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DS3 Ordering Experiences

  • From: Andy Dills
  • Date: Thu Feb 22 15:05:32 2001


This might help some people ordering DS3s from UUnet in the future, so
I'll post it here for the archives.

We ordered a DS3 to UUnet last July, and after several blown FOC dates, we
finally started passing packets last night. (And man, nothing like 2 ms
latency and being able to measure downloads in MB/s.) Thank god the
circuit is quality, or this would be an entirely different post.

UUnet was amazingly slow: 7+ months to terminate a DS3 to Frederick, MD,
50 miles north of their world headquarters.

The main reason they were so slow is because of the way they tried to
design the circuit. They have various 'legacy' systems (worldcom isn't one
big happy family) that they must check with to determine if they have the
proper capacity to bring the circuit to your location. Checking with each
of these legacy systems takes up to 21 days or even more. And here's the
fuckup:  They check each one serially, instead of all at the same time.
So, with us, they hit worldcom, mci, and mfn (I believe) before they
realized they don't have the capacity, and had to contract AT&T. They
didn't contract AT&T to backhaul our circuit until DECEMBER. The entire
time from July to December, they were checking with their legacy systems
to determine if they had capacity. Had we told them to check all three at
the same time, we could have saved 2-3 months.

So, some things we have learned from this experience, that I would like to
pass on to future people:

1) If you are not in a metro area, and are ordering a circuit of any sort
with UUnet (or that touches Worldcom in any way), demand up front that
they check all of their legacy systems for capacity at the same time.
Request to be informed of the completed circuit design within 30 days.

2) Escalate early and often, and be aggressive. Give them a chance to
deliver the circuit design, but if the circuit design isn't done in 30
days, escalate every three days until it's done.

3) Every time they miss a FOC date, escalate two levels. Believe me, once
you start annoying the VPs, things start to happen _real_ fast.

4) Be an asshole when you order the circuit with regard to the SLA; demand
that for every month after 90 days that the circuit is on order (but not
installed), you get a free month of service.

So, it was the world's biggest pain in the ass to bring up, but now that
it's installed, I love it. <does the bandwidth dance>

Andy

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Andy Dills                              301-682-9972
Xecunet, LLC                            www.xecu.net
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