National LambdaRail

NLR Blog

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

NLR All Hands Meeting Scheduled

NLR is hosting an All Hands Meeting next month. The meeting is open to members and member participating institutions.

Dates: Tuesday, October 7 and Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Location: Denver Airport Marriott at Gateway Park

More information about the event including the draft agenda and hotel information can be found at

NLR is accepting proposals for presentations at the event. If you would like to submit a proposal, please contact Bonnie Hurst. You should also contact Bonnie if you wish to attend the meeting but are not a member or a participating institution of a member.

Upgrade Install Update - Cross-connects, colo, designs, and more

We've been working hard on a variety of projects related to getting out colo in shape for the installs/upgrades. We've consolidated racks in Boise, Ogden, and Denver and upgraded the power in the newly freed up racks to support our new 15454 systems. Power upgrades are just starting to deliver from Level(3) right now. Our new colo through the heartland and East coast is almost ready to deliver and we'll be doing work in McLean/DC, Atlanta, and Jacksonville very shortly in order to consolidate the racks there, and in Sunnyvale and LA along with our partners, Cisco Systems.

Cross-connect orders for the East coast and middle of the country (McLean/DC to Seattle) have been placed. We're holding off on the order for the West coast until CENIC is done with the fiber (the loaner fiber there is coming from them). I am concerned that a jumper may be prematurely pulled if we were to order now. On the East & West coast we have loaner fiber from MCNC and CENIC, and will be having the final cross-connect plugged in by Level(3) when ordered. In the middle, we're just having the jumpers pre-run in case we have a problem with the existing cross-connects. All of this is because the 15808's use FC connectors and 15454's use LC. We'll be attaching a small pigtail to convert the FC to an LC during the upgrade, to get around any potential scheduling problems with Level3 and the FSX, but we'll be removing the pigtails after the route is up, one a night, in order to gain back the loss we introduced and simplify the layout.

We have completed designs, but are just now finishing up the final tweaks to them: assigning specific channels to specific customers and layout out their gen cross-connects. We have final designs for CHIC-KANS and WASH-JACK and have passed them on to Lightriver, our installation contactor. The other routes are waiting upon the delivery of the brand new CTP v9 and its support for RAMA amplification, which the other routes all use.

Colo delivers, cross-connect deliver, design finalization, and equipment delivery is all having an impact on the schedule. Currently we are scheduled to begin screwdriver installs around October 15 and perform the last handover in mid-January. Slippage on the colo delivery, cross-connect delivery, or equipment delivery will impact those dates.

Our first route installed & turned up will be WASH-JACK, and we're preparing the rerouting of several of our customer waves even as I type. We're bringing up new circuits from Starlight to Atlanta to shorten the latency of the wave reroutes that JACK-ATLA customers would otherwise face. I expect to talk to those customers at the end of the week to work out a schedule and solution that's best for them.