Minutes of Working Group Meeting

IfA Facility, Hilo

June 24, 2004




  1. Current Network Status
  2. The only problem we had during the period between March 19 and June 24 had to do with the connection between the MKOCN summit router and the CFHT summit router. To recap: the CFHT summit router had been losing connection with the MKOCN summit router from time to time. The incidents did not seem to be tied to any particular event. High input and CRC errors rates were observed on the ATM interaces of both routers. The problem could be fixed temporarily by a reboot of the MKOCN summit router or by diverting the CFHT traffic to HP, although input and CRC errors then started to appear on the HP router. Cleaning fiber connectors and replacing ATM interfaces on both ends reduced error rates but loss of connection continued to occur. In May, the loss of connection spread to JAC, UH88, Gemini, as well as Subaru.

    Since the observatories' summit routers and the MKOCN summit router are directly connected through ATM, Pui Hin did not think that this was a routing issue. As a first step towards solving the problem, fiber connector cleaning was performed at the Summit Communication Room and the MK observatories. On the whole, the fibers are in good shape; however, several fibers had dirty connectors, including one between HP and the summit. One of CSO's fibers had excessive loss of signal and was replaced with an alternate fiber. The input and CRC error rates were reduced by the cleaning exercise.

    On May 10th, in prepartion of the wireless implementation of the HP common area, additional memory was installed in the HP router and IOS version was upgraded. Some bad ports were found on the 2924 Catalyst switch and that was also replaced.

    Loss of connection has not reoccurred since the connector cleaning at the summit.

  3. FY 04/05 Budget
  4. Pui Hin presented the proposed FY2004/05 budget with the following comments:

    The increase in the salary portion is due to the Union negotiated pay raise and other salary adjustments.

    The new budget item indicated as "utilities" represents charges for Tom Krieger's service by MKSS.

    The budget total for this year is lower than for last year even though the amount per share charged to the observatories is slightly higher. The reason is due to a lower fund balance this year.

  5. Connection to the 10 Gbps Southern Cross dual ring - IRNC funding opportunity
  6. In response to NSF's solicitation for proposals for International Research Network Connection (IRNC), UH-ITS submitted a proposal in partnership with other universities on the mainland. Awards will be announced in September. The hope is to get the funding to bring the 10 Gbps to Mauna Kea at 1 Gbps bandwidth for the short term; and for the long term, to build the infrastruture that will provide observatories and other scientific organizations with the opportunities to acquire cost-effective connections to the mainland as well as other parts of the world.

    Pui Hin presented an example of how a connection might be made between Spencer Beach, the landing point of the Southern Cross 10 Gbps network on the Big Island, and the MK summit. The cost of connection is very high in Hawaii. The "last miles" to the summit depend on additional services and reduced pricing offered by Verizon that is discussed in agenda item number 4.

  7. Wireless Implementation at HP
  8. Equipment for the common area is in place. However, the wireless subnet is only partially working. There are routing issues to be addressed. More testing has been scheduled for June 30th.

    Henry Stilmack pointed out that we still need to post a sign at HP to remind everyone to turn off the wireless capability of their laptops before going up to the summit.

    The big Eucalytus tree between HP and the visitor center is scheduled to be cut down on June 28th. Pui Hin believes the tree has been the source of the intermittent problems for the wireless connection between HP and the visitor center.

  9. Extension of Mauna Kea Observatiories DS-3 Verizon Services Agreement
  10. Pui Hin distributed handouts with new services and pricing for connections to the MK summit and base facilities in Hilo and Waimea. Two options were presented by Verizon: Verizon Optical networking (VON) and DWDM.

    The DWDM option will only be cost effective at bandwidth requirement upwards of 20 Gbps, at 20 Gbps bandwidth level, a Gigabit Ethernet will cost ~$6k/month and additional bandwidth will essentially be free.

    The VON is a point-to-point Ethernet-over-SONET solution. This service supports speeds of 10 Mbps, 100 Mbps and 1-Gbps (see note 1). The VON is not a replacement for the current DS-3 service agreement, rather it is offered in addition. Unprotected and protected VON (at higher prices) are offered. However, Verizon is not able to provide protection on Mauna Kea, due to the single cable implementation from Hummula to the summit.

    For pricing details, refer to the handouts distributed. Because of a tariff peculiarity, the saving for Hilo is much greater than for Waimea facilities. Waimea facilities will not see any saving below 1-Gbps bandwidth level. However, at 1-Gbps, saving is considerable even for Waimea facilities. The monthly recurring charge for a 1-Gbps service from Hilo to the summit is $7,000/month for a 5-year contract. This is a big improvement over the current $3,550/month for a DS3 (45Mbps).


    At this time, for the 1-Gbps service, Verizon will be able to provide a partial rate of 600Mb only. True 1 Gbps service will be offered at the end of 2004. Verizon will not say at this time whether the current price will apply.

  11. Rewiring for Observatories Hilo LAN
  12. Pui Hin has obtained a proposal from Verizon with two design options. The first one is based on pulling fibers from each observatory building to the IfA building. The second design is based on using an existing manhole closest to the IfA building as a splice point. Fibers will be pulled into the manhole from the IfA building as well as from each observatory building. This is similar to what we currently have except that the fiber panel in the manhole is replaced by a splice box. This design will eliminate the problems with the fiber panel and provide for future expansion by installing more fibers between the manhole and the IfA building then currently needed.

    The pricing from Verizon is higher than we have expected partially because of over provisioning. Pui Hin will work with Verizon to obtain pricing for a more realistic implementation. Pui Hin will also obtain proposals from other vendors in order to make price comparisons.

  13. MKAEC connections
  14. Pui Hin has been contacted by Bob Okuda, who is now working 20% of the time for MKAEC. Bob has convened a meeting to talk about MKAEC connections in the park. Since the center is installing 24 strands of fibers between the center and the UHH switch-gear, and 24 strands of fibers already exist between the UHH switch-gear room and the IfA, there is the potential for individual observatories to create temporary dedicated circuits to the center for special events. The MKOCN can also offer the center a redundant path to the MKO facilities in addition to their connection through UHH by providing a connection at the MKOCN router at the IfA building. However, this will need to be carefully implemented to forestall security problems in the future.

  15. Next meeting
  16. September 9th Thursday, 10:00 AM at CFHT, Waimea

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Last updated September 7, 2004 by Miranda Hawarden-Ogata