Deutscher Commercial Internet Exchange

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Deutscher Commercial Internet Exchange
DE-CIX GERMANY - Switch Rack (6218137120).jpg
Full name Deutscher Commercial Internet Exchange
Abbreviation DE-CIX
Founded 1995
Location  Germany
Members 609
Ports 1121
Peak 4952.1 Gbit/s
Daily (avg.) 2025.8 Gbit/s

Deutscher Commercial Internet Exchange (German Commercial Internet Exchange) (DE-CIX) is a carrier and data center-neutral internet exchange point (IXP) situated in Frankfurt (Germany). It is the largest exchange point worldwide in terms of peak traffic with a maximum throughput of more than 4 terabit per second.[1] In addition to DE-CIX in Frankfurt, DE-CIX operates internet exchange points in Hamburg, Munich, New York (DE-CIX New York), Dubai (UAE-IX), Palermo (DE-CIX Palermo),[2] Marseille (DE CIX Marseille),[3] and Istanbul (DE-CIX Istanbul).[4]


DE-CIX was founded in 1995 by three Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Back then, German Internet traffic was still exchanged in the US and there was a lot of room to improve latency and to reduce the cost for backhaul connectivity. Three providers decided to establish an Internet exchange in a back room of a postal office in the Gutleutviertel in Frankfurt. Hamburg-based MAZ, EUNetworks from Dortmund and XLink from Karlsruhe were the ones that initially connected their networks in Frankfurt at DE-CIX.

DE-CIX was managed by eco Electronic Commerce Forum, which is now known as eco, the association of the German Internet industry. Other providers joined and made DE-CIX and Frankfurt the hotspot of the German Internet. In 1998, DE-CIX moved its switching hardware to the Interxion data center in Frankfurt.

By 2000, DE-CIX had become Germany’s largest Internet exchange and was ranked one of the larger Internet exchanges in Europe. DE-CIX added its second switching site at the Interxion campus in 2001[5] and a third site, in close proximity to its original roots, at the TelecityGroup data center in 2004.

Until 2006, Cisco switches supported both the growth in customers and traffic. DE-CIX extended its reach to additional data centers, introducing Force10 and Brocade switches and scaling the platform to over 700 10-Gigabit ports. Over the years, DE-CIX attracted networks from all over the world, especially from Eastern Europe, leading to an annual traffic growth rate of up to 100 percent a year.


Today, DE-CIX connects 600+ ISPs, including broadband providers, content delivery networks, web hosters, and incumbent operators. DE-CIX is available at 18 data centers throughout Frankfurt, including e-shelter, Equinix, Level(3), ITENOS, Interxion, New Telco, TelecityGroup and Telehouse.[6]

In 2013, DE-CIX introduced DE-CIX Apollon, its new Ethernet-based platform. DE-CIX Apollon operates ten Alcatel-Lucent 7950 XRS routers, six routers act as edge devices that support 1GE, 10GE and 100 GE customer connections and four routers are used for the redundant core network.[7] The routing layer is combined with an optical layer based on ADVA Optical Networking’s FSP 3000; the optical layer delivers a total capacity of 12 terabits per second across its mesh-network topology.

The platform provides transport speeds of up to 2 Terabits per second per fiber pair and supports port density of up to eighty 100 Gigabit Ethernet ports per chassis, with a total of over three hundred 100 Gigabit ports available across its entire optical network. The platform is able to grow 10-fold without major changes.

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