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Re: Level 3's side of the story
This is my bet. Let's see. Peering went down October 6th. Then a fedexed letter with nasty threats arrives today [with a fax copy arriving on the 6th]. Then a letter from Level3 fedexed back on the 7th for delivery on the 9th saying "We've cured the default and here is 30 days notice that we are terminating your account or changing your service."
Then 30 days from the 10th to November 9th...
Yup. Sounds about right.
Dave (I'm merging your comment in here too):
One question [referring to customers being used as pawns] -- what does ANY network have besides their customers to use in a peering negotiation?
Engineers often try to use things like prefix counts, # of routers, # of countries, blah blah blah but really these are all oblique references to the size and import of the single homed customers behind that network. Level3 thought their customers were more desirable than Cogent's. Level3's customers seem to have enough respect for Cogent's customers to make Level3 blink. I seem to remember the same thing happening with [another network] trying to depeer Cogent a few months back.
What I find interesting is that in this case, Cogent apparently allowed the sessions (whichever ones Level3 decided to fire back up) to come up cleanly. I think in that earlier instance Cogent kept the peering sessions down until some point [one speculates until the legal paperwork came through] -- notice I said "I think" I have no specific facts, just a vague recollection.
Taking this back to pricing (I suddenly found about 30 minutes I didn't expect to have), if Cogent terminated their most recent $6/mb/s or $8/mb/s promotion because of this concern with the Level3 peering and Level3 does indeed blink [comes back to the table and agrees to an indefinite term of SFI] Cogent might re-establish the promotion and with it grow by another 20 or 30 Gb/s or more.. possibly at the direct expense of Level3 and others and force more growth of their interconnections.
Another question (wow, 3 or 4 separate threads in one email). Instead of a "hard" de-peering. Wouldn't it be more effective if Level3 just stopped adding interconnection capacity to Cogent? That is an effective way of limiting the growth of losses between two networks, and if some discreet situation can be used [say a balanced traffic ratio] no new capacity will be added until that situation is resolved? Cogent [in this case] could solve the problem by adding the appropriate # and type of customers or by buying transit to add capacity [and possibly forfeiting SFI]. Then instead of using your peering partner's customers as pawns, you are using your own to drive the business case either way.
That is a much "nicer" way to put pressure on a peer without it getting blasted all over the headlines... Especially if you are the network doing the depeering. And if your customer contracts don't cover (SLA-wise) interconnections, you don't care either way.
Just a few ideas...