Metro Capacity - Metro Ethernet


The Metro Ethernet service of Open Peering can be used to make a wirespeed and unlimited 100 Mbit/s, 1 Gbit/s or 10 Gbit/s standard ethernet connection between all relevant neutral datacenters in and around Amsterdam at a very low, flat rate, cost.

The service is available both as layer3 (to connect routers) and as layer2 (to connect switches) link. Metro Ethernet can only be used for standard ethernet and not to transport traffic types like dot1.q VLAN ethernet trunks, MPLS or SDH. For such applications the Metro Wave and Metro Fiber services are better suited.

A Metro Ethernet starts at € 200 per month (and € 500 install) for 100 Mbit/s and at € 500 per month (and € 1.000 install) for 1 Gbit/s (3 year contracts).


Flat Rate

Traffic on the Metro Ethernet is unlimited, wirespeed and flat rate.

Dedicated and private: secure

Metro Ethernet connections are completely dedicated and private. Customer connections are completely seperated from eachother, so it is impossible for users of one connection to obtain access to a different connection, even if it is owned by the same customer.

Default: Layer3 (routed)

The Metro Ethernet service is designed and intended to be used for layer3 (Network Layer in the OSI model) communication between two IPv4 routers (or layer3 IP switches).

This means that on both endpoints the customer can only connect an IPv4 router, and only one ethernet MAC address (of the router) should be visible.

Any other equipment connected between the the Metro Ethernet service and the customer router, for example a layer2 ethernet switch to extend the connection, should be completely quiet and not originating any traffic itself (like CDP/Cisco Discovery Protocol, STP/Spanning Tree Protocol, etc) on the connection. Traffic of any other equipment located futher in the customer network, behind the IP router, should only be visible as IP routed traffic, with the MAC address of the IP router.

Port Security

The endpoints of the Metro Ethernet service are protected by Open Peering using Port Security/Port Protection (a dynamic form of MAC filtering) as technical implementation of the layer3 (one MAC address per side) policy. Port security temporarily (5 minutes) shuts down the customer port if to many MAC adresses are visible.

This type of security protects the Metro Ethernet infrastructure and all other customers against risks like MAC flooding, unknown unicast floods, switching loops and broadcast radiation or storms.

Optional: Layer2 (switched)

Open Peering does offer an optional layer2 (Data Link Layer in the OSI model) ethernet variant of the Metro Ethernet service. In that case the customer is allowed to connect an ethernet switch to the service and multiple MAC adresses are allowed to be visible on the customer port.

However, in that case the exact amount of active MAC adresses and allowed on the connection are pre-agreed with Open Peering, and port security is still in place to protect the Metro Ethernet service if more then the agreed amound of MAC adresses is visible. The maximum cannot be higher then 32 MAC adresses.

For applications where a limitation on the maximum amount of MAC adresses is undesired, the Metro Wave and Metro Fiber services op Open Peering are better suited.

Ethernet based

The Metro Ethernet service implementation of Open Peering is a pure Ethernet based service. It uses Ethernet II framing and supports only IPv4 type packets (EtherType set to 0x0800).

Multiple dot1.q VLAN IDs in the Metro Ethernet service

Instead of standard ethernet Open Peering can optionally offer the Metro Ethernet in a IEEE 802.1q ("dot1q") ethernet form with multiple VLAN's (priced per extra VLAN id). The VLAN ID's will be assigned by Open Peering, and are not free to choose for the customer. The same port security policy as applicable on regular Metro Ethernets is in place, though in this case one MAC address is allowed per VLAN on each endpoint instead of just one on each endpoint port.

Maximum Packet Size

The maximum packet size supported is 1518 bytes, consisting of a 18 bytes Ethernet header (and trailing CRC) and a 1500 bytes ethernet packet payload.

The Maximum Transmission Unit (MTU) for IP packets is therefor 1500 bytes. As IPv4 packets have a 20 bytes IP packet header, that leaves 1480 bytes for the IP packet payload. For TCP/IP packets, which contain an additional 20 bytes TCP header, this leaves 1460 bytes for the TCP/IP packet payload.

The effective Maximum Segment Size (MSS), which is the largest amount of data that can be handled over the service in a single unfragmented piece, therefor is 1460 bytes for TCP/IP over Metro Ethernet service.

The service does not support larger packets or Jumbo Frames (which conventionally can carry up to 9000 bytes of ethernet packet payload).

Dot1.q and MPLS not supported

It is not possible for customers to create private IEEE 802.1q VLAN's or MPLS over the Metro Ethernet service. Such techniques would require larger ethernet packets to handle the additional header data and still support the same effective MTU and MSS, and larger packet sizes are not supported.

For such applications the Open Peering Metro Wave and Metro Fiber services are better suited.

Line (Point-To-Point), Star (Point-To-MultiPoint) or Cloud (MultiPoint/Broadcast)

In telecommunication terms, a link can be of different types:

- Line (Point-To-Point):

The default type of Metro Ethernet services Open Peering provides are of the Line or Point-To-Point type: communications is restricted to two endpoints.

- Star (Point-To-MultiPoint):

Optionally, Open Peering does also offer Star shaped Point-To-MultiPoint Metro Ethernet links. In that case one datacenter site is chosen as central location, and from there connections can be made to multiple 'local' ports at other datacenters via seperate dedicated VLAN's.

This solution is very suited for Service Providers using the Metro Ethernet as distribution platform towards their customers, like for example transit or DSL providers. With only one port they are able to distribute their service in a secure way to customers at any datacacenter where Metro Ethernet is available. The customers are isolated from eachother and can only communicate with the service provider at the central port.

- Cloud (MultiPoint/Broadcast):

A third alternative Metro Ethernet service type Open Peering offers is Cloud or MultiPoint/ Broadcast. In this case not two but multiple locations/ports, all equal, are connected to eachother over one single ethernet Broadcast Domain. Each location can directly reach each other location within the same Metro Ethernet (VLAN). This solution is useful for interconnecting multiple datacenters.

Cable and connector type

The cable and connector types and other specifications of the service differ, depending on the chosen connection speed:

- 100 Mbit/s:

The Metro Ethernet service supports 100 Mbit/s connections based on the 100Base-TX standard, using 8P8C connectors (look almost identical to and are often confused with RJ45), EIA-568-B pin assignments and Cat5e Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP) cables. The maximum distance between Open Peering and the customer equipment on the datcenter (patchcable length) is maximum 100 meter.

- 1 Gbit/s:

Metro Ethernet connections on 1 Gbit/s speed are offered only over optical fiber, based on the 1000Base-X (officially IEEE 802.3z) standard, by default in the 1000BASE-SX (850 nm) variant over multi mode fiber (with 62.5/125 µm core/cladding diameter) using SC connectors. The maximum distance between Open Peering and the customer equipment on the datcenter (patchcable length) is 550 meter.

1000Base-LX (1310 nm) connections over single mode fiber (with 8-10/125 µm core/cladding radius), which support upto 2 km distance are optionally also available.

- 10 Gbit/s:

Metro Ethernet connections on 10 Gbit/s speed are offered based on the 10GBase-LR (1310 nm) standard over single mode fiber and supports patchcable distances upto officially 10 km, and in practice often even upto 25 km (depending on the cable loss specifications and quality).

No Autonegotiation on 100 Mbit/s

On 100 Mbit/s Metro Ethernet connections Open Peering does not allow the customer to use autonegotiation to determine duplex (full or half) and speed (10 or 100 Mbit/s) on it's ethernet endpoint ports. The ports should be configured in the right settings manually to prevent duplex mismatch.

Further, if the 100 Mbit/s ethernet interface on the customer side is of the MDIX type (generally switches) instead of MDI (routers), then a crossover cable needs to be used as patchcable, instead of the default straight cable. If your equipment supports Auto MDI/MDIX, then that should be disabled and cannot be used instead of a crossover cable.

Physical implementation

A Open Peering Metro Ethernet is implemented as a static path over a network of switches, interconnected over a physical fibers that run a route through wll protected underground tubes between datacenters. The service availability directly depends of the availability of the switches and the fibers underlying the switch path followed. If any of the switches or fibers in the path experience an outage, the Metro Ethernet service is also impacted and in standard solutions NOT automatically rerouted.

Outages, repair and rerouting

For restoration of the service after an outage, the failing switch or physical fiber needs to be repaired in such cases. Repair time depends very much on the type of outage, and can be anywhere from seconds upto 8 hours. In some cases, even while the Metro Ethernet service is not experiencing an outage, still emergency maintenance can be required to repair outages for other customers, stabilize the platform or prevent future outages. During emergency maintenance the service can be down as well. During longer outages, Open Peering will manually reroute the Metro Ethernet link via a different path, if possible. Such manual intervention takes some time, but drastically reduces the outage duration. The chance on such an unplanned outage or emergency maintenance is rather small: on average less then once every three years.

Planned maintenance

During planned maintenance with a longer duration (e.g. more then 30 minutes), on any of the switches or fibers underlying a Metro Ethernet path, generally Open Peering attempts to reroute the service over other switches or fibers well in advance. Longer during planned maintenance does not occur very often: on average less then once a year. However during brief planned maintenance (e.g. less then 5 minutes), the service will not be rerouted and will be down during the maintenance. Maintenance is always announced well in advance and executed only during a nightly maintenance window.


In order to improve availability and redundancy it is possible to order a Metro Ethernet Ring. In that case two seperate links are provided over seperate and geographically dispersed underlying physical fibers, which strongly reduces the chance on planned or unplanned outages. Redundant Metro Ethernet rings are not available on all datacenters and pricing is custom.


Please check the NLix site for Metro Ethernet prices or contact us



The Metro Ethernet products of Open Peering are implemented over the NL-ix Internet Exchange infrastructure.

100 Mbit/s and 1 Gbit/s is available on all NL-ix datacenters, altough on some datacenters custom pricing applies.

At 10.000 Mbit/s the product is readily available at the euNetworks, GlobalSwitch, Nikhef, SARA, Telecity AMS1, Telecity AMS2 and Telecity AMS3 (Redbus) datacenters. At other datacenters special custom pricing applies.


  • 100 Mbit/s ports are available on RJ45/UTP connector only;
  • 1 Gbit/s ports are offered on multimode fiber (SX/850nm) by default, but also available on singlemode fiber (LX/1310 nm) at an additional initial fee of € 500,-;
  • 10 Gbit/s ports are available on singlemode fiber (LR/1310nm) exclusively.

Does not include patchcable

The demarcation point of the service is the port on the Open Peering (NL-ix) switch on the datacenter. After an order is placed with Open Peering, in the order confirmation a port ID will be assigned. With that port ID the customer can order the patchcable from its equipment to the Open Peering (NL-ix) switch port with the datacenter directly.

Delivery time

Delivery time of all products is max 10 working days, but generally we can do it (much) faster. Please reserve some time (a few days) after this order delivery to jointly thoroughly check on both sides if the connection is 100% okay before taking it into production.