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Internet2 and KanREN

What is Internet2

I2
Internet2 is THE advanced research and education network. KanREN is the only I2 connector in Kansas; meaning all traffic destined for I2, traverses KanREN's network.
Internet2 a colloborative project by hundreds of universities and advanced research organizations from around the world. Internet2's primary goals and objectives include:

  • First and most importantly, creating and sustaining a leading edge network capability for the national research community.
  • Second, directing network development efforts to enable a new generation of applications to fully exploit the capabilities of broadband networks.
  • Third, working to rapidly transfer new network services and applications to all levels of educational use and to the broader Internet community, both nationally and internationally.

How do I get to Internet2?

KanREN supports Interent2 connectivity for all of its members via a 10Gbps link to the Great Plains Network (GPN).

GPN is a consortium of regional optical networks and "statenets" in Midwestern states. From a technicial perspective, GPN facilitates a larger community of networking professionals and researchers. For an organizational perspective, GPN provides a single "jump-off" point into Internet2. This allows for cost sharing amongst multiple states wishing access to I2.

Why is Internet2 Important?

Internet2 is important in different ways to different user groups.

  • For researchers, it opens many opportunities for collaboration with peers across the world.
  • For networkers, I2 provides access to the newest, bleed-edge technology from the people who are constantly reinventing The Internet.
  • For real-time video users, I2 provides stable, undersubscribed access to most universities' front doorsteps at extremely low latency.

This diversity sometimes leads to one user group believing I2 was built for only their use. This is simply not the case; Internet2 was built and continues to thrive because it supports ALL user groups' needs.

Internet2 - Commercial Peering Services

KanREN participates in Internet2 Commercial Peering service.  The Commercial Peering service leverages existing Internet2 connectivity and investment by connecting directly to large commodity Internet traffic generators, data aggregators and carriers.  I2 CPS engages in settlement free peering with these entities (including aggregators such as PAIZ, Equinix, etc. and generators such as Yahoo, Google, YouTube, etc.) to help members reduce commodity Internet traffic costs, enhance network performance, and assure net-nuetral connections to the largest content providers.

KanREN has been connected to the I2 CPS environment since its inception, and to date, KanREN sees approximately 20%-25% off-load of would-be Internet traffic to the I2 CPS.  This leads to lower costs for members AND significantly increased performance when accessing CPS-enabled services.

Best part: KanREN's advanced network provides access to CPS with no additional configuration from members.  Best of all worlds!

Internet2 Myths and Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Myth: Internet2 is an Interactive Distance Learning (real-time video) network.

    Answer: While h.323 video is an excellent candidate for Internet2 transport, Internet2 represents much more than simple IDL video sessions. More than anything else, Interent2 is an opportunity for collaboration amongst people in geographically diverse areas of the world. Many collaboration opportunities exist and users are encouraged to check the Interent2 website for a listing of I2 Communities and Technical Working Groups.
  2. Myth: Internet2 requires special addressing.

    Answer: This is completely false. Internet2 is like any other external BGP peering session. Based upon routes provided by Internet2, KanREN's backbone routing nodes will select whether Internet2 provides the best path to reach your destination. In other words, if you're a KanREN member, you're connected to Internet2.
  3. Myth: If I'm trying to reach another university, my traffic is using Internet2.

    Answer: Not all universites are I2 participants. To check your destination, please check the Internet2 member list (KanREN is an R&E Network Member). Additionally, some universities and organizations do not provide I2 access to all of their workstations. For example, some universities do not advertise IP blocks used by their residence halls due to small circuits into I2.
  4. Question: How can I tell if I'm connected to Interent2?

    Answer: One of the best methods of determining YOUR device's connectivity to Interenet2 is to perform a traceroute to www.internet.edu. Additional questions should be forwarded through your organization's technical support and networking groups.