Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Google Fiber Partially Reverses Server Ban

timothy posted about 9 months ago | from the read-write-tops-read-only dept.

Networking 169

Lirodon writes "After being called out by the Electronic Frontier Foundation for banning the loosely-defined use of "servers" on its Fiber service, Google appears to have changed its tune, and now allows 'personal, non-commercial use of servers that complies with this AUP is acceptable, including using virtual private networks (VPN) to access services in your home and using hardware or applications that include server capabilities for uses like multi-player gaming, video-conferencing, and home security.'"

cancel ×

169 comments

server ban? (1)

KraxxxZ01 (2445360) | about 9 months ago | (#45131043)

There was a server ban? What for?

Re:server ban? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131101)

Same as most ISPs have and for the same reason. The big difference was google did a lot of fighting specifically against that kinda thing.

Haven't actually read the new TOS, but from summary this sounds reasonable enough.

Realistically this is usually how this ends up actually working with most ISPs anyway. I've yet to hear of an ISP cutting off someones connection for running a minecraft server.

It still contrasts the "bit are bits" argument, but my pragmatic side is willing to accept that we may need an artificial tier in there to keep prices low for non-business users.

Re:server ban? (2)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about 9 months ago | (#45131145)

I think server bans started back when everyone and his brother starting hosting porn sites and killing what used to be very limited bandwidth. Not as big a problem these days, but I can see why there needs to be some limitation. Otherwise they might need to start charging for usage.

OTOH, if you do host a web page, I bet Google will have no problem indexing i, and showing Ads along side search result hits......

Re:server ban? (5, Informative)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about 9 months ago | (#45131331)

It's just boilerplate legal speak put into the contracts. It was never meant to ban what they are explicitly excluding now, it was just put in to differentiated between commercial and residential service. They wanted a line in the contract to throw at you if you abused to the service for commercial use, so far as I know no one was ever booted by their ISP for running a VPN or hosting a multi-player game (though occasionally their networks settings made it difficult to do things).

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131475)

The bandwidth is asymmetrical for most cable modems; typically the return spectrum for a CATV system is 5-40 MHz (with anything below about 12 MHz being basically unusable) and the downstream spectrum is much larger from 54 MHz to 1 GHz. This is the reason that servers are frowned upon from your local ISP.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132261)

Technical blah blah blah, the upstream to downstream ratios enforced via caps with every cable ISP I've ever seen don't reflect the technical limitations of the network. Modern DOCSIS 3 modems are only slightly asymetric yet the ISPs sell plans like 100/5 because the idea that any old user can start running their own private youtube scares the crap out of the content industry.

Re:server ban? (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 9 months ago | (#45132087)

While I don't know if it was for the same reason everywhere I was helping out at an ISP when the first server bans were instituted and the reason they did it was guys were running Quake and other FPS servers and pretty much killing the bandwidth for everybody. If they ran a popular game server even when they were down it was getting pings up the ying yang from guys trying to hook up and the infrastructure, at least where I was at, simply couldn't handle it.

Re:server ban? (5, Interesting)

SirGarlon (845873) | about 9 months ago | (#45131149)

I've yet to hear of an ISP cutting off someones connection for running a minecraft server.

Maybe so, but Comcast cut off my friend for running a low-volume mail server. The definition of "server" is intentionally left vague in the TOS. That allows the ISPs to single out users for any reason they want, without having to be specific or consistent.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132577)

Billions of spam messages are sent through insecure mail servers run by idiots on residential connections. I'm glad it got shut down.

Re:server ban? (1)

omnichad (1198475) | about 9 months ago | (#45132801)

Kind of pointless these days to run a mail server on a consumer connection anyway. No major email delivery system trusts IP's that are known to be dynamically assigned (easily determined by reverse DNS patterns).

Re:server ban? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45133025)

The "unlimited" bandwidth isn't really unlimited. It's unlimited until you try to actually use it for one of these revolutionary new purposes for which it's touted. When you do that, you're by definition 0.1%, so you're "abusing," and they cut you off.

People should stop demanding unlimited bandwidth. It's better to have an explicitly stated cap, a price for overages that's fair (ie, it shouldn't be cheaper to buy a second connection with a second cap when you go over your first one), and then should be purely neutral, allowing anything, even hosting porn. I hope people would do more interesting things with it than host porn, but as Chomsky says, you're either in favour of freedom of speech for views you oppose, or you're not in favour of freedom of speech. It should not be the ISP's business what people do with their connections. It shouldn't even be their business whether the use is "commercial" or not. It should not be possible for them to discriminate in price based on the content of your communications, full stop.

The FCC, both enforcement and "broadband plans," have really failed us here.

I also had high hopes for Google since they have so many supposedly-empowered hard-core geeks working for them, but it seems the geeks are not in charge any more. They're acting more like wal-mart, cynically pandering to hopeless masses.

Re:server ban? (4, Interesting)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about 9 months ago | (#45131151)

It still contrasts the "bit are bits" argument, but my pragmatic side is willing to accept that we may need an artificial tier in there to keep prices low for non-business users.

I don't. Google's wholesale cost for ip transit is probably around $6 per terabyte - wholesale cost was about $12 a year ago and its been falling by 50% for the last 4-5 years.

If they are worried about losing money, then set a threshold like 5TB/month and then start charging wholesale plus minimum necessary mark-up for anything over that.

Re:server ban? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131249)

You sound like you don't know what you are talking about because wholesale suppliers typically charge per the amount of bandwidth available, not the amount actually downloaded. For example a 1Mbps link of UNCONTENDED bandwidth might cost $400 per month, regardless of whether it is utilised or not. It is then up to the ISP to share it among all their customers at a ratio that is not noticeable slow. To Limit the link from being saturated by all customers using it at once they put in certain restrictions designed to reduce usage such as download and/or upload quotas, P2P throttling or business server use, unless they pay more to reflect that more usage would cost them more in backhaul so that other users are not bought down.

The technology they provide could very easily support a high-bandwidth server that pulls a constant 1Mbps+ in network utilisation, and Google would need to increase their backhaul by that 1Mbps+ so that other users are not affected, because nobody else can use that 1Mbps while that connection is being sustained.

Re:server ban? (1)

shaitand (626655) | about 9 months ago | (#45131421)

"suppliers typically charge per the amount of bandwidth available, not the amount actually downloaded"

Yes.

"For example a 1Mbps link of UNCONTENDED bandwidth might cost $400 per month, regardless of whether it is utilised or not."

On average it is more like $5/MB, for Google much much much less. You could manage to pay $400 for 2MB if you were at the absolute bottom of the purchasing scale.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45133131)

Retail just crossed $1/mbit assuming at least 10gb and is closer to $0.60/mbit at wholesale(think Netflix). Projected to be about $0.4/mbit next year and $0.2/mbit in 2 years. That's for transit. Once you include peering and CDNs, the price drops a lot. Transit is about routing around the world, peering and CDNs is about better efficiency and data locality.

About 50% of current bandwidth consumed is Netflix, YouTube, and FaceBook. You can peer with any of them for free, ignoring infrastructure costs. The main point of peering is that total costs are less than transit for both peers.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45133145)

what the fuck? Where are you getting $400/mbit? Put down the crack pipe. Reasonable prices four years ago were like $3/mbit with 1gbit/s commit (meaning you pay at least $3k/mo) from level3. And that's transit, ie the "send to eyeballs" price. The price for eyeballs to receive is lower.

Please, back up these numbers. Maybe 1gbit/s "for real" does cost more than gfiber, but people are throwing around some crazy prices here.

$6/tbit also seems crazy. Please state what company quoted the price, when, and what the whole deal is. I don't think "uncontended" is a term of this art. It is just made-up speculation on your part, no? "Cogent" is a term of art, since they are (or used to be) somewhat shitty. I realize I didn't state all these things myself, but I'm just saying you're clearly definitely crazy. I don't have info that meets my own standards. And please be clear whether you mean bits or bytes, since we're talking about consumer stuff here, and they're accustomed to tools that read in "K per second" and such.

Re:server ban? (1)

mic0e (2740501) | about 9 months ago | (#45131469)

Do you have reliable sources for that number?

Re:server ban? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131835)

Do you have reliable sources for that number?

No he doesn't, because there are no reliable sources. Any time you go out to purchase bandwidth you sit down and talk to a sales rep from the company who you're looking to buy from, you tell them what you're looking for, when, and where, and they prepare a quote for you.
The actual cost of the bandwidth varies a LOT, based on a wide variety of factors. What's the physical distance between endpoints? Are you buying dark fiber? An ethernet circuit? A wave circuit? Do you want protection? What kind of uptime/SLA do you require? Perhaps you're buying more than one circuit, if so maybe you're asking for each to have a diverse path. Are you picking these up at co-location facilities, or do you need them run all the way out to a data center? Are you adding to an existing bundle, or is this all completely new? How long of a contract term do you want?
The sales rep takes all that, looks at how much bandwidth they have to sell, looks at their upcoming plans for adding their own capacity, looks at competition, and gives you a number.

I've seen a single copper T1 go for twice what an OC-192 sold for, due to differences in SLA, geography, distance, and contract length. Anybody who tries to just tell you that fiber costs "$X" is either bullshitting you or simply doesn't know what they're talking about.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131773)

Transit is not calculated in data, but in 95th percentile burst of mbits, but your number is "close" for most Tier2/3 Customers. Whole sale transit is about $0.60/mbit. If you want to peer at a local IX, you can purchase a 100gb/s port for about $5k/month, plus your own cost to get fiber to the IX and your own equipment at the IX and the colo for your equipment. That's about 61petabytes of data per month that could be transferred over a $5k port, assuming maxed 24/7. That never happens.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131263)

ISP peering agreements meant that you make money on data that ends up on your network and pay up for data going to another network

having users run a server when they bought a service sold as downloading data meant that you would pay too much to other network operators to send data to them

Home user uploads (1)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45131409)

Uploads that a home user is expected to make, such as pictures to Flickr or Picasa or videos to Dailymotion or YouTube, still run up a sending bill.

Re:Home user uploads (1)

PIBM (588930) | about 9 months ago | (#45132301)

But far less than sending all those same photos and videos directly to your friends and family..

Re:Home user uploads (1)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45133173)

If each photo is viewed at least once on average, serving them from an actual server uses less data transfer volume. But if most of the photos end up never viewed, serving them from home uses less data transfer volume.

Re:server ban? (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about 9 months ago | (#45131143)

so they can sell business access at more expensive price. you didn't seriously think that they were just acting as a dumb pipe providing you bandwidth to use as you see fit?

though nowadays when actual definitions between server and client can be a bit murky it's a bit finicky. playing certain games online? well, you may or you may not be a server..

another reason is that they can cut off people who actually use the bandwidth, just because they advertise xx MB/s doesn't really mean they're prepared to provide it. if they had a hard limit on transfers they would need to divulge you with that information and then you would know what you're buying. much better when it's all murky and the customers have to keep second guessing.

Re:server ban? (2)

Arker (91948) | about 9 months ago | (#45131339)

It's not "nowadays" it was baked into the internet from day one. It's a peer-to-peer network where it's expected that a node may appear as a server in one context and a client in the next. These clauses are only written into ISP contracts with an eye to forcing residential customers who generate 'too much' traffic to pay more for business, but once that tool is there in the contract it's only a matter of time before it is used more generally. And it makes no sense. They should just define specifically what the limits of the service is instead of writing in nebulous language about servers that could mean anything a lawyer wants them to mean.

Re:server ban? (2)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about 9 months ago | (#45131397)

They should just define specifically what the limits of the service is instead of writing in nebulous language about servers that could mean anything a lawyer wants them to mean.

That right there is the whole thing in a nutshell.

On the other hand, I'm a little bit sympathetic to "make the thing first, then work out the details" because if I had to hammer out every detail, every contingency of the things I do before I do them, I'd never get anything done.

However, when you get the size of Google and have that much of a bigfoot-effect from everything you do, there is a fairly substantial responsibility to define parameters. Because other people depend on you.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131455)

On the other hand, I'm a little bit sympathetic to "make the thing first, then work out the details" because if I had to hammer out every detail, every contingency of the things I do before I do them, I'd never get anything done.

In this case, working out every detail could be done as simple as "25 Mbit", rather than "100 Mbit, but no servers, no torrents, no downloads, no anything that might get you near 100 Mbit".

no, 100 Mbit at a time , but not all the time (3, Interesting)

raymorris (2726007) | about 9 months ago | (#45132279)

It's not a matter of 100 Mbps or 25 Mbps.
You can download something at 100 Mbps and in ten seconds you'll be done. Your neighbor can then use that SAME 100 Mbps of capacity for a few seconds. So you, your neighbor, and 98 other people all get 100 Mbps when you want it. At 100 Mbps, it takes you a lot longer to read a web page than it does to load it, and a lot longer to listen to a song than to download it. You use zero Mbps when you're sleeping, at work, running errands, cooking dinner - overall you use the bandwidth about 1% of the time.

Compare that to if eBay connected their servers to Google fiber connections. Servers would be using the bandwidth all the time. It couldn't be shared with neighbors, so Google would need to add dedicated capacity just for those servers. That costs alot more to have it all to yourself versus sharing with 99 other people.

Re:server ban? (1)

msauve (701917) | about 9 months ago | (#45132595)

Server/client is an arbitrary distinction. For example: An X "server" is the keyboard/mouse/display, and the "client" is the application. Exactly the opposite is where a web browser is a "client" talking to a web "server."

Re:server ban? (1)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about 9 months ago | (#45131875)

no, they're acting as a dumb pipe so you can use bandwidth for more youtube and gmail and all that other stuff. also, instead of just recording your actions on some websites, they can record your actions 24x7 and link it to a real person, not just an online profile. profit!

they provide it to browse ebay, not BE ebay. share (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about 9 months ago | (#45132171)

They provide X Mbps for a few seconds at a time.
For example, a page on eBay might be 5 Mb and take one second to load, that's 5 Mbps. When you're not loading a page, another customer is using that bandwidth. A residential user might be downloading 1% of the time, so 50Mbps of capacity serves 100 users at about 50 Mbps.

On the other hand, a popular server is serving customers approximately 100% of the time. No-one else can share that bandwidth since the server is constantly using it. Therefore, server bandwidth costs about 100 times as much as residential bandwidth, simply because the server is using.it all the time so it can't be shared.

Re:they provide it to browse ebay, not BE ebay. sh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132903)

Therefore, server bandwidth costs about 100 times as much as residential bandwidth

Not when you purchase in bulk. 1gb will run you about $1,000, 10gb about $2,000 and 100gb about $5,000 when you bring your own infrastructure. That's $50 per 1gb of bandwidth. If you want to purchase a 1gb link to your local Tier 1, that will cost you about $6,000, but they do all the work.

Bandwidth is cheap, infrastructure is expensive. Modern infrastructure can support more bandwidth than there is demand. Most of the Internet backbone is darkfiber. It was placed because of bandwidth scares from around 2000, but it turns out that technology has been keeping up with or even outpacing demand for fiber. Copper and WIFI are entirely different beasts and are expensive because the infrastructure has a hard time keeping up with demand. Copper is about to hit its physical limit and wifi is naturally noisy. They already have fully working prototypes of throw-away cheap fiber optics that can handle 1tb/s+ speeds. It's commercially ready, just requires major retooling. Get ready for a fiber BOOM.

The current state-of-the-art is routers that can support 1pb/s of layer3 routing with 400gb/s non-blocking ports and will support 1tb/s non-blocking ports in the future, and photonic integrated circuits can can multiplex any combination of 1gb-400gb ports to allow a maximum bandwidth of 8tb/s over a single fiber, using already in the ground "normal" industry standard long haul fiber, with no repeaters or re-generators for about 680km.

I'm still trying to wrap my head around 500 non-blocking 1tb/s ports on a single router. And it consumes 8x less power per mbit than their prior generation.

Re:server ban? (2)

Vanderhoth (1582661) | about 9 months ago | (#45131157)

It was probably thrown in by lawyers that don't know the difference between a web server and a file server. My ISP has a similar clause, that I mostly ignore. My wife and I don't generate enough traffic to my home servers to even make a blip. What the ISPs are concerned with are people having commercial servers generating massive amounts of traffic and money, but the people running the servers are paying the residential rate instead of the much more expensive commercial rates. Essentially the ISP wants a cut of any money someone could be generating from a home server for the use of the extra bandwidth (that wouldn't be allocated otherwise).

Re:server ban? (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 9 months ago | (#45131247)

I often wonder why anybody would want to run a commercial business venture off a home connection. With all the other options out there, like shared hosting, VPS, cloud servers, rented private servers, and renting racks in a proper datacenter, I wonder if there is even a point where somebody thinks it would be a good idea to host a commercial server out of their house. Sure people used to do it back in the earlier days of the internet, but currently I can't see any reason why somebody would want to do this.

Re:server ban? (2)

Vanderhoth (1582661) | about 9 months ago | (#45131485)

I often wonder why anybody would want to run a commercial business venture off a home connection.

Probably not intentionally. I have a friend that started up a small consulting business in his spare time. He initially just used a FTP server to provide completed project files to his very small customer base (it started off as 3 people). After about six years he's pretty well doing his consulting full time, he had to hire on someone to help out with paper work and data entry and is now looking at having a commercial server since he's dealing with nearly a hundred clients. It's still not a big start up, but he's realized the number of files he serves has grown exponentially to the number of clients/projects he's taken on and is starting to feel the growing pains. All he needs now is for the ISP to step in and cut off his connection because he's using a server, so he's shopping around at the moment for a better option.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131917)

I often wonder why anybody would want to run a commercial business venture off a home connection.

People are cheapskates.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132453)

often wonder why anybody would want to run a commercial business venture off a home connection. With all the other options out there, like shared hosting, VPS, cloud servers, rented private servers, and renting racks in a proper datacenter,

Price out how much it would cost you with any of those options if you filled a 1Gbit pipe 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for a month. Heck, just compare it with a fairly common 30/10 internet plan.

What you will find is that those companies stay in business by charging you out the ass for bandwidth (or storage capacity/etc) that often costs them very little to provide due to peering arrangements.

Plus, many of the shared services have horrible response times for databases or what not because they are so oversubscribed. I moved the database off an inexpensive shared hosting provider to a guruplug running at my house a couple years ago just to see what the performance improvement was going to be. The database was a whopping 8MB, and got something 10-15 queries in quick succession once every few hours. Running on the shared hosting, the initial couple queries were taking upwards of 5-20 seconds to complete causing the web page to load very slowly. Running on my home machine the whole thing happened in under 50ms. The whole site was so low traffic I could have hosted it at my house rather than paying the $10 a month or so it cost to run on the shared hosting site and the performance would have been much better.

Re:server ban? (1)

cusco (717999) | about 9 months ago | (#45133369)

Cost, convenience and inertia. Most small businessmen, once they've learned a procedure and are comfortable with it, have no interest in learning an entirely different (and more expensive and less convenient) way of doing the same thing. What they have works, and they're busy running their remodeling or dry cleaning business. Why would they want to change?

Re:server ban? (1)

afidel (530433) | about 9 months ago | (#45131311)

Why would you host a server at home? It's much cheaper to go colo as you'll pay significantly less per Mbps (Google fiber is an exception to this, every other home broadband option is several times more per Mbps). No it's so they can charge you "business" rates if you're doing anything but being a consumption bot.

Re:server ban? (2)

JanneM (7445) | about 9 months ago | (#45131487)

Many reasons. You may want to have a web cam, temperature station or other local data source connected to the net*. You may want to host a game server. A number of applications effectively act as servers even though they're really just applications in practice.

And at least where I am, you never pay per Mb for wired internet. I just pay an extra $10 (or thereabouts) per month to get a fixed IP address from my provider, and I can use it for anything non-commercial.

* Why? For fun.

Why run a server at home (5, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45131497)

Seeding a torrent to 100% without leasing a seedbox is running a server at home. Being player 1 in an online game is running a server at home. Using GoToMyPC or LogMeIn or any other sort of remote desktop is running a server at home. Sharing a large (tens of GB) collection of photos or other files with family members (or with yourself, just in case you're on another computer and need the files off yours) without leasing a VPS and uploading them all, expecting that most won't be downloaded, is running a server at home.

Re:Why run a server at home (1)

afidel (530433) | about 9 months ago | (#45131749)

Sorry, I should have been more specific, why would you want to run a high bandwidth commercial server at home? Residential lines have by FAR the highest $/Mbps of any kind of line outside of T1/DS3 with SLA's, bulk transport is FAR cheaper to buy at a colo.

Re:server ban? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132169)

Because 10TB of storage at home is affordable and 10TB in a colo is not. If I was starting to build a server, I would rather start with a $120 desktop case than a $900 rack case.

Re:server ban? (1)

swb (14022) | about 9 months ago | (#45132501)

There's lots of reasons not to -- power, network connectivity, etc.

I suspect that actual commercial server hosting happens by accident, a small consulting or partnership that just needs basic access to get off the ground (FTP, test web site, etc) and it just grows from there.

Although considering I pay $79 per month for Comcast business class internet with unlimited throughput, I don't think there is any colo option cheaper than that that's not a grossly oversubscribed low-budget VPS.

Re:server ban? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131189)

There was a server ban? What for?

To stop niggers from serving up crack

Re:server ban? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131203)

This is actually fairly standard for ISPs. There are several reasons why an ISP would want to do this, off the top of my head:

* Commercial service - They want to force people to pay for the use of the line to host servers. Just what is a "server" under this would vary, especially since many programs we would think of as "clients" have some server functionality (e.g. listening for incoming TCP/IP connections).
* Bandwidth control - This goes under the assumption that any server will be problematic for bandwidth. This is worse on most consumer-grade networks which are optimized for download, and not upload, as servers inherently tend to upload a lot. I don't know if this would apply to Google's network, though, at least not in the same way it would as, say, a cable or DSL broadband setup.
* Security - Google may not want to have to deal with people screaming how their life savings were hacked because they stuck all their passwords on a half-assed Linux box with no password that was on their home network in the DMZ. This also has some implications for network bandwidth and resources, e.g. computers being turned into botnet nodes (which is bad enough without people having their own servers up).
* Liability - This one is more iffy because of things like the DMCA safe harbor provision, but the prospect that they might get sued or have to deal with criminal proceedings due to somebody running illegal services off of their network resources (e.g. someone decides to build the next Silk Road and does it off of Google's network). While they would likely be absolved if they complied with the law, such as shutting off access when legally compelled to, they might not want to have to deal with the legal hassles and costs that would come with it.

Now, I can't speak to Google's motives as I haven't been paying much attention to their fiber service, nor have I heard about this before. However, it's conceivable that any or all of these reasons may well apply. However, one of the advantages of having such ridiculously high bandwidth is the ability to put up your own server for just about anything - web server, FTP, MUD, game server, IRC, VPN - you name it. Since the ISP would rather everyone just use their connection for downloading, they get uppity when people try to take full advantage of the service. This is, however, getting harder over time, as more people learn the utility of having their own server functionality available, and are promptly pissed off that they can't do it and also refuse to pay extra.

For my own opinion, I think so long as you're not messing up the network for others and you don't blame Google if the cows get stolen because you left the barn door open, you should be able to run a server if you'd like.

Feel free to correct me on this as my CS degrees have gathered quite a bit of dust.

Re:server ban? (4, Interesting)

w1zz4 (2943911) | about 9 months ago | (#45131261)

As a Network Security architect in a big ISP, I can tell you that one of the biggest threat to network security is all those compromised servers installed by anyone who can read a random howto on the internet...

Re:server ban? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131555)

And here I thought the biggest threat was the ISP's themselves.

Revealed: How US and UK Spy Agencies Defeat Internet Privacy and Security [theguardian.com]

The agencies, the documents reveal, have adopted a battery of methods in their systematic and ongoing assault on what they see as one of the biggest threats to their ability to access huge swathes of internet traffic – "the use of ubiquitous encryption across the internet".

Those methods include covert measures to ensure NSA control over setting of international encryption standards, the use of supercomputers to break encryption with "brute force", and – the most closely guarded secret of all – collaboration with technology companies and internet service providers themselves.

Re:server ban? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131341)

Because no one wants to see your homemade dog/dick porn.

Impeach Obama (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131357)

I agree that Obama must be impeached for shutting down the US Government. We the people stand by Ted Cruz and the Republicans as the majority cannot stand for these shameful acts any longer!

All this talk of Syria and chemical weapons disarmament is pointless. Each day goes by and we haven't started our peaceful military deployment is another wasted day.

Reopen the US Government immediately President Obama. Begin the war on chemical weapons. Do away with the unsightly notion of giving middle income earners the right to free health care. This absurdity cannot last.

Re:Impeach Obama (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131599)

i will pay you $4.00 to touch your Obama loving wiener.

Re:server ban? (2)

segedunum (883035) | about 9 months ago | (#45131727)

Because Google don't want you running your own services. They want to you to be using their e-mail and other services. Giving people all that bandwidth and allowing them to run what they like on their own negates their business model.

Re:server ban? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131735)

There was a server ban? What for?

Yes and No.
Yes, in that saying "No servers" is standard for any residential TOS from any ISP.
No, in that almost nobody actually enforces the ban on "servers" for things like VPN's, remote access, personal "servers" for things like playing games, and other small-scale things which could still be called a "server".
Yes, in that you can't run any kind of commercial-grade type server, business use server, etc.

Kudos to Google for actually changing the language of the TOS, instead of relying on a "gentleman's agreement" like most ISP's do.

Re:server ban? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132655)

There was a server ban? What for?

A network cable has finite bandwidth. If your neighbour runs a business with high-bandwidth servers, your gaming is going to lag. Your ISP could build separate pipes for everyone on your street, but then you would end up paying a lot more just to get away from your neighbour's traffic. Or your ISP could build a fatter shared pipe, again you ending up paying for your neighbour.

It is cheaper for you if everyone on your street agrees not to run high-bandwidth business on your residential network, because then you can all share a more reasonably specced and priced connection. If your neighbour wants high-bandwidth servers, he buys a separate connection, and the bill goes to him, not you.

The problem isn't servers per se, but how do you draw the line between a personal game server and a high bandwidth server. The line has to be able to stand in court, when your neighbour sues the ISP for throttling his business.

So much... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131097)

...for network neutrality.

Re:So much... (1)

Luthair (847766) | about 9 months ago | (#45131289)

This isn't anything to do with network neutrality, they aren't restricting access to different services.

i got a question (3, Interesting)

etash (1907284) | about 9 months ago | (#45131109)

but does google offer google fiber for businesses for those who want to host their own servers ? Or the only service they offer is for home users ?

OMFG This is Huge (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131129)

Google has officially reversed a rarely ever enforced and rather inconsequential AUP rule against "servers". They still ban what most people refer to as servers, websites and FTP servers serving hundreds/thousands/millions of people. But, they don;t bring the ban hammer for you port forwarding the web server of your IP camera or your personal email server.

Guess what, hardly any other ISP ever enforced the bans against those servers either, despite the AUP ban.

Looks like its going to be a rather meta news day.

port 80 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131159)

Are they going to block/slow incoming port 80 or any other ports?

Seems Reasonable (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131177)

They are doing what every other ISP does. Overselling. There isn't anything wrong with that in and of itself, though obviously you want to avoid congestion as much as possible, so don't oversell too much.

The problem is that the prices they are charging are insanely low. They don't want people running datacenters in their home. Supplying a gigabit network that is even remotely close to saturated is a very expensive task. A person running a small game server or some such for his friends is not going to use up a ridiculous amount of bandwidth. Certainly no more than the guy torrenting 1080p rips of every TV show in the past 10 years. However a person running a website hosting company out of his garage is go chew through multiple terrabytes per day.

Re:Seems Reasonable (1)

StripedCow (776465) | about 9 months ago | (#45131441)

Sigh. I want to pay just for what I use, just like in the old days. To hell with these complicated terms and conditions which are only fair to google.

Re:Seems Reasonable (1)

Salgat (1098063) | about 9 months ago | (#45133099)

Then buy a t1 line which guarantees up/down bandwidth with 99.9% uptime. There is a reason you are paying $300/month for that guarantee.

Re:Seems Reasonable (1)

Skapare (16644) | about 9 months ago | (#45131523)

This has nothing to do with running a server. It's all about bandwidth and nothing but bandwidth. They are giving you gigabit as a PEAK capability, not as a continuous rate. What they should do is specify the limits of their service in those terms like the maximum amount of data you can transfer in one second, one minute, one hour, one day, etc.

The reality is, most people will be downloading. That means most of the usage is in one direction. They will have plenty of capacity in the other direction.

Re:Seems Reasonable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132359)

I would argue that it's more the type of users. You can break customers mostly into two groups, Enterprise services and not. Anyone running a commercial grade server will likely consume huge portions of bandwidth, Small businesses and home users don't typically.

Kind of like an insurance company looking at people who smoke or don't smoke. Yes, some non-smokers will get lung cancer, but you just eat the cost, but when someone smokes, then you charge them more because they are in a completely different risk category.

Sonic.Net has this same stance. They claim to have a few home users that use most of their 1gb connection 24/7, but they don't care because those kinds of users crop up in a large enough population.

Happy to see this, for two reasons (4, Insightful)

C0C0C0 (688434) | about 9 months ago | (#45131191)

Of course, I'm glad to see the policy nixed (like I'll ever get Google fiber), but I think it's rare we give companies props for reversing decisions we've nuked them for. So, go Google. Way not to be evil.

Re:Happy to see this, for two reasons (2)

HideyoshiJP (1392619) | about 9 months ago | (#45132037)

It's more than them not being evil. Their original stance is exactly the same as most ISPs: no servers on home accounts. While these are rarely enforced, allowing most game (i.e. Minecraft) servers and the like, it is still the policy of any ISP I've dealt with. Google has done a good thing by allowing these personal use servers. Sadly, they're not likely to reduce the amount of traffic sniffing.

Re:Happy to see this, for two reasons (2)

swillden (191260) | about 9 months ago | (#45133317)

Sadly, they're not likely to reduce the amount of traffic sniffing.

Google Fiber doesn't sniff traffic.

Re:Happy to see this, for two reasons (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 9 months ago | (#45132671)

Lets move away from the silly evil / not evil. It's a good motto, it's good to try to not be evil, but in judging the actions of people or companies, declaring whether things are good or evil is simplistic and useless. It's clear that google fiber is better than most of the options that currently exist for most people, but it's clear that it's not perfect compared to how good it could be while still making a healthy profit. I think that's about as simple a statement as one can make.

Because they have all the right taps in place (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | about 9 months ago | (#45131199)

All this means is that they've implemented the infrastructure needed to intercept and decode your traffic.

Re:Because they have all the right taps in place (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about 9 months ago | (#45131237)

Not exactly. While I'm not saying they don't, this does not prove they do.

Something as simple as looking at their logs to see you've been transferring several TB per month is enough to tell them something is going on.

Ideally, this would be the extent of the cotrols - low volume stuff that people typically use wouldn't register (or wouldn't seem extraordinary) and they'd quickly spot some smartass trying to run an ISP.

Freedom of Speech / Freedom to Listen? (1)

Yebyen (59663) | about 9 months ago | (#45131291)

I feel like if the founding fathers had been born when I was, they would have known that "freedom to listen" on port 80 is just as important as "freedom of speech."

What difference does it make if I'm using a home connection to promote my political ideas? The exceptions listed do nothing to benefit freedom of speech. You pay for home internet, and then they want to ding you again to serve up your ideas on Port 80. Why don't they just give you a NAT'ed address and be done with it forever.

Re:Freedom of Speech / Freedom to Listen? (1)

Yer Mom (78107) | about 9 months ago | (#45131743)

Why don't they just give you a NAT'ed address and be done with it forever.

This is probably one of the reasons for server ban clauses these days — if they do decide to go to carrier-grade NAT rather than, say, actually getting IPv6 working, then they can dismiss complaints of breakage with "you shouldn't have been running a server anyway"...

Re:Freedom of Speech / Freedom to Listen? (1)

Riddler Sensei (979333) | about 9 months ago | (#45131873)

Why don't they just give you a NAT'ed address and be done with it forever.

Which is what my ISP did. And they're damned proud of it, too. Even have a webpage dedicated to telling people how awesome and safe this whole NATing thing is. A big problem is that the tier 1 techs have no idea what that even means. I reckon they have to have some incentive to resolve issues themselves as opposed to escalating tickets because they fight tooth and nail to hold onto your issue, even if they're not authorized to resolve it ("Can I get a public IP?", "I need a new modem provisioned", etc.).

Re:Freedom of Speech / Freedom to Listen? (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 9 months ago | (#45131895)

The problem with your argument is that port 80 is not required to serve up a webpage, merely a default. You can easily host on another port.

P2P (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131305)

Does this mean they won't allow P2P usage?

Huh (1)

Arkiel (741871) | about 9 months ago | (#45131377)

So no one had to get the FCC involved? And the ISP still changed their policy? I don't understand.

Re:Huh (1)

Skapare (16644) | about 9 months ago | (#45131405)

One of the company executives actually came in to work one day.

Re:Huh (1)

intermodal (534361) | about 9 months ago | (#45131665)

The ISP changed their policy enough not to get the FCC involved. It's like settling out of court to avoid a patent being invalidated.

RANT: it's not internet access (5, Insightful)

RichMan (8097) | about 9 months ago | (#45131417)

Any provider that bans "servers" is not providing internet access. They are providing media consumption access. They should be forced to very clearly differentiate that as a type of service provided.

Internet access is unconstainted IP packets. Both TCP and UDP and whatever other protocol you want.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (2)

Sockatume (732728) | about 9 months ago | (#45131541)

Believe it or not there are shades of grey between "completely unfettered use of the connection" and "I am ter conumar", and properly discussing this issue would probably benefit from understanding the kinds of distinctions involved.

Few want internet access (2)

tepples (727027) | about 9 months ago | (#45131547)

There isn't much demand for Internet access at home, apart from the edge cases that inhabit Slashdot.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (1)

disposable60 (735022) | about 9 months ago | (#45131591)

Any provider that bans "servers" is not providing internet access. They are providing media consumption access.

And this is all the MAFIAA is willing to allow. The tiny portion of Internet users who believe any other use is even possible, let alone useful, would fit comfortably on the campus of your average US land-grant university.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (2)

Kjella (173770) | about 9 months ago | (#45131667)

Internet access is unconstainted IP packets. Both TCP and UDP and whatever other protocol you want.

Since pretty much all residental connections I know of block outgoing port 25 I don't think most of the world has "internet access" the way you define internet access. Good luck in your quest to redefine it.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (1)

swillden (191260) | about 9 months ago | (#45131687)

Internet access is unconstainted IP packets. Both TCP and UDP and whatever other protocol you want.

Since pretty much all residental connections I know of block outgoing port 25

Google Fiber doesn't.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131761)

This is a very good point. Well put Sir!

Now mod this comment up.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (2)

Luthair (847766) | about 9 months ago | (#45131767)

I disagree. They definitely provide the user with unrestricted access to the Internet, however they don't claim to provide the Internet with access to the user.

Look up the dictionary definition of access then explain which definition you're trying to use to justify your statement.

Re: RANT: it's not internet access (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132183)

The internet is a bi-directional connection. You can't even complete the TCP handshake without "the internet" having access to you. Go troll elsewhere.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about 9 months ago | (#45132133)

If I had a nickel for every time I've seen this statement on Slashdot over the last 15 years, I could buy myself a nice lunch.

They are offering internet access in the purest sense of the term. There are no technical barriers in place that prevent all the normal types of traffic you can have over an IP connection. Rather, it's a contractual agreement that Google is already admitting is behind the times.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132305)

Any provider that bans "servers" is not providing internet access.

Yes, they are. They're selling you access to the internet via their network.

They are providing media consumption access.

Yes, exactly.

They should be forced to very clearly differentiate that as a type of service provided.

They are. You seem to be confused as to what internet access means. You seem to be operating under the assumption that it's the same thing as gaining a presence ON the internet, which it's not. You CAN get what you're describing, but you'll need to start by getting your own ASN.

Internet access is unconstainted IP packets.

No it's not. (I assume you meant unconstrained...) You're purchasing a residential service, it's considered an entertainment package. If you want unrestricted ability to send/receive packets then you need to go pay for a business account.

You CAN have unlimited internet. You CAN have full bandwidth all day long. All these things people bitch about ARE available, you just have to pay for it. Most people don't need or care about most of those things, and so normal residential service will be just fine for most people.
Seriously, you're like a guy who walks into an all-you-can-eat buffet at 5pm and complains because there's a line and you don't have a private table. Well guess what? There are places where you can reserve a private table at 5pm and get great food with no wait... but you're going to have to PAY for it and it's going to cost a lot more than the buffet.

Re:RANT: it's not internet access (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45133171)

They should not be given access to the telephone poles to provide anything other than internet access.

I realize everyone believes in hypercapitalism and all, but there's no market-efficiency excuse for price discrimination based on content. You can't wave your hands on this one. You need to actually block the jack moves.

block of ipv6 addresses mandatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131447)

isps had an excuse to limiting one ip address per customer, and an excuse for using dynamic ip addressing, charging extra for a fixed ip address, with the ipv4 address shortage. With ipv6, this is no longer the case. ipv6 address space will allow the use of ipv6 addresses for addressing/talking to various household objects for home automation for example, various parts of automobiles, etc.

Google has no excuse for not assigning a large block of ipv6 STATIC addresses to each customer. This will also, beside fast speeds and allowance of servers, help individuals to experiment and create the next big thing or next big things to help themselves, their families, and in the end society in general.

The demand for a block of ipv6 addresses to be assigned to each customer, weather they use them or not, needs to be made standard practice now, before ipv6 becomes widely adopted and before isps create and make widespread the practice of assigning only one ipv6 address, and possibly even continue with charging for more than one address or charging for a static address.

A large block, maybe 65,000 addresses or more, should be considered the mandatory starting point, with more available on request. Remember, this is ipv6 address space we're talking about. 65,000, or even far more are doable. Assigning one address to each electronic item in one's house, each appliance, each mechanical part, home automation, car parts and more would easily push over 1,000 addresses, with far more needed as new applications create the need for more addresses. Programmers and potential programmers would find good use for a large availability of ip address availability over time.

Re:block of ipv6 addresses mandatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132513)

The requirement for IPv6 is to assign at least a /64 as many parts of the standard assume this. Every user will have at least 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 addresses. Most ISPs allow /60s or /56s for free on demand.

I hope this wasn't just part of their plan (1)

ctrlshift (2616337) | about 9 months ago | (#45131525)

You know, give us New Coke, gain a huge amount of publicity, then "j/k lol!" their way to victory.

Fiber for the sheeple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131545)

So they are ripping up the sidewalks and streets out there and don't want to enable people to use the fiber installation to their hearts' (and minds') content?
Pretty condescending viewpoint by Google there.

CONTROL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45131691)

NEVER give control to Google or any other corporation.

Old News (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45132343)

As someone who has Google Fiber, this policy was changed back at the beginning of this year to read what it states now on their site:

"Our Terms of Service prohibit running a server for commercial purposes. However, personal, non-commercial usage of servers that complies with our Acceptable Use Policy is acceptable, including using virtual private networks (VPN) to access services in your home, and using hardware or applications that include server capabilities for uses like multi-player gaming, video-conferencing, and home security."

What's the use of a pipe that big? (2)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | about 9 months ago | (#45132705)

If you can't run servers on it? I can't imagine using even a fraction of that unless I'm running some kinds of servers out of my house.

Meanwhile in Overland Park (1)

symbolset (646467) | about 9 months ago | (#45133079)

If you were ever interested in running for city council or mayor, this may be your year [dslreports.com] .

Two weeks after OP balked at Google Fiber they approved it, only to have Google withdraw the offer. OP will now be the island of "no gigabit" in a sea of Internet.

Throttling Progress and Life (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45133253)

Corporate business apartheid. A lower liege commerce may have its own server, some bandwith, hoist a clipped banneret, and bear a coat-of-ars, - er, I mean, arms - with matte primary colours. A privileged serf must hobble his servers upon entering the net, and may not wear leggings with stripes.

In the 19th cenury, in England, the first automobiles ("horseless chariots") were obliged by law to be preceded by a man on foot, with a horn or bell and a flag, to warn the pedestrians.

" ... wherefore in the fourth of Edward IV it was ordained and proclaimed that beaks of shoon and boots should not pass the length of two inches, upon pain of cursing by the clergy, and by Parliament to pay twenty shillings for every pair. And every cordwainer that shod any man or woman on the Sunday, to pay thirty shillings. ... " - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poulaine [wikipedia.org]

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...