According to EMC Corporation, the digital universe is doubling in size every two years. It will experience 10-fold growth from 4.4 trillion gigabytes in 2013 to 44 trillion gigabytes in 2020. Throughout this period, however, data centers and Internet exchanges alike will experience many hurdles related to connectivity, security and reliability.
The Open-IX Association, backed by a long list of members including industry heavyweights Google, Netflix and Microsoft, was created to tackle these issues. The association’s main goals include increasing the reliability, resiliency and competitiveness of massive-scale interconnection for all. With the support of interconnect and data center professionals around the globe, Open-IX has developed Internet Exchange (IX) and data center standards, and certified 26 data centers and four exchanges across North America and internationally since its inception in 2013.
Key reasons for Open-IX’s creation include:
- To offer consensus-based community standards for IXs and data centers: When a data center or Internet exchange is declared Open-IX certified, it means the entity meets acceptable operational and technical standards, promotes uniform specifications for data transfer and physical connectivity, and creates resiliency to improve reliability. Becoming OIX-1 and OIX-2 certified not only signifies a certain level of service excellence, but also confirms that the entity’s infrastructure and systems enable the reduction of complexity that restricts interconnection in fragmented markets as well as the implementation of business-critical environments, international IP core networks or content platforms.
- To establish a global network of certified, distributed data centers and IXs: Open-IX works to ensure that businesses have a variety of IXPs and data centers from which to choose – referred to as a distributed model. Such a model helps ensure neutral, reliable and affordable connections, enabling businesses with alternative connectivity options in many trusted data center and IX locations across the globe. Expanding Internet connectivity through more neutral and distributed data centers also helps to create healthy competition and a diversified marketplace.
- To facilitate easier expansion and connectivity within domestic and international markets: In addition to helping overcome Internet challenges through data center and interconnection standards, Open-IX aims to make expansion in the U.S. and abroad easier for businesses. In lieu of costly hands-on assessments, business leaders can look for the Open-IX seal of approval as a standard of excellence and high performance when evaluating IXPs and expansion into new data centers.
For more information about the Open-IX Association, visit www.open-ix.org.