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Connecting an Entire Island

Bob Nilsson Published 6 Jun 2017

Connecting an Entire Island

“Our Extreme Networks solution is an important piece in providing telecommunications services to everyone on the island. Everything connects to Extreme. The equipment is solid and performs well. Customer support is always responsive and resolves all issues quickly. Overall, we have had a great experience with Extreme.” –  Goswin Bernabela, Networking Coordinator Telefonia Bonairiano NV

How does an Idyllic island in the Leeward Antilles go about reliably connecting all their voice, video, and data? Telefonia Bonairiano NV (TELBO) is the communications and media provider for Bonaire, providing a complete range of innovative services to the island’s businesses and residences. Operating under the jurisdiction of parent company, Bonaire Holding Maatschappij (BHM), which is in turn owned by the Island Government of Bonaire, TELBO is the first Caribbean region provider of leading edge, high quality TV service based on a full IP infrastructure.

Bon-where? Bonaire is the “B” of the A, B, C islands (Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao) just north of Venezuela. With a population of 18,000, Bonaire belongs to the Netherlands. They use the US dollar as their currency, drive on the left-hand side of the road, and have no traffic lights on their streets! Ocean diving is the biggest attraction and most people speak 3-4 languages, including– the native Papiamentu, English, Spanish, and Dutch. The entire island is connected by Extreme Networks – from cellular services, to IP TV, to Internet.

I spoke with TELBO’s Networking Coordinator, Goswin Bernabela, about their network refresh of their customer infrastructure and internal network. As a delighted Extreme Networks customer for more than 10 years, when it came time to upgrade the network to support a 10 Gig backbone enabling more bandwidth, better power consumption, with the opportunity to grow to 40 Gigs, TELBO turned to none other than Extreme. According to Bernabela, “We continued with Extreme because of the great results!”

The upgrade included moving to Extreme’s X670-G2 Series at the core and installing ExtremeManagement to simplify their network management. This allows the TELBO IT staff to run reliable, single-pane-of-glass management for their 12 buildings and two co-locations in Miami and Curacao.

TELBO also purchased ExtremeAnalytics to help them determine what is running where on the network. By working closely with their Extreme Networks Solutions Engineer, Claudio Alexander Valdez, they are able to address and determine and sort good, bad, and undesired traffic on the network.

According to Valdez, “Because we run a complex network, it can be difficult to find security and bandwidth issues. The visibility provided by Extreme helps TELBO easily pinpoint issues and find and correct challenges.”

Bernabela expects that ExtremeAnalytics will allow them to leverage their position as a money maker, and not a money spender, within the company. “We are planning to monitor what the users are running and discover where the bandwidth is going to help with network shaping and design.”

TELBO’s roadmap includes implementing ExtremeControl, so they can start rate-limiting and provide profile-based access to the network to optimize the connections across the island for their 6,000 customers. Future plans also include integrating ExtremeWireless. Stay tuned for more big networking news out if this picturesque island in the Caribbean.

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