said Limelight.

STC and LINX stated that they are very much looking forward to working with Limelight in support of their new node and the betterment of the KSA internet experience.

Photograph courtesy of Capacity Media

Enquiries about connecting at JEDIX are being taken now. To find out more about the exchange click here.

Global Subsea Resurgence: Virginia Beach 0 – 4 in 18 Months

By | International, LINX News, News

Subsea Cables have been growing at an astounding rate of 40% CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate). Last couple of years have seen a major resurgence in the subsea projects globally. These cables are so crucial to the digital economy, that close to $10 Trillion in transactions takes place each day on these cables globally. There are approximately 448 submarine cables in service globally (as of Sep 2018), representing about 1.2 Million kms of trans-oceanic cable deployed under water around the world. The astronomical growth in demand for capacity on these cables is driven by the growth in – data generation by all of us as users, the appetite for data consumption and ‘digital everything’ phenomena taking place around us.

This resurgence in the subsea industry, has led to the formation of many successful new subsea companies, that we like to refer to as the ‘New Age Subsea Companies’ such as – Aqua Comms, Crosslake Fiber, Deep Blue Cable, Indian Ocean Xchange (IOX), Seaborn Networks, South Atlantic Express (SAEx) to name a few. There are multiple subsea projects underway by these companies in various stages of development spanning the globe and connecting various continents together.

The content providers and over-the-top (OTT) companies have also been investing significantly in the subsea cable systems. The number of cable systems that content providers and OTTs have invested in are – Amazon (3), Facebook (10), Google (14), Microsoft (4). This represents a major paradigm shift in the industry wherein earlier a large number of [international] consortiums (at times 15-20 companies) were formed to fund and implement a subsea cable system. Compare that to the present time, when you have much smaller consortiums (typically 2-3 companies), and at times one single company owning, funding and operating the entire system end-to-end. It costs anywhere from $300-$500M to design and build one subsea cable system. Various complex steps are involved in the lifecycle including – marine survey, desktop study, feasibility analysis, permitting, licensing and various other international legal matters. The lifespan of a subsea cable is ~25 years. Several subsea systems across the Atlantic are nearing their EOL, and this coupled with the exploding demand for capacity together have been the macro driving forces behind the resurgence taking place around us in the subsea industry.

The Virginia Beach Success Story
Virginia Beach has experienced unprecedented success in attracting new subsea fiber cable landings on its shores. In the last ~18-20 months or so the City of Virginia Beach has gone from having 0 subsea cables to 4. These 4 subsea cables are in various stages of development as we speak and will provide a direct and fast connection to different countries and continents of the world. This is a significant development for the state of Virginia, which is the #1 data center market in the world and has ~70% of the world’s Internet traffic passing through the state.

These subsea fiber cables that connect Virginia shoreline to various parts of the world, are extremely crucial to the digital economy and our ever-so-digital lives. By virtue of these cables spanning thousands of kilometers across the Atlantic Ocean, the State of Virginia will have direct, low-latency and high-capacity connectivity to various parts of the world including:

  1. Bilbao, Spain                         MAREA             8 fiber pairs      6600 kms          Operational
  2. Rio De Janeiro, Brazil            BRUSA             6 fiber pairs      4000 kms          Operational
    (with BUs to Puerto Rico, San Juan & Fortaleza, Brazil)
  3. Cape Town, South Africa        SAEx1              6 fiber pairs      13,300 kms       Development
    (with BUs to Fortaleza, Brazil, Ascension, St. Helena)Singapore (from Cape Town)      SAEx2           6 fiber pairs      11,800 kms       Development
    (with BUs to Mtunzini, South Africa, Madagascar, Mauritius, Chennai, India)
  4. French Atlantic Coast, France DUNANT           4 fiber pairs      5000 kms          Development

MAREA is co-owned by Microsoft, Facebook and Telxius, and BRUSA is fully owned by Telxius. These two cables are operational and land at Telxius CLS in Virginia Beach. The SAEx system, comprises of two segments SAEx1 and SAEx2. SAEx1 or South Atlantic Express1 will connect from Virginia Beach to Cape Town, South Africa with Branching Units to Fortaleza, Brazil, Ascension and Saint Helena. SAEx2 or South Asia Express2 will head eastward from Cape Town, South Africa to Singapore with Branching Units to Mtunzini, South Africa, Madagascar, Mauritius and Chennai, India. In essence, SAEx (comprising of SAEx1 and SAEx2) will provide a diverse new route connecting four continents together – North America, South America, Africa and Asia. The system will avoid existing choke points, avoid seismic hazards and ultimately reduce the latency between Asia and Americas and between Asia and Africa.  The fourth system announced in DUNANT, which is owned by Google, and will be connecting to the French Atlantic Coast with a partnership with Orange.

The two operational cables – MAREA and BRUSA, both land at Camp Pendelton, a US military reserve facility in Virginia Beach. The City of Virginia Beach along with the Virginia Beach Development Authority (VBDA) is evaluating a second alternative and diverse landing point for subsea cables at Sandbridge Beach. These cables when fully built and operational, will collectively be interconnecting four continents – North America, South America, Africa and Europe – thereby making Virginia Beach at the Confluence of four Continents. Additionally, there are a few other subsea projects that are under various stages of consideration in the subsea industry to land in Virginia Beach.

The City of Virginia Beach has been proactively and diligently working with the industry to make it easy, cost-effective and faster to bring new subsea cables to the port city also now known as the “Digital Port”. Some key initiatives underway by the City of Virginia Beach include –

  • Reducing the tax rate for data center equipment to $0.40 per $100 of assessed value with a depreciation schedule of 40 percent of original cost for the first three years. The depreciation rate for year four is 30 percent and for year five and forward is 15 percent
  • Streamlining the permitting process for cable landings
  • Pursuing establishment of cable protection zones
  • Identifying alternative landing point at Sandbridge to Corporate Landing
  • Improving city’s conduit infrastructure in Corporate Landing
  • Available Dominion Energy-certified data center sites – Owned by the City of Virginia Beach Development Authority, Corporate Landing Business Park consists of 325 acres of land, of which 160 acres are “shovel ready” and available for development

Summary

The Subsea cables provide the vital backbone of the global Digital Economy. Global Subsea Resurgence will continue for at least the next 3-5 years. Diverse landing points and new business models will continue to take the center stage in this growth driving additional bandwidth capacity under the oceans. The subsea industry will be working more and more closer with the terrestrial fiber industry and the data center industry thus enabling the natural convergence of subsea fiber, terrestrial fiber and data centers.

Vinay Nagpal, President of InterGlobix joined us at LINX102, watch his presentation in full here;

Thanks to our guest authors:

Vinay Nagpal

President, InterGlobix

vinay@interglobix.com

Rob Hudome

Senior Project Development Mgr., City of Virginia Beach

rhudome@vbgov.com

Internet Exchange Operators LINX and STC Establish Strategic Partnership

By | LINX News

London Internet Exchange (LINX) and Saudi Telecom Company (STC), on December 7th 2018 marked the start of JEDIX powered by LINX, an Internet exchange in Jeddah (JEDIX), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA).

John Souter, CEO of LINX, said: “JEDIX powered by LINX is a real step forward for the Internet community in Saudi and the GCC as a whole. The exchange will allow networks to stop ‘tromboning’ traffic to London and back again, and will help increase resilience by creating a new centre for interconnection in the KSA.”

Kurt Erik Lindqvist, CMO of LINX announced, “The new partnership between LINX and STC forms an exciting milestone in the expansion of LINX global presence and builds on LINX’s aim of ‘Working for the Good of the Internet’ globally.

LINX, one of the world’s largest Internet Exchanges, based in London, UK, has provided the expertise and will support the operation of JEDIX powered by LINX going forward. JEDIX is a neutral Internet traffic exchange platform that interconnects global networks and, above all, network operators and content providers in the GCC region. The JEDIX is built on a fully redundant switching platform located in a neutral secure STC data center in Jeddah.

Alan Whelan, VP of STC Wholesale, commented – “STC’s ambition is to develop JEDIX into the leading internet and data hub in the MENA region. In LINX we have a global leading IX partner who will help accelerate the delivery of this ambition and create a thriving interconnection eco system in the Kingdom”

STC, Saudi’s incumbent operator and the largest operator in the MENA region, is pleased to announce its new partnership with LINX, as part of its initiative to deliver on its mandate to establish Saudi Arabia as the key Hub for telecoms connectivity, in the MENA region, as part of the Saudi Vision 2030.