North American Network Operators Group

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Re: ALERT: Sean Donelan cuts fiber

  • From: Sean Donelan
  • Date: Thu May 13 00:24:12 1999

bcoffey@connix.COM (Brendan Coffey) writes:
>Does anyone think it inescapably odd that Sean Donelan _always_
>knows the who, the what, the when, and the where of nearly _every_
>fiber cut in North America (and occasionally beyond) nearly as soon
>as it happens?
>
>I'm thinking maybe he drives a backhoe on the side.

Its unfounded rumors such as that which lead to visits from the men
in dark sunglasses with no sense of humor.  Who are not on the best
terms with me after last weekend anyway.  Hint: It might sound like
a good idea at the time, but do NOT put network equipment inside a
'secure' government building.  If the equipment fails, it is a pain
in the a** to get in on the weekend.

The careful reader will note such a backhoe would have to be capable of
faster than light travel to damage fiber on opposite coasts at virtually
the same time in some cases in the past.   If I had FTL travel, do you
really think I would be wasting my time on this antiquated Internet?  The
only known person with such a device is Kris Kringle.  Due to the enormous
power consumption of the FTL device, he can only use his FTL sled once
a year.  Besides I hear Kringle's non-disclosure agreement has some very
harsh penalities for breach of contract.

Seriously, I learn about most fiber cuts from the following sources:

    - I notice something is down, and its annoying enough I look into it.
    - Reports from the DRA NOC.  DRA may not have an OC-192 network, but
      it only takes one 56Kbps DDS circuit in each right-of-way to notice
      most outages around the country.  I get annoyed when the other 56Kbps
      circuits which weren't supposed to be in the same right-of-way also
      turns red at the same time.  Yes, DRA's NOC has a pretty network map
      which turns red just like those other providers with NOC's which look
      like the bridge of the Starship Enterprise.
    - Reports from DRA customers using other providers.  Every customer
      service rep knows users are the "canaries" of the Internet.
    - Reports from various people on the net who send me e-mail instead
      of posting it themselves.
    - Reports from various news and wire services (AP, CNN, etc).
    - Reports from the provider itself. I usually get the initial report
      from somewhere else, and I will call or check provider's web pages
      for more details.  Also I frequently receive corrections from
      individuals (but never 'official' spokespersons, and therefore prefer
      to remain anonymous) at a provider after I post something egregiously
      wrong.

In any case, you should be learning about these outages from your provider
anyway, not from me.  You should be asking your provider why with their
billion dollar operations, you read about an outage first from someone who
does it only occasionally in his spare time.  Really, this is not my real job.
-- 
Sean Donelan, Data Research Associates, Inc, St. Louis, MO
  Affiliation given for identification not representation