LINX member meetings bring together network operators, public affairs professionals and other industry stakeholders to discuss all aspects of peering as well as Internet regulatory issues. In excess of 150 people have registered to attend the event over the two days – a new LINX record.
LINX has changed beyond all recognition since its early days. Back in November 1994, using a donated piece of equipment no bigger than a digital TV set top box and without any legal contracts, five UK-based Internet service providers linked their networks in order to exchange data and avoid paying astronomical transatlantic bandwidth costs. That moment, 15 years ago, was the birth of the London Internet Exchange, which is now one of the world’s largest Internet exchange points. Today LINX has more than 340 members from the UK, Europe, the USA, the Middle East, Asia-Pacific and Africa.
LINX Chief Executive, John Souter, said: “We look very different topologically than we did in the early years. We have ten points of presence now and we are planning for an eleventh next year. More significantly, we have expanded the geographical span, and I believe we have the widest span – something like 65km – within any of the world’s large Internet exchanges.”
LINX has also been one of the pioneers of successive iterations of the Ethernet standard, from 10Mb to 100Mb to 1G to 10G. LINX was a very early adopter of 10GigE technology with its first switch employed as far back as 2001.The increased demand for 10GigE ports – which now number well in excess of 200 at LINX – is due to the need of LINX members to meet escalating bandwidth requirements following the dramatic growth of the global Internet in recent times.
Mr Souter concluded: “In celebrating our 15th birthday, I would like to pay tribute to the efforts of our members and staff, past and present, to the building and successful operation of LINX. Member support comes through active consultation, healthy debate, and a constant stream of ideas and suggestions, which I am very keen to encourage. Through all this the LINX ethos remains clear and strong: we are a mutual exchange, dedicated to serving our members, both with our peering platforms and in our efforts in the public affairs arena and long may that continue.”