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DE-CIX Management GmbH

legal form Company with limited liability
founding 1995
Seat Cologne , GermanyGermanyGermany 
management Harald A. Summa ( Managing Director )

The German Commercial Internet Exchange ( DE-CIX , pronunciation : [ ˈdeːˌkiks ]) is an Internet node in Frankfurt am Main and the largest in the world in terms of data throughput . All national and international DE-CIX activities and companies are brought together under the umbrella of DE-CIX Group AG. Harald A. Summa , Sebastian Seifert and Ivo Ivanov are the board members responsible for global business. The supervisory board of DE-CIX Group AG consists of Felix Höger - former COO & CTO of QSC AG and founder as well as long-time CEO of PIRONET NDH AG as chairman of the supervisory board, Klaus Landefeld, deputy chairman of the board of eco - Verband der Internetwirtschaft e. V. and Rudolf van Megen, chairman of the board of the German ICT & Media Institute eV (GIMI) as well as founder and long-time CEO of SQS Software Quality Systems AG.


The DE- CIX was founded in 1995, among others by Arnold Nipper , and was originally a project of three Internet service providers (ISPs). The eco Verband der Internetwirtschaft e. V. In the meantime, the commercial activities of DE-CIX have been transferred to DE-CIX Management GmbH, based in Cologne , a wholly-owned subsidiary of the eco association.

According to its own information, DE-CIX handles a large part of the German peering traffic and is the fourth Internet node in the world after connected ISPs and the largest Internet node in terms of traffic volume (as of April 2019). In 1999 DE-CIX moved to a new data center operated by Interxion on Hanauer Landstrasse in Frankfurt am Main . In 2012, the technical infrastructure of DE-CIX Frankfurt had a star-shaped topology and is operated by e-shelter , Equinix , Level (3) , ITENOS , Interxion, New Telco , Telecity Group (now Equinix), Global in a total of 32 data centers Switch, Keppel DC, Maincubes and Telehouse distributed in the Frankfurt city area. The largest move in DE-CIX history took place in 2018. Around 15 kilometers of fiber optic cable were laid and the connections of 450 customers migrated during ongoing operations. The new location is on the Kleyerstraße campus in Frankfurt-Gallus.


A 19-inch rack for several switches in DE-CIX (2011)

The distributed switch infrastructure enables ISPs to exchange data for a monthly flat fee that depends on the port size (“ peering ”). Members can be connected via fractional Gigabit Ethernet (0.2 Gbps), Gigabit Ethernet, fractional 10 Gigabit Ethernet (2.5 Gbps), 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports or 100 Gigabit Ethernet ports .

In April 2001 the DE-CIX 2 went into operation in order to solve the space problems in the old data center and to increase the reliability. The new and old locations were connected by fiber optic cables. The increasing Internet traffic and the requirement for further reliability made it necessary to put a third DE-CIX node into operation in January 2004, which was installed at the Telecity Group in Gutleutstrasse in Frankfurt am Main. At all three sites stood until the end of 2006 in each case a switch of the type Cisco Catalyst 6509-NEB-A. Then the switches were replaced by the new TeraScale E1200 from Force10 and a fourth DE-CIX node in Kleyerstrasse was put into operation at the same time. The old Cisco hardware has since been used in the WORK-IX in Hamburg, which is also operated by DE-CIX Management GmbH . In the 1st quarter of 2009, the two Force10 switches in the DE-CIX core network were replaced by Brocade (formerly Foundry Networks ) MLX-32 switches. In order to meet the need for further expansion, from the end of 2009 the TeraScale E1200 was replaced by the ExaScale E1200i from Force10. In April 2013 DE-CIX announced the development of DE-CIX Apollon. This consists of an optical network based on ADVA FSP3000 and Nokia 7950 XRS. The platform offers 100 Gigabit Ethernet ports and has been available since September 1, 2013. At all DE-CIX locations (except UAE-IX in Dubai and Mumbai IX), customer networks are protected from DDoS attacks by blackholing . Since March 21, 2019 - the world's first Internet node - 400 Gigabit Ethernet ports have been offered.

DE-CIX has been using the world's first patch robot since 2018. The machine takes over the plugging of cables fully automatically so that no technicians are required on site to set up new connections. The DE-CIX robot was recognized as the best Internet exchange innovation at the Global Carrier Awards in 2018. According to the operator, around two thirds of the capacity is made available to customers, the rest of the available capacity is used for redundancies and to buffer short-term fluctuations.

Network scheme


The Internet node is housed redundantly in several data centers in Frankfurt am Main . The individual current locations are:

Locations address
(formerly Level 3 Communications)
Kleyerstr. 90, 60326 Frankfurt
Colt Frankfurt 1 60314 Frankfurt
Digital Realty FRA10 Wilhelm-Fay-Str. 24, 65936 Frankfurt
Digital Realty FRA11 Lyonerstr. 28, 60528 Frankfurt
Equinix FR2 Kruppstrasse 121-127, 60388 Frankfurt
Equinix FR4 Lärchenstrasse 110, 65933 Frankfurt
Equinix FR5 Kleyerstr. 90, 60326 Frankfurt
(via MMR)
Equinix FR6 Lärchenstrasse 110, 65933 Frankfurt
Equinix FR7
(formerly TelecityGroup)
Gutleutstrasse 310, 60327 Frankfurt
e-shelter FRA1 Eschborner Landstr. 100, 60489 Frankfurt
e-shelter FRA2 Hanauer Landstrasse 320, 60314 Frankfurt
e-shelter FRA4 Voltastr. 15, 65795 Hattersheim am Main
Global switch Eschborner Landstr. 110, 60489 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA1 Hanauer Landstrasse 302, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA2 Hanauer Landstrasse 304, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA3 Weismüllerstr. 21-23, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA4 Weismüllerstr. 19, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA5 Hanauer Landstrasse 308a, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA6 Hanauer Landstrasse 300a, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA7 Hanauer Landstrasse 296a, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA8 Weismüllerstr. 36, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA9 Weismüllerstr. 25-27, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA10 Weismüllerstr. 38, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA11 Weismüllerstr. 40, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA12 Weismüllerstr. 29-31, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA13 Weismüllerstr. 42, 60314 Frankfurt
Interxion FRA14 Weismüllerstr. 34, 60314 Frankfurt
ITENOS Kleyerstr. 90, 60326 Frankfurt
(MMR BE.16)
Keppel DC Frankfurt 1 (KDC FRA 1) Heinrich-Lanz-Allee 47, 60437 Frankfurt
KPN Kleyerstr. 90, 60326 Frankfurt
maincubes FRA01 Goethering 29, 63067 Offenbach
NewTelco Rebstockerstr. 25–31, 60326 Frankfurt
(Building B, Room B.1.10)
Telehouse Kleyerstr. 79, 60326 Frankfurt
(Building I and K)

In addition to Frankfurt, DE-CIX currently operates exchange points in Berlin (DE-CIX powered by BCIX ), Düsseldorf, Hamburg and Munich. Outside Germany, DE-CIX operates Internet nodes in Dallas, Dubai (UAE-IX), Istanbul, Madrid, Marseille, Mumbai (Mumbai-IX powered by DE-CIX), New York and Palermo. In autumn 2018, DE-CIX announced the opening of its location in Lisbon. The company has also been represented in Moscow (MSK-IX powered by DE-CIX) since October 2018. In the first quarter of 2019 DE-CIX announced the expansion of its presence in India. The joint venture DE-CIX Interwire Internet Services Ltd. Open three new locations in Delhi, Calcutta and Chennai under the DE-CIX brand.

Data rate

In January 2019, more than 850 internet service providers and other organizations from more than 70 countries were connected to DE-CIX, including practically all major internet service providers. The data throughput exceeded the mark of 2 terabits per second for the first time in September 2012 , in April 2015 the mark of 4 terabits per second and in December 2017 over 6 terabits per second. On September 19, 2019, the 7 terabits per second were exceeded for the first time; on December 11, 2019, the data throughput rose to over 8 terabits per second for the first time. According to the annual report, DE-CIX had a connected customer capacity of over 45 Tbit / s at the end of 2018.

Due to the general restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic , data traffic at DE-CIX increased by a further 10% from the beginning / mid-March 2020, the video communication area even increased by 50%, the gaming area by 25%, and there was Increases in social media views and VPN connections .

Data throughput at peak times
Throughput date
16 Gbit / s Dec 2003
23 Gbit / s Aug 2004
49 Gbit / s Oct 2005
90 Gbit / s Nov 2006
300 Gbit / s Dec 2007
407 Gbit / s May 2008
800 Gbit / s July 2009
1.2 Tbit / s Aug 2010
1.4 Tbit / s March 2011
2.0 Tbit / s Sep 2012
2.6 Tbit / s Oct. 2013
3.0 Tbit / s Jan. 2014
3.4 Tbit / s March 2014
3.9 Tbit / s Jan. 2015
4.0 Tbit / s Apr. 2015
4.4 Tbit / s Aug 2015
4.5 Tbit / s Sep 2015
5.0 Tbit / s Dec 2015
5.6 Tbit / s Dec 2016
5.88 Tbit / s Sep 2017
6.027 Tbit / s Dec 2017
6.876 Tbit / s Feb. 2019
7.1 Tbit / s Sep 2019
8.1 Tbit / s Dec 2019
9.1 Tbit / s March 2020
Average data throughput
Throughput date
400 Gbit / s July 2009
682 Gbit / s Aug 2010
900 Gbit / s Jan. 2011
1.2 Tbit / s Aug 2012
1.6 Tbit / s Nov 2013

Far less traffic was measurable for the new Internet protocol IPv6 . In March 2012, an average of just 0.8 Gigabit / s of IPv6 traffic ran over the DE-CIX, which corresponds to 0.088% of the IPv4 traffic. After the World IPv6 Launch Day on June 6, 2012, at peak times (mostly around 9:00 p.m.), the DE-CIX already ran 3.5 gigabit / s. In May 2013, an average of 8 Gbit / s ran over the DE-CIX. More recent statistics on the IPv6 share are not available.

Telecommunications intelligence

In the course of the revelations in the years 2013–2015 on the work of the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Federal Intelligence Service (BND), the DE-CIX came increasingly into focus, as it was assumed that the NSA was divulging data there directly. However, this is "technically impossible", according to the DE-CIX operators. However, it is likely that the NSA, with the help of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act , will oblige American network providers that are connected to the DE-CIX to carry out the surveillance measures.

Klaus Landefeld, Advisory Board of DE-CIX Management GmbH, reported to the NSA investigation committee on March 26, 2015 about the practice of the BND on DE-CIX since 2009, since after the end of Operation Eikonal in 2008, the BND new options for monitoring the Internet was looking for. Landefeld explained that the BND is not only interested in lines outside of Germany, such as in the Arab region, but also in lines within Germany, on which over 90 percent of traffic is protected by fundamental rights . One could “absolutely not selectively” decide what “is German or not” on the Internet. The 20 percent rule, according to which intelligence services are allowed to divert one fifth of the line capacity, would not actually be practiced, Landefeld said. The providers lay out their lines in such a way that they are usually only used to 30 or 40 percent. With the 20 percent rule, you end up with 50 to 60 percent of the through traffic, which is not in accordance with the law.

The Federal Chancellery is said to have intervened several times and prevented both the G 10 Commission and the Federal Network Agency from investigating the wiretapping.

Lawsuit against the federal government and constitutional complaint

The operating company of the Internet node DE-CIX sued the Federal Administrative Court in Leipzig against the monitoring measures of the BND, since it considered the legality of the measures to be inadmissible. In an expert report prepared for DE-CIX Management GmbH, the ex-President of the Federal Constitutional Court and professor emeritus for public law, Hans-Jürgen Papier , came to the conclusion that the BND's mass surveillance at Internet nodes was illegal. According to the paper, the BND can neither legally nor actually comply with laws and "disregards and exceeds" the principles of the Basic Law . DE-CIX Management GmbH then filed a lawsuit against the Federal Republic of Germany because, among other things, the amendment to the BND law had exacerbated the problem. The complaint is also based on the above-mentioned report and the results of the NSA committee of inquiry and is against the claims by the BND in the context of strategic telecommunications surveillance .

The Ministry of the Interior (BMI) had at the request of the BND a limitation of the telecommunications secrecy based on § 5 Article 10 Act arranged (G 10). The BND sent the DE-CIX Management GmbH excerpts of this order in a letter dated August 26, 2016, named it as the obligated telecommunications provider that it would use packet-switched transmission paths and asked for further action. With its action, on which the first instance competent Federal Administrative Court has to decide, DE-CIX Management GmbH asserts that data is collected from a purely domestic network node and that purely domestic telecommunications traffic is also evaluated, although Section 5 G 10 is only used to monitor international ones , d. H. authorize cross-border telecommunications relationships. In addition, the BND collects the data traffic of a certain port completely without the statutory quantitative limitation of 20 percent. Finally, the legal authorization of § 5 G 10 is unconstitutional; In addition, the disadvantage of foreigners violates EU law prohibitions on discrimination .

On May 30, 2018, the case was heard before the Federal Administrative Court; In the first and last instance, on the action brought by DE-CIX Management GmbH, it decided that the Federal Ministry of the Interior can oblige it to cooperate in the implementation of strategic telecommunications monitoring measures by the BND. However, DE-CIX Management GmbH does not accept the judgment of the Federal Administrative Court on the legality of BND espionage. It sees the questions raised as not being clarified and legal protection at risk. "We are very sure about our trip to Karlsruhe," said Klaus Landefeld, supervisory board member of the management company, opposite heise online . It is important to submit the numerous legal questions unresolved by the Federal Administrative Court to the Federal Constitutional Court . According to the DE-CIX management, the judgment raises questions about effective legal protection. Citizens without the necessary detailed knowledge could not demonstrate that they were affected by the BND surveillance in Frankfurt. The obligated companies in turn are not allowed to assert the rights of the citizens.

On May 19, 2020, the Federal Constitutional Court announced its ruling in the BND's Strategic Abroad-Abroad Telecommunications Enlightenment case and decided that the surveillance of telecommunications by foreigners abroad by the Federal Intelligence Service is bound by the fundamental rights of the Basic Law and according to the current form the basis of authorization violates the fundamental right of telecommunications secrecy (Article 10 (1) GG) and the freedom of the press (Article 5 (1) sentence 2 GG). This applies to both the collection and processing of the data and the transmission of the data obtained in this way to other bodies as well as the cooperation with other foreign intelligence services.

Disruptions and failures

  • April 16, 2003 - Two switches had to be restarted due to problems
  • December 15, 2003 - Failure of the Gigabit Ethernet modules in DE-CIX2
  • October 17, 2005 - Partial failure due to a software problem
  • June 8, 2010 - Massive disruption of provider networks due to an Ethernet loop on a port of the new Force10 switch
  • August 13, 2011 - Several connections to other network operators disrupted
  • August 3, 2012 - Fault at a core switch leads to massive problems with the connected network operators
  • 1./2. September 2012 - A fault in the core02 switch leads to high packet loss
  • 27./28. September 2013 - Short-term disruption around midnight
  • 9/10 April 2018 - Power failure at Interxion in the FRA5 data center (also affected DE-CIX6)

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Imprint - DE-CIX .
  2. New corporate structure at the world's leading Internet node operator DE-CIX. Retrieved July 2, 2019 .
  3. Short profile DE-CIX Management GmbH , DE-CIX press releases, accessed on October 11, 2013
  4. Ranking of the worldwide Internet nodes, sorted according to connected ISPs (English), (as of April 2019)
  5. Ranking of the worldwide Internet nodes, sorted by traffic (English), (as of April 2019)
  6. Availability Matrix DE-CIX Frankfurt In: Retrieved May 12, 2014.
  7. ^ Network structure: Where the German Internet lives , Zeit Online from November 29, 2012
  8. First new DE-CIX Core Switch implemented successfully. (PDF) In: DE-CIX February Newsletter. DE-CIX Management GmbH Frankfurt, February 2009, pp. 2–3 , archived from the original on January 4, 2012 ; accessed on January 16, 2014 (English).
  9. German Internet node DE-CIX: Peering with 100 GBit / s heise Netze from April 10, 2013
  10. ^ Blackholing - DE-CIX. In: Retrieved December 5, 2017 .
  11. DE-CIX first Internet Exchange worldwide to offer 400-Gigabit Ethernet access technology. Retrieved April 3, 2019 .
  12. Inga Janović: De-Cix in Frankfurt: On Internet hub for the first time a robot pulling the strings . ISSN  0174-4909 ( [accessed July 2, 2019]).
  13. Global Carrier Awards 2018: DE-CIX's patch robot chosen as “Best Internet Exchange Innovation”. Retrieved July 2, 2019 .
  14. a b Eva-Maria Weiß: Video conferences, VPNs, gaming: More data traffic on the DE-CIX. In: heise online. March 18, 2020, accessed April 17, 2020 .
  15. Enabled sites - DE-CIX. DE-CIX Frankfurt locations in operation. In: Retrieved December 5, 2017 .
  16. Locations - DE-CIX. In: Retrieved December 5, 2017 .
  17. DE-CIX opens new Internet Exchange in Lisbon. Retrieved July 2, 2019 .
  18. Interconnecting Moscow and Frankfurt: DE-CIX and MSK-IX sign agreement on strategic partnership. Retrieved July 2, 2019 .
  19. DE-CIX expands presence in India: New locations in Delhi, Calcutta and Chennai. Retrieved July 2, 2019 .
  20. Record on DE-CIX: 2 terabits per second , heise online from September 22, 2012
  21. DE-CIX achieves data throughput of over 4 Tbit / s for the first time , from April 30, 2015
  22. ^ New IX World Record in Frankfurt: 6,027 Terabits Peak Traffic , DE-CIX from December 6, 2017
  23. a b Cracked over 7 terabits per second: New data world record at DE-CIX in Frankfurt. September 20, 2019, accessed September 21, 2019 .
  24. a b DE-CIX breaks data world record again: Over 8 terabits per second at the Frankfurt Internet hub. December 12, 2019, accessed December 12, 2019 .
  25. DE-CIX publishes business figures 2018: Strong global sales and customer growth characterize internationalization. Accessed August 31, 2019 .
  26. a b c Update DE-CIX @ EIX RIPE 51 Presentation from October 13, 2005 on DE-CIX at RIPE 51, page 4 (pdf; 1.0 MB)
  27. a b c DECIX Update RIPE57 (PDF; 1.0 MB) Presentation from October 2008 on DE-CIX at RIPE 57, page 2
  28. a b DE-CIX halves prices for small providers , from July 13, 2009
  29. a b Internet node: More than 1 TBit / s on DE-CIX , from August 31, 2010
  30. a b DE-CIX: Internet traffic will grow by a factor of 20 by 2015 , heise online from January 28, 2011
  31. a b Record on DE-CIX: 2 terabits per second , heise online from September 22, 2012
  32. DE-CIX - News. In: Retrieved November 17, 2013 .
  33. DE-CIX - News. In: Retrieved January 25, 2014 .
  34. DE-CIX. In: Archived from the original on March 23, 2014 ; accessed on March 23, 2014 .
  35. DE-CIX. In: Retrieved April 30, 2015 .
  36. 4.4 Terabit / s peak traffic and 16.5 Terabits connected customer capacity. In: Retrieved August 25, 2015 .
  37. New milestone at DE-CIX Frankfurt: 4.5 Terabits per second peak traffic. In: Retrieved September 17, 2015 .
  38. Peak Data Traffic at DE-CIX Breaks 5 Terabit per Second Record. In: Retrieved December 9, 2015 .
  39. DE-CIX, the world's largest Internet hub: All signs point to growth. In: DE-CIX. February 14, 2017, accessed June 26, 2017 .
  40. Statistics - DE-CIX. In: DE-CIX. September 13, 2017, accessed on September 13, 2017 .
  41. Andrijan Möcker: 5.88 TBit / s: record on DE-CIX cracked - heise online. In: September 13, 2017. Retrieved September 13, 2017 .
  42. Peak New IX World Record in Frankfurt: 6,027 terabits per second peak traffic. In: Retrieved January 8, 2018 .
  43. ^ DE-CIX Frankfurt traffic statistics - DE-CIX. Retrieved February 22, 2019 .
  44. Highest jump ever: DE-CIX Frankfurt reaches 9.1 Tbps. Retrieved March 11, 2020 .
  45. Monthly statistics PNG graphics. In: Archived from the original on November 17, 2013 ; Retrieved November 17, 2013 .
  46. Thomas Thiel : NSA espionage at the Frankfurt network node? - The more convenient way to get to the data streams. FAZ, July 3, 2013, accessed on August 14, 2015 .
  47. Klaus Landefeld in the Secret Service Investigation Committee: How the BND has been tapping the DE-CIX Internet node since 2009., March 30, 2015, accessed March 31, 2015 .
  48. ^ NSA committee: "BND has a free hand in Internet surveillance"., March 26, 2015, accessed on March 26, 2015 .
  49. ^ NSA committee: "DE-CIX raises serious allegations of BND wiretapping"., March 26, 2015, accessed March 26, 2015 .
  50. DE-CIX operator wants to sue against BND surveillance. April 23, 2015, accessed April 23, 2015 .
  51. Guest contribution: Ex-President of the Federal Constitutional Court: "BND access to Internet nodes such as DE-CIX is generally illegal" - In: August 5, 2016. Retrieved August 5, 2016 .
  52. Professor Dr. Hans-Jürgen Papier: Restrictions on freedom of telecommunications by the BND at data exchange points (PDF file)
  53. Stefan Krempl: Constitutional lawyer: BND data taps at network nodes are highly illegal - heise online. In: August 6, 2016. Retrieved August 7, 2016 .
  54. Press release DE-CIX - Information on the lawsuit against the Federal Republic of Germany. September 16, 2016, accessed April 11, 2018 .
  55. ^ NSA scandal and BND surveillance: Internet node De-CIX sues the Federal Republic. September 16, 2016, accessed September 16, 2016 .
  56. Procedural information on 6 A 3.16 - Federal Administrative Court. In: Retrieved May 29, 2018 .
  57. Ronen Steinke: Operator of the world's largest Internet node accuses BND of breaking the law. In: . May 28, 2018. Retrieved May 29, 2018 .
  58. Press release No. 38/2018 - Federal Administrative Court. In: May 30, 2018, accessed May 31, 2018 .
  59. Oliver Bünte: Court judgment: BND may continue to tap Internet nodes De-CIX - heise online. In: May 31, 2018, accessed May 31, 2018 .
  60. Internet hub De-Cix: Court approves BND eavesdropping practice. In: May 31, 2018, accessed May 31, 2018 .
  61. Stefan Krempl: BND surveillance: De-CIX operator wants to go to the Federal Constitutional Court - heise online. In: May 31, 2018, accessed May 31, 2018 .
  62. Foreign-to-foreign telecommunications intelligence under the BND Act violates the basic rights of the Basic Law in its current form. In: BVerfG. May 19, 2020, accessed July 3, 2020 .
  63. Internet coped well with DE-CIX failure , heise online of April 16, 2003
  64. Switch failure at Internet node DE-CIX , heise online from December 15, 2003
  65. Partial failure at the DE-CIX Internet node without serious effects , heise online from October 17, 2005
  66. DE-CIX: Switch error disrupted provider networks , heise online from June 8, 2010
  67. DE-CIX on Twitter. In: Twitter. Retrieved April 9, 2018 .