Why Your Data Center Should Be Carrier Neutral

Inside a data center, 123Net believes your choice of carrier should not be limited to the data center owner. We make it as easy as possible for new carriers to build into our data centers. Opening the doors to more carriers greatly benefits businesses looking for more robust, diverse networks.

What Does Carrier Neutral Mean?

Having more options is a good thing. A carrier neutral data center, often referred to as a carrier hotel, is a facility that offers its customers the ability to purchase connectivity from any carrier in the building. Since these facilities are independent of providers, customers are open to many more carrier options. There are several factors that make carrier neutral facilities more desirable than their carrier-affiliated counterparts:

Diversity

Keeping your network running 24/7 is critical. Having carrier diversity, meaning multiple carriers connected to your business’s network, provides a backup option if a single carrier experiences an outage. Carrier hotels have a major advantage in that they support carrier diversity, whereas single provider data centers are less able to.

Cost-Effective

Using a carrier neutral facility can naturally lower the price of services through competition. When there are fewer options to choose from, customers are more likely to settle for higher prices. Moving to a new data center can be a costly and time-consuming process, so selecting a carrier neutral data center allows competition to keep costs low, without having to move to change providers.

Internet Exchange Connectivity

Carrier neutral data centers can also host internet exchanges. Internet exchanges allow enterprise, service provider, and carrier networks to peer with one another, lowering latency, network hops, and costs.

123Net has four, Tier 3, carrier neutral data center facilities and hosts the Detroit Internet Exchange (DET-IX), a not-for-profit regional exchange point in Michigan. To learn more about 123Net’s data centers, or to schedule a data center tour, visit https://www.123.net/data-center/

St. Clair County RESA Partners with 123Net to Revamp Fiber Usage

SOUTHFIELD, Mich., October 02, 2018 – Starting an essential change in how their fiber network will be utilized, St. Clair County Regional Educational Service Agency (St. Clair County RESA) is partnering with 123Net, a premier provider of data center, network, and voice services for Michigan businesses. RESA’s fiber network that brings high-speed internet access to schools, public libraries, and municipalities throughout St. Clair County will be improved and expanded, while 123Net will gain access to the County to serve the community’s businesses.

St. Clair County RESA created their fiber network, stretching about 200 miles throughout the county, more than 20 years ago. Through this new partnership, RESA will gain a larger fiber network, and significantly reduced cost for internet service. RESA also gains access to the largest, privately owned, carrier neutral data center in Southeast Michigan and the Detroit Internet Exchange (DET-IX), one of the largest peering hubs globally. 123Net, in turn, will be able to expand into St. Clair County and offer more competitive connections to private St. Clair County businesses and industries. These businesses will be able to peer with any of the participants of DET-IX. 123Net is in the process of building two 10 Gbps virtual pipes between their Southfield data center and the RESA, providing an added layer of redundancy to the county’s connectivity.

Dennis Buckmaster, RESA’s Director of Information Technology, is optimistic about the future of this partnership. “Much of our area is significantly underserved, and bringing more providers to the area will only help our community,” Buckmaster said. “This partnership with 123Net will help to close that gap for our county and our businesses. I see this partnership continuing to grow in the future.” 123Net expects to finish the construction of a new internet backbone along the St. Clair River sometime this year. Given its location across from Canada, this expanded network will host multiple ports ideal for international trade.

Businesses in the area expecting to benefit from the partnership include automotive parts manufacturers, agricultural centers, power plants, and Michigan’s salt-mining industry, among others. This initiative will also provide a roadmap for other counties to follow to create a similar structure and capitalize on opportunities for their communities.

“It’s exciting when we’re able to partner with groups like St. Clair County RESA,” said Chuck Irvin, Director of Network Development at 123Net. “We’re dedicated to providing Michigan businesses with the best service possible, so it’s really a win-win for everyone involved when businesses get the connections they need, the RESA is able to grow and upgrade inexpensively, and we get to expand our footprint to another community that we can serve. We’re looking forward to this inspiring other communities to leverage our solutions and partner with us in similar ways.”

About 123Net

123Net is a Michigan-based Internet service provider focused on equipping businesses with industry-leading data center, voice, fiber, fixed wireless and other network services. Home of the Detroit Internet Exchange, 123Net maintains the largest carrier hotel and peers with technology leaders such as Google, AWS and others. For more information, please visit http://www.123.net/news

About Det-IX

The Detroit Internet Exchange (DET-IX) is a not-for-profit Regional Internet Exchange Point (IXP) with a switching fabric expanding throughout Southfield, Michigan. Membership and ports are free. The collaboration of carriers, ISP’s, Content Providers, and Enterprise Businesses connected to DET-IX allows for traffic to be exchanged freely, rather than paying to make the connection. This not only reduces the cost of exchanging traffic but provides a localization of traffic for the 4.5 million inhabitants of the Detroit metro area. For more information visit https://www.123.net/det-ix/

About St. Clair County RESA

St. Clair County Regional Educational Service Agency supports St. Clair County’s seven K-12 public school districts including middle size city, suburban, and rural school settings.

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123Net Media Contact:

Ihor Diachenko

Director of Marketing

idiachenko@123.net

248.228.8244

Why Your Business Should Implement SIP Trunking

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services are becoming the go-to way to manage business voice. One of the most popular options is Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunking, which is more cost-effective and flexible than most legacy voice services.

What is SIP Trunking?

A SIP trunk provides voice and data traffic between users’ phone systems and the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) over a single IP network. It is a way to deliver high-capacity, secure, premium quality voice for businesses.

Scalability

SIP trunks have an interface that is better suited for growing businesses. Traditional phone systems often carry a 23-channel capacity, meaning that additional callers can only be added in increments of 23. Businesses with SIP trunks can add as many paths as needed, ensuring that they only pay for the interface they need.

Security

Businesses in industries such as government, healthcare, and education require ultra-secure connections for voice communication. Session border controllers (SBC) make SIP trunking systems secure for any business that requires secure voice. The SBC is a point of security between users and third-party callers providing the following features:

  • Topology Hiding & Privacy – The IP network topology of the business is hidden to prevent attacks. This protects user information and creates a layer of privacy between networks. Media is also monitored to prevent intercepts and fraud.
  • Access Control – Only known networks, devices, and applications are permitted to access the enterprise’s voice system.
  • Encryption – SIP enables the encryption of media.
  • Denial of Service (DoS) – Protection from malicious attacks and non-malicious overloads.
  • Virus & Worm Protection – SIP is protected from malicious attachments and messages containing viruses, worms, and trojans.
  • Logging, Monitoring, and Reporting – Attacks and overloads are reported and monitored.

Call Quality

One of the best ways to measure the quality of a voice call is a Mean Opinion Score (MOS). The scale gives a numerical score for call quality ranking from one (bad) to five (excellent). When VoIP technologies first came to the market in the 1990’s, phone voice quality took a step back, however current SIP trunking systems are now equivalent, if not better, in call quality.

The call quality of SIP trunking solutions typically ranges between four and five on this scale, meaning call issues are nearly imperceptible. Maintaining a high MOS is critical for all businesses. Weak voice quality leads to mental fatigue, reduced productivity, and a poor overall experience.

Flexibility

SIP trunks give businesses the flexibility to route voice traffic over redundant data circuits. If a primary connection is disrupted, voice traffic can be seamlessly routed over redundant fiberfixed wireless, or Ethernet over copper using IP Failover. Having these redundant measures in place drastically reduces the chances of a business missing an opportunity due to voice services.

To learn more about upgrading your business’s voice services with 123Net’s SIP trunking, visit https://www.123.net/sip/

What Does a Data Center Cross Connect Mean for You?

123Net’s data centers facilitate your need to be better connected. Cross connects allow you to reduce access costs to get to the carrier of your choosing. You can save money and improve the connectivity of your network.

What are Cross Connects?

Cross connects are physical cables that connect two different networks within a data center. Cross connects can be used to create a more diverse, robust system of networks. The top three reasons to use a cross connect are:

Lowering Latency

A direct connection means no provider will stand between your network and the carrier network to which you are connecting. Cross connects avoid the pubic internet because they are through private point-to-point connections within a data center.

Offering Convenience

With a cross connect, you will be able to connect to any carrier residing within your chosen data center. This eliminates the need to find other network points to connect to carriers that often times require network builds that take time and add costs.

Providing Options

Adding multiple internet connections to your network can help you take advantage of different carriers. With cross connects, you can select internet providers based on price, reliability, or connectivity.

Cross connects enable you to establish direct connectivity with other carriers. Services such as dark fiber, wavelength, MPLS, or other point-to-point services are available with a single cross connect. Network cross connects to other carriers can save money, improve reliability, and add versatility to your network.

123Net has four Tier 3, carrier neutral data centers with access to over 20 carriers. Learn how you can take advantage of this diverse variety of networks by scheduling a data center tour with 123Net today at https://www.123.net/data-center/

How IP Failover Protects Networks

Backup solutions, such as IP Failover, avoid network downtime, keeping your business connected and productive. It’s immediate and cost-effective, so your business continues generating revenue and preserves its reputation, regardless of unforeseen circumstances.

How It Works

IP Failover equipment is backed by an intelligent system designed to detect Internet service disruptions. If a problem with the Internet is detected, traffic is automatically transitioned to a predetermined backup connection. Customers are seamlessly routed back to the primary when Internet is restored.

Since 123Net handles public IP addressing, real-time applications are not interrupted during circuit outages. VoIP calls will remain intact. IP Failover is even compatible with MPLS network configurations. Customers can also opt to use a secondary connection from another carrier and 123Net will build virtual circuits over it.

Last-Mile Protection

When primary and secondary connections are transported through the same medium (i.e. physical cables), it leaves enterprises in a vulnerable position. 123Net’s flexible solution is compatible with multiple Fiber, Fixed Wireless, Ethernet over Copper, and 4G LTE connections. This diversity protects network connectivity during damages to physical cables caused by construction, car crashes, weather, and other uncontrollable events. IP Failover can also be used to maintain connectivity during circuit maintenance.

IP Failover With 4G LTE

4G LTE is a wireless backup solution that integrates perfectly with IP Failover equipment. 4G LTE offers:

  • High Availability: Utilizing nationwide wireless providers, 123Net’s 4G LTE delivers high-speed Internet access to remote sites that may not be able to access traditional backup services.
  • Rapid Deployment: 123Net’s 4G LTE is typically up and running within only 7 to 14 days.
  • Simplified Billing: Receiving a primary and secondary connection from the same provider simplifies billing and bookkeeping, so you can focus on business-critical tasks.
  • Cost-Effective Rates: Low monthly plans without repair costs.
  • Reliability: 4G LTE provides a redundant connection that is not prone to physical disruptions.

123Net’s IP Failover solution combines high-speed Internet connectivity with immediate, flawless network protection. With IP Failover in place businesses have the peace of mind that their network is protected from the unexpected.

Learn more about how you can protect your connectivity with 123Net’s IP Failover.

7 Essential Considerations for Choosing Your Business Internet Service Provider

When it comes to choosing an Internet service provider (ISP), there are a lot of options out there. So how do you know you’re making the right choice? In this blog, we’ll take a look at the 7 most essential considerations for choosing your business ISP.

1. Need for Speed:

Bandwidth needs come down to what your business does. If your business runs small programs and emailing, you probably won’t need much. If your employees send large files and graphics, you’ll probably need a bit more. If you have a lot of employees online at once, or if you do a lot of streaming, video conferencing, or cloud computing, you’ll likely need more still. It can be tricky to know exactly what your business needs, but our Account Executives are happy to help. For more information about meeting your business’s speed needs, contact us.

2. Support Availability:

You know your business best, so find an Internet service provider that’s available when you need them, whether that’s around-the-clock, or during “normal” business hours. It’s also important to consider how you’re able to get ahold of them. Do they use an automated system, take phone calls, or accept support tickets? Make sure your ISP communicates in a way that works for you and your business.

3. Fine Print:

What Service Level Agreements (SLAs) do they offer? If you need 99.9% uptime, will they promise it? ISP’s that don’t guarantee uptime can leave you stranded for days while your business loses money and even customers. Choosing an ISP with a high SLA leaves your business in better standing should anything happen. It’s also important to consider what contract lengths they offer and the pricing discounts that may come along with longer contracts.

4. Bundling:

It’s far easier to work with one vendor than three or four. Many ISPs also offer other services, such as Voice or Data Center. When you bundle multiple services with your Internet service provider, you’re often able to get discounts. Billing and support are also easier, as you only work with one company.

5. Location:

It’s important to consider what types of connections an ISP offers in your area, such as Ethernet over Copper (EoC), Fixed Wireless, or Fiber. Each of these offer potentially different speeds and deployments. Knowing that customer support is based locally is also a consideration. When support teams service their local areas, they’re working with the business that are in their own backyard. Personal relationships with their customers lead to a more engaged level of care. A local support team also knows the area better and is more likely to be in-the-know about events that may impact service, such as inclement weather.

6. Timing:

Various connection types may also impact install time. High bandwidth Fiber may take longer to deploy, but it can reach much higher speeds than other options. Fixed Wireless, on the other hand, can be deployed in as little as a couple days. Choose an ISP that can meet your time table. If you need Fiber, but need Internet access quickly, you may want to look into providers that offer both Fiber and Fixed Wireless. While you wait for the Fiber to be built out, utilize the Fixed Wireless connection short-term. You may even consider keeping your Fixed Wireless as a back-up for Fiber going forward.

7. Security:

Keeping your business’s network secure protects your information, along with your customers’ information. Your ISP should be as devoted to your security as you are, if not even more.

How Does 123Net Compare?

We’re committed to providing the best possible service to our customers. With our Dedicated Internet, we have options that provide symmetrical speeds up to 100 Gbps, making sure you have the bandwidth you need to cover any business application. Our Ethernet Private Line keeps your traffic on your connections, and off the public Internet, so it stays safe and secure. All of our services come with a 99.99% SLA. Our Support Team is available 24/7/365 to handle your questions and concerns, and work in the same offices as the rest of our teams, so we’re always connected to what’s going on with your circuits. Our Fixed Wireless can be deployed in as little as couple days. It’s a great interim solution while waiting for Fiber and offers a reliable secondary connection for added redundancy. To learn more about our services, visit: https://www.123.net/business-solutions/