Digital Realty Launches Services Exchange

    When it comes to application performance in the era of the cloud, the single biggest issue IT organizations need to contend with is network latency. Because of this issue, many IT organizations have taken to deploying their applications as close to a major Internet exchange point as possible.

    Today, Digital Realty announced that it intends to become the latest provider of hosting and networking services to deliver that capability via a Services Exchange unfurled at a MarketplaceLIVE event.

    Sean Iraca, vice president of service enablement for Digital Realty, says using the Services Exchange, an IT organization can set up direct network connections with specific public and private clouds, as well as host applications one network hop away from a major Internet exchange point.

    Developed in collaboration with a U.S. subsidiary of Megaport, Services Exchange will also employ a software-defined network (SDN) fabric created by Megaport to give IT organizations programmable access to hundreds of network services that Megaport makes available via an existing interconnect service.

    “We’re not limiting this to only our network,” says Iraca. “It’s a switch fabric that is fully automated. You’ll be able to bring up a VLANs on the fly.”


    Digital Realty plans to make Services Exchange available through over 24 different data centers located in 15 separate markets by the middle of next year. Access to data centers in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Ashburn, Va., will all be available before the end of this year.

    Most existing data centers operated by internal IT organizations were built before the cloud era. As a result, the location of the data center was usually determined by the cost of the real estate it sat on and the availability of inexpensive power. But in the age of the cloud, the relative distance between a data center and an Internet peering exchange is now of paramount application performance importance. Because of that, more applications are starting to migrate toward hosting service providers that make available co-location services as close to major Internet exchange points as possible.

    While there’s no shortage of networking services options available, the biggest differentiator will more than likely come down to which of these providers gives internal IT organizations the most granular control over the widest number of network services.


    Mike Vizard
    Mike Vizard
    Michael Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist, with nearly 30 years of experience writing and editing about enterprise IT issues. He is a contributor to publications including Programmableweb, IT Business Edge, CIOinsight and UBM Tech. He formerly was editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise, where he launched the company’s custom content division, and has also served as editor in chief for CRN and InfoWorld. He also has held editorial positions at PC Week, Computerworld and Digital Review.

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