HKIX taps Cisco for infrastructure revamp

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 29 September, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 29 September, 2009, 12:00am

Hong Kong Internet eXchange (HKIX), the networking platform connecting all of the city's internet access providers, has made its most critical infrastructure revamp in years to meet a massive surge in data traffic.

To cope with growing intra-Hong Kong and intra-Asia traffic, HKIX has become the first among the world's leading internet exchanges to adopt Cisco Systems' high-performance Nexus 7000 series switch technology, according to exchange administrator Cheng Che-hoo.

He declined to provide the financial terms of the systems upgrade, but noted the revamp was needed to meet increased market demand for 10-gigabit network ports and new services from its members.

The exchange has seen traffic volume grow more than 80 per cent over the past two years. And there was no sign growth would abate, even during the economic downturn, said Cheng, an associate director for infrastructure at the Chinese University of Hong Kong's Information and Technology Services Centre.

The exchange is a co-operative project founded in 1995 and located at the CUHK.

HKIX serves more than 100 organisations including those from the academic fields and commercial enterprises, such as fixed-line telecommunications and mobile broadband service providers.

According to Cisco, a 10 gigabit per second internet connection between networks allows download or upload speed of about four seconds for a full DVD movie.

By comparison, using a combination of two one-gigabit-per-second internet connections takes about 19 seconds to do that. A typical 6Mbps home broadband connection takes about two hours.

'The revamp will enable us to provide our members with greater bandwidth and more reliable connectivity,' Cheng said.

Barbara Chiu, the general manager at Cisco Hong Kong and Macau, described the HKIX project as a 'pioneering deployment' in Asia that solidified the exchange's continuing role in internet development in the city.

Data deluge

Over the past two years, HKIX online data traffic volume grew more than: 80%