Open-IX Association certifies three African internet exchanges

African ethernet

The Open-IX Association (OIX), a non-profit industry association, has expanded its reach to Africa by certifying three of the largest African based Internet Exchange Points (IXPs). They have obtained OIX-1 certification – the Association’s global Internet Exchange certification program.

As a result of the peer-review process, INX-ZA‘s Internet exchange points in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban are the first three IX’s in Africa to become OIX-1 certified.

OIX claims to be the leader in interconnection infrastructure standards, with three ANSI standards covering IXPs, metro edge data centres and data centres. The OIX Community Supported IX Program allows an opportunity for growing community supported IXs to offer transparency in their service delivery, enabling large cloud and content networks to rely on emerging IXP’s infrastructure and improving internet performance and resiliency.

These INX-ZA IXPs have all become certified through the OIX Community Supported IX Program. This program allows smaller internet exchanges, at no cost, to design and engineer their infrastructure and service platforms to be OIX-1 compliant, and to become part of OIX’s growing list of certified entities. Johannesburg’s IXP, JINX, is the oldest Internet Exchange Point in Africa, and amongst the oldest 25 IXPs still operational today, globally.

“We pride ourselves on being a 100 per cent community driven entity, and through our bottom-up governance, on representing the will of the community. As our industry grows, standards take on an even more important role. The opportunity for our IXPs to become OIX certified is something we value greatly,” said Donald Jolley of INX-ZA. “There is considerable activity happening in Africa, on the IX and peering front. As the oldest IXP in Africa and one of the oldest in the world, JINX is a prime example that openness, community and transparency matter, and that you do not have to be an IXP owned by a data center to be successful.”

Building on the original JINX, founded by ISPA, INX-ZA now operates multisite exchanges in Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town. These exchanges provide a neutral facility for ISPs and operators of IP networks to connect and exchange traffic in South Africa and encourage the routing of domestic internet traffic by providing an optimal path for traffic to reach other networks within the same city, country or continent. This reduces the usage of expensive long-distance links and improves network performance.

“We are extremely excited to welcome the three INX-ZA operated IXPs to the OIX-certified entity ecosystem,” said Eli D. Scher, chairman of OIX. “The mission of OIX is to expand fair access to interconnection services. We strongly believe that this benefits all constituents of the internet community, and OIX is seeing broad adoption of the OIX-1 IXP technical standards in North America, Asia and across the globe. The addition of these IXPs in Africa is a great testament to the increasing importance of reliable, open and transparent standards to ensure the reliability, resiliency and performance of critical internet services.”

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