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Elephant in the room - Akamai

Last time I spoke with an Akamai engineer many years ago the network was purely transit. Is that evolving?

From: NANOG <nanog-bounces at nanog.org> on behalf of Jared Mauch <jared at puck.nether.net>
Sent: Sunday, December 8, 2019 6:10 PM
To: Brandon Martin <lists.nanog at monmotha.net>
Cc: nanog at nanog.org <nanog at nanog.org>
Subject: Re: Elephant in the room - Akamai

> On Dec 8, 2019, at 11:48 AM, Brandon Martin <lists.nanog at monmotha.net> wrote:
> I guess what I'm getting at is that it sounds like, if you cannot source the content locally to the peering link, there's not likely to be an internal connection to the same site from somewhere else within the Akamai network to deliver that content and, instead, the target network should expect it to come in over the "public Internet" via some other connection.  Is that accurate?
> Thanks for the clarifications.

<personal hat fully on>

I was hired at Akamai to design the network architecture for a global backbone.  This is proving to be an interesting challenge taking a diverse set of products with various requirements and interconnecting them in a way that saves costs and improves performance while my employers traffic continue to grow.

<personal hat off>

<work hat on>

Akamai is built to use the paths available to deliver traffic and meet our customers and our business goals.  Not all our sites are interconnected and itâ??s extremely unlikely (read: possibly never, but who knows) you will see all your traffic come over a direct link or cache.  With any sufficiently complex system, plus the acquisitions we have made over my short tenure itâ??s almost impractical to integrate them all quickly or possibly at all.

I personally want to make sure that we deliver the traffic in a way that makes sense, and a few people have seen those efforts but thereâ??s also many things in progress that are not yet complete or ready for public consumption.  I believe thereâ??s room here to improve and each time we can turn a switch or dial a knob to better serve our customers and the end-users that we are paid to serve, everyone wins.
<work hat off>

Enterprises vs consumer ISPs have very different traffic profiles, and I think the genesis of this thread was a direct result of a very consumer oriented traffic profile that was unexpected.  People have wondered why I would spend so much time watching things like Apple rumor websites in the past, itâ??s because that would lead to high traffic events.  You go to where the data is.  The same can be said for other large download events or OTT launches.  Everyone knows a live event can be big but generally bound by the target audience size.

As software is attacked within minutes or hours after security patches are released, I donâ??t find it surprising these days that systems automatically download whatever they can the moment itâ??s released from gaming consoles to IoT and server and OS patches.

If the traffic is causing you pain, I encourage you to reach out so we can look at what might be improved.

- Jared
(I swear Iâ??ll stop responding.. off to make lunch)
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