LANs The Heart of the Internet

It is a little-recognized fact that LAN technologies, because of their low price/speed ratio, still form the "heart" of the Internet—the place in which large numbers of major providers meet to exchange traffic with other providers. The original MAE-East and Federal Exchange points were based on Ethernet until they were later upgraded to FDDI and then switched FDDI, using Gigaswitches from Digital.

ATM was used at one or two public exchange points. However, more recently, Gigabit Ethernet switches are looking to be a promising technology. Providers establishing private peering at a co-location facility may use LAN technologies to connect their routers, rather than using ATM or Packet over SONET interfaces, which are more expensive in terms of price as well as router slot space.

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