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  1. #1

    Question Looking for Tier 1 carrier-grade dedicated hosting without Tier 1 carrier price

    All,

    I have been looking around at hosting services directly from tier 1 providers (i.e. AT&T, Verizon, etc) but the cost is not a good value plus you typically have to lock in for 3 years to get any type of meaningful discount.

    Does anyone know of a hosting company that offers dedicated servers directly with a Tier 1 provider such as AT&T, XO, Verizon, Level 3, etc but doesn't have to have the extra hop between the Tier 1 carrier and the hosted server? In the ideal situation, the BGP AS path would show the dedicated server being hosted by Tier 1 provider instead of a smaller, Tier 2/3 downstream data center even though the server is actually hosted with a hosting company other than the Tier 1 provider supporting a good value hosting plan without requiring a 3 year contract.

    Any and all suggestions are welcome.

    Thanks in advance,
    bsmrent

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsmrent View Post
    All,
    In the ideal situation, the BGP AS path would show the dedicated server being hosted by Tier 1 provider instead of a smaller, Tier 2/3 downstream data center
    You're mixing the concept of carrier "tiers" and data center "tiers".

    What exactly are you trying to accomplish? Being single homed in a hosting environment is generally not a good thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Microlinux View Post
    You're mixing the concept of carrier "tiers" and data center "tiers".

    What exactly are you trying to accomplish? Being single homed in a hosting environment is generally not a good thing.
    How do you figure that?

    AT&T, Verizon, etc would be considered Tier-1

    Nlayer, HE.net would be considered Tier-2

    Hosting-Provider would be Tier-3

    as far as networks are concerned
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ionity View Post
    How do you figure that?

    AT&T, Verizon, etc would be considered Tier-1

    Nlayer, HE.net would be considered Tier-2

    Hosting-Provider would be Tier-3

    as far as networks are concerned
    Well, yes.

    I assume you are referring to my comment about mixing network and data center tiers, I simply meant that the definition of 'tiers' in the context of data centers and carrier networks is different.

  5. #5
    @Ionity - You have the right idea in mind with the ISP tiers.

    @Microlinux - I agree that being multi-homed is usually the goal, but in this case I would like to maintain the shortest AS path possible so if I were to host directly at Tier 1 provider (ex: Level3, AS3356), my AS path from webhostingtalk.com could simply be 32244 3356 and that is it. Two hops from current ASN to Level3. And if webhostingtalk.com was also a Level3 customer/ASN, it would be a single, "in-network" route (AS3356 only).

    The only problem is that tier 1 providers typically charge an arm and leg to host with them, thus I am looking for alternative while still being able to maintain minimal AS path. Even if I am potentially giving up any benefits of being multi-homed. Although in my experience, most tier 1 providers have diverse fiber paths (ex: East/West building entry) and full redundancy up to the handoff to the collocated/hosted gear so the risk of single point of failure is mitigated to a large extent although I also recognize traffic can still be affected by a large upstream network outage (DDoS or routing problem affecting the network at large).

    Not really sure if any hosting companies are out there that can provide this or if I am looking for something that doesn't exist.

    bsmrent

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsmrent View Post
    @Ionity - You have the right idea in mind with the ISP tiers.

    @Microlinux - I agree that being multi-homed is usually the goal, but in this case I would like to maintain the shortest AS path possible so if I were to host directly at Tier 1 provider (ex: Level3, AS3356), my AS path from webhostingtalk.com could simply be 32244 3356 and that is it. Two hops from current ASN to Level3. And if webhostingtalk.com was also a Level3 customer/ASN, it would be a single, "in-network" route (AS3356 only).

    The only problem is that tier 1 providers typically charge an arm and leg to host with them, thus I am looking for alternative while still being able to maintain minimal AS path. Even if I am potentially giving up any benefits of being multi-homed. Although in my experience, most tier 1 providers have diverse fiber paths (ex: East/West building entry) and full redundancy up to the handoff to the collocated/hosted gear so the risk of single point of failure is mitigated to a large extent although I also recognize traffic can still be affected by a large upstream network outage (DDoS or routing problem affecting the network at large).

    Not really sure if any hosting companies are out there that can provide this or if I am looking for something that doesn't exist.

    bsmrent
    1) Why do you need the shortest AS path? Why do you see benefit in this?

    2) A Tier-1, Tier-2, etc could have diverse fiber entrances. That doesn't protect against attacks against that network, human error, or other failure domains. You are still best to have at least two providers. In many cases the Tier-1 isn't going to build a Layer3 POP at every Datacenter so you will have some sort of EPL back to their Layer3 POP. That said, you might then be charged a premium for a protected EPL pathway. (Just depends on how they build your service).
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    Verio Hosting (verio.com) is owned by Tier 1 provider NTT.
    Last edited by mainpipe; 11-04-2013 at 06:53 PM.

  8. #8

    Question

    @mainpipe - Perfect! That is exactly what I am looking for.

    @Ionity - I agree and understand about risk of human error and other possible failures, but human error can fault a multi-homed network as readily as a single-homed network if the error is made anywhere between the multi-homed router(s) and the hosted server.

    Verio is a perfect example of what I am looking for. Does anyone know of any other companies beside Verio that work like this? This way I could provide services with shortest path for other users which are not on NTT (i.e. if they are on Level 3, AT&T, Verizon, Qwest, etc.).

    Plus, to Ionity's point, it would be good to have service from multiple providers not to put all my eggs in one basket (i.e. Verio and <some other company>).

    bsmrent
    Last edited by bsmrent; 11-04-2013 at 07:39 PM. Reason: make question more clear.

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    These type of setups exist, but aren't that common, pretty much for the same reason you are having trouble seeing the cost benefit to host directly with a tier 1. Their transit pricing is also very high, so most data centers have trouble seeing the cost benefit of paying for transit costs that high, WHEN you can pay much less for a tier 2 that peers directly with a given tier 1. If you colo in city that is also a major peering point (Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta, LA, etc) then chances are your tier 1 and tier2's will peer in that city, so your latency to get to the tier1 you want may be ~1ms.

    IMHO if you want to reach a certain tier 1 without the cost, find a major market that I listed above, and find a provider with several good tier2's, ask for peer paths and traces, and find one that has a good direct peering path to where you want to get to. The one extra hop is really of no concern, even more so if you find a good colo with two or more tier2's with a direct path to the tier1, so if one has issues and or congestion, it can be routed around.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsmrent View Post
    This way I could provide services with shortest path for other users which are not on NTT
    Just keep in mind, the "shortest" path is not always the best.

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    Even when hosting directly with a Tier1, you're likely to have at least one extra AS hop, as hosting services and ip transit are generally operated as separate divisions, and use separate AS numbers as well. You should not expect there be any more cohesion than if you you were buying hosting services from a completely disparate company. If anything, as anyone who has dealt with Tier 1's extensively can tell you, you are more likely to have more trouble getting the two divisions of the same company to co-ordinate with one another than if you were just using a completely separate company.

    If you think dedicated hosting services from a company that operates a Tier 1 transit network are of any particular 'grade', you are sorely mistaken. Such services from the same companies that operate Tier 1 transit services exist for one simple reason: to capitalize on their brand to take advantage of customers who don't know other options exist. You pay a much higher price for a lower quality service than you would find from a company that actually has dedicated hosting as their core product.

    Another thing to keep in mind is that Tier 1 providers only have shorter AS paths to their on-net routes (i.e. their customers). For any destination networks that aren't downstream customers of theirs, there will not be any advantage. They will need to hand off to another Tier 1 they peer with, which is no better than if you were on a network that purchased transit from that 2nd Tier 1. In fact, due to the nature of Tier 1 networks and their restrictive peering policies, in many cases you will end up seeing longer AS paths.

    So let's separate your requirements as to what they are in reality. If you want to pay an arm and a leg for poor service, that's up to you. I don't have any recommendations for you on that front. If all you want is the shortest AS path, I'd recommend simply working with a dedicated hosting provider that uses several Tier 1 transits. Having one extra ASN in your path for that actual provider is unavoidable, but as mentioned above, in most cases you will not be any worse off than if you were purchasing service from the company with a Tier 1 IP transit division.

    However, if you really want to cut out that one ASN from your path on only a selection of routes, while getting the same or possibly longer AS paths on other routes, that is technically possible. Some solutions for you would be:
    1) Purchase transit directly from the Tier 1, and use the dedicated hosting provider's servers as if they were carrier neutral. Much harder to find than just renting a cabinet in a carrier neutral facility though.

    2) Have the dedicated hosting provider request IP space from one of their Tier 1 transits, specifically just for you to use, and somehow connect this down to your actual dedicated servers. All your servers would either be on that specific block, assuming the Tier 1 sets it up as directly connected, or you'll need a layer 3 switch setup just for you to do the routing.

    In either case, this would be a one-off, custom solution which you should expect to pay a premium for. You most likely will not be saving any money. However, you would be guaranteed to actually get the shortest possible AS path for that one network's downstream routes, and most likely will end up with better service as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Microlinux View Post
    Just keep in mind, the "shortest" path is not always the best.
    Much agreed. Especially in some cases like say NTT where the USA it their "home territory." They may have sparse peering in the USA (meaning things get routed all over the place to connect to another network).

    You really are better off to be with a hosting company that has a top of the line network (i.e. more than one tier-1 or tier-2 providers).

    There is no real benefit to having a shorter AS path. It won't mean much. At the same time, the equipment used to hang Verio off NTT is probably just as much as some other reputable hosting provider would have too.
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  13. #13
    I do not get that. Why would you need to get hosted in data center operated by any Tier 1 ISP. It will cost you a fortune. These companies do not offer Colocation to the general market. They do it for other carriers and corporate networks. You'd not even get proper service there. You can go and connect to any major carrier in any well-wired data center and it would be less expensive, while you;d get the same good bandwidth.

    PS: Just to add that when it comes to data centers Tier 1, 2, 3, 4 is very different classification.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsmrent View Post
    I agree that being multi-homed is usually the goal, but in this case I would like to maintain the shortest AS path possible so if I were to host directly at Tier 1 provider (ex: Level3, AS3356), my AS path from webhostingtalk.com could simply be 32244 3356 and that is it. Two hops from current ASN to Level3. And if webhostingtalk.com was also a Level3 customer/ASN, it would be a single, "in-network" route (AS3356 only).
    Considering that "shortest AS path" does not necessarily mean shortest path in milliseconds, or shortest path in router hops, I am curious why you are specifically looking for a dedicated server that is shown as being on a Tier1 ASN. Is it just for marketing reasons? Or, what is the reason?
    Tranquil Hosting

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ionity View Post
    How do you figure that?

    AT&T, Verizon, etc would be considered Tier-1

    Nlayer, HE.net would be considered Tier-2

    Hosting-Provider would be Tier-3

    as far as networks are concerned
    technically nlayer is now "GT-T" which as a whole is a tier1 now..... Or at least that is how they flaunt themselves now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HostColor View Post
    I do not get that. Why would you need to get hosted in data center operated by any Tier 1 ISP. It will cost you a fortune. These companies do not offer Colocation to the general market. They do it for other carriers and corporate networks. You'd not even get proper service there. You can go and connect to any major carrier in any well-wired data center and it would be less expensive, while you;d get the same good bandwidth.

    PS: Just to add that when it comes to data centers Tier 1, 2, 3, 4 is very different classification.

    Not true at all. Several of the Tier-1 carriers offer colocation space. Sure it isn't cheap, but they do offer it, and it's not only meant for carriers.
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  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Ionity View Post
    Not true at all. Several of the Tier-1 carriers offer colocation space. Sure it isn't cheap, but they do offer it, and it's not only meant for carriers.
    Well I should have been more precise. Obviously Tier1 carriers offer colocation to the general market. One would go ask for the pricing and then to compare to any average data center.

    "Not true at all" is too strong, sounds like a judgement, don't you think so
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    Quote Originally Posted by HostColor View Post
    Well I should have been more precise. Obviously Tier1 carriers offer colocation to the general market. One would go ask for the pricing and then to compare to any average data center.

    "Not true at all" is too strong, sounds like a judgement, don't you think so
    It is what it is. Your statement was not true.

    It will cost you a fortune
    Not always true. Depending on what market you are in a carriers colo facility, while having a high price may in fact cost less than using an off-broadway facility and getting transport back to the Tier-1 carrier IP POP.

    These companies do not offer collocation to the genreal market. They do it for other carriers and corporate networks
    Again not true. You can buy colo from Level3, Savvis, Verizon, XO, etc. without you needing to be a carrier or corporate network.

    You'd not even get proper service there.
    Why not? Are you saying that Savvis / Verizon Terremark and other facilities are unable to provide proper service?


    On a side note... I was going to ask you for a reference in regards to your experiences with Internap in the Chicago market (per your signature), however I don't see them listed as a peer on http://bgp.he.net/AS46873 are you using Internap in a different network then?
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  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Ionity View Post
    It is what it is. Your statement was not true.


    Not always true. Depending on what market you are in a carriers colo facility, while having a high price may in fact cost less than using an off-broadway facility and getting transport back to the Tier-1 carrier IP POP.


    Again not true. You can buy colo from Level3, Savvis, Verizon, XO, etc. without you needing to be a carrier or corporate network.


    Why not? Are you saying that Savvis / Verizon Terremark and other facilities are unable to provide proper service?


    On a side note... I was going to ask you for a reference in regards to your experiences with Internap in the Chicago market (per your signature), however I don't see them listed as a peer on http://bgp.he.net/AS46873 are you using Internap in a different network then?
    It is not like you need a reference It looks like you need to say what's true and what's not I also use bhp.he.net. It is a nice place to find a reference. However it is not something that would make you to say "Eureka". We get Internap bandwidth through a partner and push a a low amount of traffic though this port. If a customer wants' Inernap it get's it, however. Now you know! I don't know why the uplink to our partner is not displayed there. As fas for the carriers we use, all 3 of them are good and we are happy with the quality we get. Even if we weren't and I'd say anything, you'd always say "Not true" or "Not always true"

    Is there any particular reason to ask what's the quality of Internap in Chicago area btw?
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    Quote Originally Posted by HostColor View Post
    It is not like you need a reference It looks like you need to say what's true and what's not I also use bhp.he.net. It is a nice place to find a reference. However it is not something that would make you to say "Eureka". We get Internap bandwidth through a partner and push a a low amount of traffic though this port. If a customer wants' Inernap it get's it, however. Now you know! I don't know why the uplink to our partner is not displayed there. As fas for the carriers we use, all 3 of them are good and we are happy with the quality we get. Even if we weren't and I'd say anything, you'd always say "Not true" or "Not always true"

    Is there any particular reason to ask what's the quality of Internap in Chicago area btw?

    Okay, I'd like to sign up for a server that will have access to Internap bandwidth.

    Can I do this with a VPS or does it need to be dedicated/colo? If yes, please send me a quote for a VPS with Internap, I'd like to pay quarterly please.
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