Establishing favorable peering relationships and monitoring them constantly to ensure they are adhered to is complicated and time-consuming. Peering engineers must constantly monitor ingress and egress traffic to decide if and when it makes sense to peer with other autonomous systems, and if so, which ones. Without constant monitoring, unexpected charges could be triggered when a direct peer switches to upstream peering. When an external traffic spike occurs, it is important to quickly determine the traffic source and destination, and whether it is truly a peering issue or one that was caused by an IGP routing change. In the case of prefix floods or droughts, or when anomalous prefixes are advertised by an AS, operations teams need to know immediately to triage the incident to avoid a service interruption or security threat.
Needless to say, real-time telemetry and powerful analytics are required to assess peering requirements, monitor external traffic, and troubleshoot issues. Packet Design’s SDN-ready Explorer Suite is used by both regional and global network operators to engineer and manage their peering relationships. Engineers and planners can easily display real-time and historical views of BGP traffic volume for each peer, the type of traffic, its source and destination, the ingress and egress points, and the transit ASs it traversed. Operations teams are alerted immediately to anomalous traffic or prefixes, and for forensic analysis of peering issues engineers can replay routing events at any point in time to pinpoint exactly what happened. When planning a peering change, an interactive modeling capability enables engineers to simulate the change on the live network to see exactly how it will affect the state of routing and traffic, and avoid unexpected results.