Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Third world networkers view on simplicity

Greetings bloglings!

Simplicity in design is often overlooked. We have done some really impressive networks over the last couple of years. The data center networks have evolved. VPN's are now IAAS and Im pretty sure marketing guys will keep churning buzzwords to confuse (and unlock customer wallets).

RFC 3439 states in part:

'The Simplicity Principle, which was perhaps first articulated by Mike
O'Dell, former Chief Architect at UUNET, states that complexity is
the primary mechanism which impedes efficient scaling, and as a
result is the primary driver of increases in both capital
expenditures (CAPEX) and operational expenditures (OPEX). The
implication for carrier IP networks then, is that to be successful we
must drive our architectures and designs toward the simplest possible

there Ive saved you money.

Every once in a while after a design team is done and implemetation happens. Things start going wrong. a link here, a backdoor over there. statements like Oh I dont understand IS-IS can I use OSPF for this segment? are heard!

recently/actually currently Im on leave for a month and it just so happens that a friend wanted me to help them re-design their network. Its a hospital (large hospital) big budget for gear, sadly not enough for 'people' to run/support the network.

Anyway. thinking about it, I dont see for instance why hospitals in Kenya cant come together like banks and do a common core. It would save them al lots of money. If a service provider like Safaricom were to be bold enough, nothing stops them from selling their core to the same hospitals. It would save everyone money and some serious future support issues (considering they dont want to hire people).

the task of building a large scale packet network is not easy it can be done, but its not as easy as these guys tend to think. ok back to the drawings....

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