National Institute for Subatomic Physics

Internet: AMS-IX

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Scientists and technicians from Nikhef have been involved in developments of the Internet right from the very start. The motivation behind this has always been the need for scientists to make disparate information and databases accessible in a quick and simple manner. As a result of this involvement, an Internet exchange was started in the mid-1990s in the Watergraafsmeer district of Amsterdam in cooperation with SURFnet, CWI and SARA.

At the start, in 1996, the exchange was small and informal but now, following the enormous expansion of the Internet, the Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX) with more than 250 clients is one of the most important in Europe. The exchange has two locations in Watergraafsmeer (Nikhef and SARA) and four locations elsewhere in Amsterdam.

Besides the clients of the Internet exchange, the telecom operators and the Internet service providers, Nikhef also houses organisations that contribute to the actual functioning of the Internet. A good example of this is the presence of two types of 'root servers': the K-root server from RIPE and the F-root server from ISC. These servers are essential for the domain administration on the Internet.

The contacts that result from housing a technically advanced Internet exchange allow Nikhef to closely follow developments in network technology.

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Or visit the AMS-IX pages.