Together with the ING a 100Mb connection was rented which connects us to the 1Gb link from the observatory to the outside world. Previously we had two links (normal + backup) from our offices to the ORM and then down, which was our way out of La Palma. Now we keep the backup line up to ORM, but our access to the Internet is more direct.
Unfortunately, this new link has showed to be flawed as of lately, and it has brought back the issue of alternative routes for us to use when there are failures in the connection. The new link, however, brings us a scenario where we may use one of two routes leading to different points to deliver our network traffic, and actually that's how we are solving the current problem with the 100Mb connection while it's properly repaired.
Until now we have been working with static routes, meaning that each time one of this routing changes are needed, someone has to actually change values in a few places and, potentially, also cabling. The new routes have added an extra step that implies contacting with someone at IAC to make changes on their equipment if we want a proper working connection.
The solution is to switch to a fully dynamic routing, that switches the traffic from one circuit to other when needed, propagating changes over the network where needed. This would benefit both the traffic from the ORM and from the offices in Santa Cruz. This requires a few changes in hardware (both at our offices and at ORM) and to ask the IAC to do some other (software) changes on their side. We are currently looking for the appropriate hardware and we are preparing an implementation plan.
Thomas Augusteijn 2009-01-15