Some data centers feature a Meet-Me Room (MMR), which provides an opportunity for communications firms to exchange data with hundreds of other major telecom carriers and Internet service providers (ISP) housed within the same facility.
There are two types of facilities that are used for network to network interconnections and their ambiguity is often used interchangeably. The MMR is typically a small space, approximately 5,000 square feet, located in a major carrier hotel. For spaces larger than a MMR, carrier-neutral data center can be a stand-alone building, detached from carrier hotels. Even though terms are quite vague, there remain key differences when examining the two categories of interconnection requirements.
These rooms are gateways to the Internet and allow quick, reliable, and cost-effective connections between the buildings tenants. Telecommunications organizations and providers are able to connect to each other and peer, or exchange information, without incurring local loop fees. MMRs are filled with cages and cabinets containing servers and switches linked by thousands of cable connections. These physical connections are what allow the world’s information to be transmitted to individual computers.
Without peering, individuals would only be able to link to sites hosted by their own ISP. These Meet-Me Rooms are located inside data centers or carrier hotels. They are a small, yet integral part of the structure. In these spaces, telecommunication companies can install network equipment, facilitate network connections and take advantage of cost efficient solutions for back-up power and security.
MMRs are broken down as such:
- MPOE—main point of entry — Short for minimum point of entry, the closest practical point to where the cables of a telecommunications service carrier (i.e., a phone or cable company) cross a property line or where its wiring enters a multi-unit building. The MPOE of a multi-unit building is typically 12 inches inside the building’s foundation.
- POE—point of entry
- POP—point of presence
- NAP—network access point
- DMARC—demarcation point — a way to make it easier for email senders and receivers to determine whether or not a given message is legitimately from the sender, and what to do if it isn’t. This makes it easier to identify spam and phishing messages, and keep them out of peoples’ inboxes.