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Re: PTTs and IP service providers

  • To: Hank Nussbacher < >
  • From: Steve Goldstein--Ph +1-202-357-9717 < >
  • Date: Tue, 15 Sep 92 07:46:33 EDT
  • Cc:

  >I would like to hear from people who have experience with a PTT that

Though we may have some "wannabe-PTTs" here, there is open competition
in the US, and we have haved reaped the benefits of that competition over
and over again.  So, the answers that follow may not really be appropriate
to the questions directed at PTTs.

  >provides some sort of IP service as a joint venture with academia or
  >as a new service with no ties to academia.  Questions I have are:
  >- Does the PTT provide for a POP (Point of Presence) model within their
  >  telephone exchange buildings?

Following open competition, NSF awarded a Cooperative Agreement to Sprint
for International Connections Management services for NSFNET, commencing
January, 1991.  Initial POP in the U.S. was in Cornell University, but
since then, Sprint has moved POP to its facility in Washington, D.C.  Also,
another, to its POP in Stockton, California.  

For the record, other telco providers also offer POP location of routers and
other IP networking equipment.  In fact, it has become more the norm than the
exception lately in the U.S. Both mid-level networks (e.g., the former NSFNET
"regionals") and nationwide private service providers (the "commercials")
have routers located in telco POPs.

  >- If yes, how much does the PTT charge for the POP service? Rent? Facilities
  >  management?

Sprint and NSF have negotiated a management fee, by the port, for each
country's connection it manages.  

  >- Does your network have the PTT providing just the fiber infrastructure for
  >  the IP network (levels 1 & 2 in the ISO model) or do they also provide
  >  all management services including routing table management, IP address
  >  allocation, etc.?  If they do not provide the management of the upper
  >  layers, who does?

Sprint provides services through Level 3.

  >- How much new manpower was required by your PTT to provide an IP service?

Started small, but when they saw the opportunity and got the experience with
ICM project **they decided to launch their own unrestricted (non-AUP-limited)
service, SprintLink** and then added staff which are shared between the
services.  I do not know if any were previous X.25 operators.

By the way, our agreement with Sprint calls for services and not links.
This has permitted Sprint to share links with other service providers
in offering us services.  One example is the NORDUnet-NSFNET/SWIPnet-Alternet
shared link.  No multiplexers, by the way.  

  >  Where they able to retrain X.25 network operators to be competent IP
  >  network operators?
  >- In addition to NOC (Network Operations Center) services, who provides
  >  NIS (Network Information Services)?  The PTT?  The consortium?  An outside
  >  contractor?

Network Information Services for NSFNET are provided by other organization(s)
and are currently in the process of new award.

  >- How are shares divided between consortium owners and the PTT?

  >...Anything else
  >you might be able to add to this topic would be greatly appreciated.

Sprint has performed admirably for us.  One of the first things they had to
learn was the spirit of competition-within-cooperation which characterizes
the Internet community.  This is indeed a different culture, and you have only
to look at the potential competitors within RIPE to see how the cooperation
can work to everybody's benefit.  IN FACT, THE INTERNET, AS WE NOW KNOW IT,

Also, I think that Sprint would be the first ones to acknowledge the tremendous
amount of assistance that they received from our European colleagues in
setting up operations for ICM and in re-configuring the service (e.g., the
move to Washington POP, coexistence with SprintLink).  Yes, our *European*
colleagues in RIPE and Ebone and NORDUnet!  There is a deep well of practical
and theoretical knowledge and experience in European IP networking, and Sprint
has been wise enough to accept the technical assistance when offered. Sprint
acknowledges that their experience with the ICM task and the launch of 
SprintLink contributed to their winning the DoE/NASA award for an advanced
mission network service in the U.S.  There might be some lessons in here...

  >Hank Nussbacher

Steve G.

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