Route Servers

MBIX runs 2 route servers. Here we describe their operation, and suggestions for using them to the benefit of your network.

These route servers run BGP, and allow members’ routers to exchange routes with each other more easily than peering with each and every member. They are the implementation of a multi-lateral peering. If you peer with the route servers, you’ll be automatically peering with everyone else who peers with the route servers.

Without the route servers, you would have to configure your router with the IP address and parameters of every other member. Each time a new member joined, you’d have to add that configuration to your router. Most people don’t need that kind of hassle, and choose to use the route-servers instead.

Not all MBIX members have chosen to peer with the route severs, but most have.  The peers page will confirm their route server peering status.

What are the IP addresses of the route servers?

The route servers are dual-stacked on IPv4 and IPv6.  You should peer with both of them, for redundancy.  The route servers are maintained with up-to-date software, and will go down for maintenance, but only one at a time, with 24 hours of stability between outages.

  • IPv4 RS1:
  • IPv4 RS2:
  • IPv6 RS1: 2001:504:26::1:6395:11/64
  • IPv6 RS2: 2001:504:26::1:6395:12/64

What AS number do the route servers use?

The route servers use AS16395, which is the MBIX Peering ASN. Note that the route servers DO NOT insert their own AS into the path. You will see the routes the same as if you established direct peering to the remote AS. (See configuration examples for tips on configuring your router)

What routes should I send the route servers?

You should send all the routes that originate from your AS, and the routes of your customers. Customers are ASes that you provide transit to as a service. You should not advertise the routes of your private peers, or you will accidentally provide transit to them. This applies equally to IPv4 and IPv6.

What routes will I receive from the route servers?

You will receive all the routes that are shared by the other members of MBIX. This applies equally to IPv4 and IPv6, MBIX is fully dual-stack

Other ISPs send their routes and customer routes to the route server. The route server then echos these routes back to you, preserving the BGP next-hop value.

Do the route servers do any filtering?

See dynamic document: Pelican Route Server Configuration

Yes, we do filter routes. Starting October 2018, our new Pelican route servers are doing fully automated filtering.

We pull data from IRR and RPKI.  We determine your AS-SET by querying PeeringDB for your ASN..

The route servers filter on:

  • Prefix match
    • For example:; or 2605:e200::/32.
    • All your prefixes must be in IRR or RPKI
  • AS Path
    • List includes you and your customers

Is there a looking glass?

Sure, the MBIX Looking Glass is

Use the looking glass to examine the best path MBIX has for a specific route, or examine which routes your AS is sending to the route servers.

What about LOCAL_PREF?

We strongly recommend setting the LOCAL_PREF for routes received from MBIX higher than routes received from your transit providers.

Giving MBIX routes a higher LOCAL_PREF will cause your router to prefer sending data via MBIX, rather than your costly transit providers.

Manipulating the LOCAL_PREF is often done with a route-map, see the Cisco config tips, below.

What type of device (hardware/software) are the route servers?

The route servers are 1U AMD64 servers systems. They run Debian GNU/Linux 12, and an updated version of the BIRD 2 – Internet Routing Daemon.  We have 2 active, and 1 spare, all connected into the peering fabric with 10G-LR optics.

Got any tips for configuring my Cisco IOS router to work well with the route servers?

See full instruction: Cisco BGP Config Tips

Sure, here we go:

  • Disable spanning tree on your port/VLAN. The MBIX switchport will be disabled for 30 minutes if it receives a BPDU from your equipment
  • no bgp enforce-first-as – use this option in your ‘router bgp xxxx’ command to allow your cisco to accept a route from the route sever AS16395 without seeing AS16395 in the AS_PATH
  • apply a route-map to increase local preference. If the localpref of the routes you receive from your transit provider is 100, set the localpref to 200 on routes received from MBIX
    • neighbor route-map LOCALPREF-mbix in
    • route-map LOCALPREF-ix permit 10
      set local-preference 200
  • no cdp enable – Disable CDP on the interface facing MBIX