Technical Components

Cloud Exchange Fabric (formerly known as Equinix Cloud Exchange) takes a component-based approach to service design and implementation. By this, we mean that users create their solutions using a platform-like set of microservices, or parts that can be bolted together one at a time or with some defined and preset configurations. Users create these solutions in the way that best suits their network and needs from a set of business objects that are combined in a variety of ways.

The component model is highly scalable and flexible and can be combined into nearly unlimited solution variations. The same components are used whether you are acting as a buyerA buyer is a user who connects to an available service through ECX. A buyer can be an enterprise end customer of the seller service or an aggregator, managed service provider, network service provider or system integrator company that bundles its service offerings with ECX. or a sellerA seller is a user who makes their services available to end customers through ECX. This guide refers to sellers for shorthand, but ECX generally regards a “seller” as an activity rather than a static person. or somewhere in between. Each component has a minimum viable operating state and a series of optional services that the user can add to enhance the design. In some cases, an optional service might be required depending on the configuration of other components in the solution. New services are added to the components with nearly every software release.

The following is a summary of the components involved in building solutions:

  • Port: a physical access point between an ECX customer and the ECX. A port is typically ordered separately from the portal but the results and use are accessed online.

  • Standard port - suitable when fewer connections might be needed per port and fixed connection speed tiers are sufficient. Both port charges (MRC and NRC) and connection charges (MRC) apply.

  • Unlimited port - formerly known as Buyout port, this new package offers unlimited connections at $0 per connection to better support when you need a high number of connections.

  • Virtual circuit (VC) - used for most Layer 2 services using a sub-interface.

  • Connector - primary business object that connects two points together, such as ports or routing instances. A Connector will appear similar to the VC found in Layer 2 services, but is simpler to deploy and has more options based on where it terminates.

  • Routing instance (RI) - the most important component of a Layer 3 service that sets up the necessary elements to peer with the ECX. It serves as the hub for most routing policy and business rules that govern the routing of traffic.

  • Subscription - method in which you get services that are part of a service profile. It includes information such as the required provider-specific technology and authentication, if requested. For Layer 2, this mostly happens in the background. In the context of a Layer 3 service profile, you subscribe your RI to that service profile, then routes are advertised between the two parties in a pre-arranged import-export policy.

  • Service profile - business object that aggregatesOn Enterprise Cloud Exchange (ECX), aggregators are Network Service Providers (NSPs) and Managed Service Providers (MSPs) who provide multi-tenant services. Aggregators are both buyers of ECX service from Equinix and sellers of value-added services over ECX to their end customers. several other components for the purpose of offering services to others to create connections. A service profile is either Layer 2-centric (and built around ports) or Layer 3-centric (built around RIs).

Using these components in basic formats, a Layer 2 solution would look like this:

A Layer 3 solution, end-to-end, is strung together as follows:

Service Level Agreements

The ECX is supported by industry-standard SLAs, including:

  • Service delivery - Once the ports are ordered and provisioned, they will be available on Cloud Exchange Portal (CXP) and APIs for service

  • Availability service level agreement (SLA) - 99.999% when provisioning redundant ports on redundant ECX chassis in a single metro

  • Port Provisioning SLA - up to 10 business days