Anupam Agrawal

Author Archives: Anupam Agrawal

Kolkata IX: The Maiden Community Internet Exchange in India

In 2015, the Internet Society Kolkata Chapter decided to create an Internet Exchange Point (IXP). It had just completed the installation of L-Root Instance, a critical Internet infrastructure to improve security and resiliency of the Web.

It chose the IXP model specifically because it was working towards hosting an authoritative Domain Name System (DNS) root zone for a top-level domain (TLD), another essential infrastructure of the Internet. But they didn’t know where to begin.

So, the team evaluated cost models and the market and held an outreach event with the Internet Service Provider (ISP) community. The engagement raised interest, but no one joined the IXP. The expectation was that Content Distribution Networks (CDN) would kick off the IXP, before others could join. Tushar Kanti Bhakta, a senior member of the Chapter’s board, suggested community building could help.

With no equipment, no members and no CDN, the team started community building efforts. It held workshops where it invited potential members to discuss Domain Name System Security Extensions, DNS, and the Border Gateway Protocol, the routing protocol for the Internet. Each workshop gave the team the opportunity to pitch the idea of a community IXP in Kolkata.

After two years of engagement, Continue reading