Mirror Image Internet, the Swedish Web caching management specialist (CI No 3,227), is extending the reach of its central caches by teaming up with UK satellite communications company ParallelWeb Ltd. Web content will be delivered from Mirror Image’s servers to the caches of local Internet service providers via ParallelWeb’s satellite data broadcasting system, giving users […]
Mirror Image Internet, the Swedish Web caching management specialist (CI No 3,227), is extending the reach of its central caches by teaming up with UK satellite communications company ParallelWeb Ltd. Web content will be delivered from Mirror Image’s servers to the caches of local Internet service providers via ParallelWeb’s satellite data broadcasting system, giving users access to Web sites without having to traverse the global Internet. The service will initially be available on Eutelsat and Arabsat. The Web caching and proxy server market is growing fast as ISPs and large intranet managers look for a way to bypass heavy traffic on backbone networks to speed up the delivery of information (CI No 3,373). Mirror Image’s central caches act as a second tier above such local caches, offering advanced cache management software, such as the continuous purging of old files, retention of up-to-date cache content and the exclusion of problem sites. Newer services under development include the pre-loading of sites and the blocking of others according to know customer preferences. Mirror Image’s software is based on open industry standards and is compatible with Internet Caching Protocol (ICP) compliant local caches such as the Cisco Systems Inc’s Cache Engine, Netscape Communications Corp’s Proxy Server 3.5, Network Appliance Corp’s NetCache, Novell Inc’s FastCache, Sun Microsystems Inc’s’ Netra and the Vixie Enterprise Web Gateway Interceptor. The company says that, whereas a cache used by a small user base might have a hit rate as low as 30-40%, a central cache which is used by a large number of users can achieve hits rates as high as 70-75%. Mirror Image owns and operates terabyte-capacity central caches in the USA, UK and Sweden. Its London server is used by between 20 and 30 ISPs including Planet Online, the Joint Academic Network, Cable Internet and Imperial College. The company has recently signed joint marketing agreements with both Cisco and Digital Equipment Corp, combining their local proxy servers with its central cache management services. Mirror Image has also licensed its technology to Savvis Communications Corp to carry out a market development trial in the Chicago, St. Louis and Dallas areas. Savvis, which has a nationwide public IP network, offers backbone Internet services in 19 major US metropolitan markets. Mirror Image now has a US operation in Woburn, Massachusetts, headed by David Wu, who was responsible for launching Intel’s ProShare PC videoconferencing product. Beatrice Arnfield.