What is cross connect?

Jeggs101

Well-Known Member
Dec 29, 2010
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Not sure of your context so I'm inferring here:

Think about taking a piece of Cat7 or fiber and connecting it from your cabinet into another cage or cabinet in a data center.
 

nitrobass24

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Dec 26, 2010
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I am assuming you are referring to have to pay for a cross connect at your collocation.

A cross-connect would directly connect you to other networks or business partners in order to decrease latency and increase availability of your service or access to others services.

For example, Google has their Main DCs, but they also have POPs (point of presence) at many locations across the US at collocation facilities where there are a lot of connectivity options. 2323 Bryan St, is one of these locations in Dallas. Google has a cage with networking equipment and they cross-connect to ATT, Verizon, Sprint, TWC and a whole lot of other providers. This a allows ATT, Verizon, TWC subscribers, faster access to google services.
 

uberguru

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Jun 7, 2013
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I am assuming you are referring to have to pay for a cross connect at your collocation.

A cross-connect would directly connect you to other networks or business partners in order to decrease latency and increase availability of your service or access to others services.

For example, Google has their Main DCs, but they also have POPs (point of presence) at many locations across the US at collocation facilities where there are a lot of connectivity options. 2323 Bryan St, is one of these locations in Dallas. Google has a cage with networking equipment and they cross-connect to ATT, Verizon, Sprint, TWC and a whole lot of other providers. This a allows ATT, Verizon, TWC subscribers, faster access to google services.
Well very good description...but just this part i do not get. So you mentioned google connect to Att, sprint etc...well are connecting their router to their routers or switch to their switches?

I am asking this because i am on a research to understand how networking and the internet works. I understand connections for the most part are physical..but i do not yet fully understand how much physical..is it 100% physical? Well if you say yes 100% physical so that means when i perform a traceroute what is really happening is all the hops are all physically connected? All the routers are all physically connected? If that is so..how is this possible when going across states, countries and continents?

That is the part i am yet to fully digest yet..if you guys can help me with this..that will be really appreciated.
 

uberguru

Member
Jun 7, 2013
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Not sure of your context so I'm inferring here:

Think about taking a piece of Cat7 or fiber and connecting it from your cabinet into another cage or cabinet in a data center.
Well i kind of get the idea but not the full concept yet...read my other response right above up
 

sloop

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Mar 18, 2013
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Well i kind of get the idea but not the full concept yet...read my other response right above up
"Cross connect" in a co-location or telecom facility just refers to cabling that is run outside of 1 customer's cage/rack.

For example, if you rent a rack in a datacenter and want to connect to AT&T which also has a rack, you would need to order a cross-connect from the datacenter to connect between your rack and AT&T. A customer isn't allowed to just walk in and run their own cabling through the datacenter's cabling trays.

The 'cross connect' just refers to the physical cabling between two endpoints, it doesn't matter if they are plugging into a router, switch, firewall, etc. When you order a cross connect, you just specify which physical medium you need (for example: Cat5, or single mode fiber, or multi mode fiber).

There is almost always a fee associated with getting a cross connect, in some facilities it may be a one-time charge for materials and labor, but in more popular datacenters there is usually a monthly charge as well. The inter-connection aspect has turned into a big money maker for facilities like TelX and Equinix.
 

nitrobass24

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Dec 26, 2010
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To add to what sloop said, in addition to the NRC and MRC. You also need a peering agreement with whom you want to connect. You can just call your colo provider and say hey xconnect me to ATT, you need a signed agreement from ATT.
 

Mike

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May 29, 2012
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Everything is connected physically to answer your question. Now, not everything is point to point!

Let's see if that points ya in the right direction. Some providers and exchanges are pretty open minded about their infrastructure. Those can give you a nice impression on how things really work.
 
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uberguru

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Jun 7, 2013
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Everything is connected physically to answer your question. Now, not everything is point to point!

Let's see if that points ya in the right direction. Some providers and exchanges are pretty open minded about their infrastructure. Those can give you a nice impression on how things really work.
What do you mean not everything is point to point?

Also does that mean they run cables across countries? continents? across the ocean/sea?
 

nitrobass24

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Dec 26, 2010
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What do you mean not everything is point to point?
Everything is not connected to everything else directly (aka point to point). When you go to google.com, you go to your internet provider, your internet provider goes to an internet exchange, and maybe another internet exchange until it gets to an IX where google has a cage that has been interconnected to an ISP via a peering agreement. Then you get to see google.com

Also does that mean they run cables across countries? continents? across the ocean/sea?
Yes lots of them

I already know 100% of whats in the entire video...you may want to read my specific questions very well...my questions are more detailed than what the video provides.
Your questions above seem to suggest otherwise.
 

LeoS

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Jun 19, 2013
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@uberguru:

"The more you learn, the more you realize what you don't know."

Be humble dude, if we already know 100% of everything then no one will be chatting here; and imagine if we're all snippy when someone mentions things that 'we already know'.

Learning (and being humble doing it) is a useful skill not only so you get the valuable help from others but so your mind is receptive to all the new tidbits of information so you can learn quickly.

I've watched that youtube video again and there are some relevant points in it (watch the part about peering) that partially answers your question. I should add that the internet is not 100% technical. There are lots of economic forces that drives it, so think of what peering means for each parties to understand how they work. (IE: if you ask to peer with google, you'll have to ask yourself what google would gain from having access to your network, to understand how they would feel about giving you direct access to their network).
 

uberguru

Member
Jun 7, 2013
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@uberguru:

"The more you learn, the more you realize what you don't know."

Be humble dude, if we already know 100% of everything then no one will be chatting here; and imagine if we're all snippy when someone mentions things that 'we already know'.

Learning (and being humble doing it) is a useful skill not only so you get the valuable help from others but so your mind is receptive to all the new tidbits of information so you can learn quickly.

I've watched that youtube video again and there are some relevant points in it (watch the part about peering) that partially answers your question. I should add that the internet is not 100% technical. There are lots of economic forces that drives it, so think of what peering means for each parties to understand how they work. (IE: if you ask to peer with google, you'll have to ask yourself what google would gain from having access to your network, to understand how they would feel about giving you direct access to their network).
I didn't say 100% of everything..i said 100% of whats in the video...and i am not joking about that. The part i wanted to understand is how does cable pass across the sea? I mean thats the part i am not sure of. I mean how long will this cable be and which company run cables under the sea? Also i have heard about not only cable that sometimes...through satellite and to my surprise which was the answer i was waiting for...no one mentioned "Oh you know what sometimes not physical cable but sometimes using satellite"...but no...no one brought that up..so that is just the part i wanted to understand..i know lots about peering and exchange points..and pop locations..already
 

MiniKnight

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Mar 30, 2012
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I didn't say 100% of everything..i said 100% of whats in the video...and i am not joking about that. The part i wanted to understand is how does cable pass across the sea? I mean thats the part i am not sure of. I mean how long will this cable be and which company run cables under the sea? Also i have heard about not only cable that sometimes...through satellite and to my surprise which was the answer i was waiting for...no one mentioned "Oh you know what sometimes not physical cable but sometimes using satellite"...but no...no one brought that up..so that is just the part i wanted to understand..i know lots about peering and exchange points..and pop locations..already
Underwater cables are usually bundles of fiber. Routers are made to be submerged and have many redundant backups. Service costs suck there.

Satellite is used much less frequently for obvious reasons.