One of three major network exchange points in the vicinity of the World Trade Center complex lost power and shut down last night.
Telehouse International, which runs a network exchange at 25 Broadway, across the street from the famous bull statue on Wall Street, advised customers just after 5 p.m. EST last night that its generator failed due to overheating. Business continuity experts have been warning since yesterday that backup diesel generators are not reliable and could shut down because of dust in the air.
As a result of the pending shutdown, the New York International Internet Exchange, which is colocated at 25 Broadway, suspended operations, affecting carriers that connect to American data networks via that location. Portions of 6IIX exchange peering IP version 6 traffic also have been disconnected. Other customers affected include InterNAP and Verio. AOL has been colocating at the exchange, but its not clear at press time if it was a customer. If similar exchanges go down, a number of dialup Internet access providers, including large consumer ISPs like AOL, may lose their facilities as well. As a result, New York customers dialing into the Internet will hear more busy signals or receive error messages.
A major public peering exchange like NYIIE going down had little effect on connectivity from New York to European locations. Cable & Wireless, France Telecom, Genuity, Qwest Communications International/KPNQwest, Sprint, UUnet and Verio have been seen handling their international IP traffic efficiently from the 111 8th Ave. location, where they peer privately.
Overheating that caused the Telehouse generator to break down makes restoring power to the facility easier said than done. Air traffic is still largely grounded and getting spare parts into New York City is no small feat. Some vendors have rented trucks to get critical goods into the city. Commercial power in the World Trade Center area is not expected to come back until the weekend.