How Fast Can A Network Go

Supercomputer makers may have their own shoot-outs, but nothing like the bragging by networking equipment makers. Foundry Networks, not really a force to reckon with in the routing space sent me a press release about its gear was used in a new Internet2 land speed record. (I2-LSR).

For the IPv4 record, a team from the University of Tokyo, WIDE Project, Microsoft Corp., Pacific Northwest Gigapop, JGN2 and other institutions collaborated to create a network path over 30,000 kilometers in distance crossing eight international networks.

Using the IPv4 protocol, the team achieved 7.99 Gbps transfer rate over multiple paths exceeding 30,000 km, setting a new record of 239,820 Terabit-meters/second. For the IPv6 record, the team transferred data at a rate of 6.18 Gbps over a 30,000 km path resulting in a mark of 185,400 terabit-meters per second (Tb-m/s) – 10.75% more than the previous record.

The record was set using three Foundry Networks’ NetIron 40G IPv4/IPv6 dual-stack routers configured with 10-Gigabit Ethernet Wide Area Network Physical Layer Interfaces (10-GbE WAN PHY) connecting to the trans-oceanic optical transport network. The I2-LSR competition for the highest-bandwidth over extended distances is an open and ongoing contest.