Pakistan to Get its First Internet Exchange Point in Two Months

Pakistan is soon going to setup its first internet exchange point for all local ISPs that will help reduce latency rates for domestic traffic with-in the country to a greater deal, we have checked with sources.

Under the headship of Pakistan Telecommunication Authority and in collaboration with Internet Society (ISOC), this Internet Exchange Point will be located in Islamabad for which hardware is currently being setup and exchange is likely to go live with-in next two months.

Majority of ISPs, including PTCL, are already on-board while discussions with remaining ISPs of Pakistan are under way to make sure that all domestic internet traffic goes through this Internet Exchange Point.

For those who aren’t familiar, an Internet Exchange Point is used to exchange local internet traffic internally with-in the country between ISPs instead of looking-up international exchanges and networks.

Currently if you are sitting on PTCL and if a ping is sent for a website/server that is hosted on TransWorld for example, then traffic is routed through international exchanges that reside outside Pakistan.

Such an internet request, which is local —  and distance between client and server could be just few kilometers — has to travel the all way to an exchange that’s hosted abroad and then will hit back local server after travelling thousands of kilometers, increasing latency rates and decreasing data transfer rates.

ISPs readiness — in terms of hardware and software — for joining this exchange is already there and there’s nothing much technical that’s required on ISP’s part to join the local internet exchange.

This internet exchange is going to help local hosting companies, data centers, service providers, banks, corporations and everyone who is hosting websites/services locally with-in Pakistan. It will also benefit ISPs greatly by not only enhancing their performance but also by reducing their bandwidth costs.

As mentioned above, this internet exchange is likely to be active and running with-in two months. We will update our readers when there’s any further development on this.

Tech reporter with over 10 years of experience, founder of ProPakistani.PK


      • I am not sure he is from PTI or not but being a PTI supporter we have one good thing, we say bad thing bad and good thing good, no matter who do it, unlike patwaris who will always roar like animals “sherrr” and never know for what reason they are doing it.

        • Let me remind you that there’s another group of people who are sick of both parties. Kindly take the political rabble elsewhere, as this post is entirely unrelated to the topic at hand.

          Learn to appreciate good things, don’t simply criticize just for the sake of criticism.

          Thanks

            • Your attitude is hardly surprising to say the least. In fact I can say its a trademark of PTI fanboys, being rude.

      • Not just IT people, the end users will benefit the most with the reduced latency for many services/sites!

    • Yes. Especially for gamers. Right now if you are on a Transworld based ISP e.g Worldcall, Connect, Wateen (?), Fiberlink etc. then you get around 150-300ms ping to a PTCL server within Pakistan. This local peering point should help bring it down to 10-100ms which is a huge difference.

    • aik waqt that jub meri bhi ap jaisi halat thi
      evo ka slow net
      but bro ab mere pass telenor 3G+ aor Zong 3G+ hay
      aor speed boht zyada hay more then 3 mbps speed on both 400 + KBPS transfer rate rehta hay

  • Unbelievable. Instead of facilitating online transactions and having services like paypal or even visa or MasterCard credit cards for online purchases so that online purchases may be facilitated which in my opinion is the biggest challenge facing e commerce in Pakistan. Even now, it is so difficult to buy things online in Pakistan using credit or debit cards I don’t see the e commerce jump starting before ease of facilitating online transactions.

    • These are two different avenues of development. The IXP will benefit the exchange of internet traffic in general. We should appreciate such efforts.

      And I agree, services like paypal should also be focused on

  • This is not the first internet exchange point. There is already an ISP peering facility called Pakistan Internet Exchange:

    https://opennet.net/research/profiles/pakistan

    According to wikipedia 98% of ISPs use it:

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_censorship_in_Pakistan#Pakistan_Internet_Exchange

    So can Aamir please put this new development into context for us? Is this an expansion of the existing exchange or a new one? However it is definitely not the first.

    • Interesting. I don’t think anyone uses it though. If they did use it, I wouldn’t be getting upto 300ms pings for servers within Pakistan.

      • “I don’t think anyone uses it though.”

        Read the second sentence in my comment above. 98% of ISPs in Pakistan use it. An internet exchange would be useless if no one was using it. Connecting different ISPs is the entire point of the thing.

      • Then the title should be changed to reflect that. It is not the first internet exchange. It is the first one not owned by an ISP.

        Still I’d like to point out that according to wikipedia 98% of ISPs in Pakistan use PIE so is a regulator run exchange really going to add much value to what we already have? If it’s headed by a government agency then it’s going to be bad for the people’s privacy.

    • Well, I can tell that at least Nayatel is using PIE, I see traffic routing between PTCL and TW1 internally.

    • There are two problems with your 98% figure:

      1. You left out the other important piece of information: 98% of the traffic used PIE in 2004. Much has changed since 2004. TW1 did not launch in Pakistan until after 2006. Now, a lot of ISPs use TW1, and some use both.
      2. There is absolutely no source given for that 98% figure. Someone just typed it in and there’s no way to verify its truth today, in 2015. Wikipedia articles are only as trustworthy as their cited links, and that figure has none.

  • For those worried about snooping and serveillance by Pakistani/ Foreign spy agencies; you’re worries are indeed genuine. BUT the answer to stopping that is passing and enforcing the necessary legislation to reign in our own ISI + better security of our infratructure; not closing down of peering points.

      • Local peering is a good thing to have but for a proper web hosting industry you need much more. Infrastructure and human resources are the most important things. Bandwidth is still too expensive in Pakistan, there aren’t enough data centers where you can colocate your server cheaply and there aren’t enough skilled workers.

      • ?? Then you should also stop using AdSense. Come on, Pakistani hosts will never be reliable if they started hosting sites on local servers. First, majority of Pakistani professionals actually lack technical ability to handle critical problems, secondly we have huge power cut problem. So, down times will always be a headache and downside for your online business. You will observe steep decline in raw search traffic due to fall in SERP.

  • Users from all over the Pakistan facing some major issues regarding the service quality of the Ptcl internet, so this might be the reason though!

  • Any particular reason for setup in Islamabad, consumers are in Karachi, not to mention under sea cable terminating in the city.

  • koi fida nahi jab link he down rahay ga to kya karna hai. wasay bhe in prices or quality main koi bhe webservices nahi provide karay ga jaha tak mujhay lagta hai. agar koi karay ga to shaid usay alaj karana chaye. Log servers k mamlay main us jesay countries ko he prefer kerain ge. na hr ka masla na koi technical issue. ye tab tak chalay ga jab tak cost kam or quality behtar nahi ho ge :P

    Jazbati kar dia


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