MARWAN connects 120 institutions – universities, research institutes and high schools.
MARWAN was established in 1998. It is currently in its third version (MARWAN3). This backbone is based on VPN/MPLS. It offers links between 2 and 100Mbps. MARWAN is connected to the internet with 1Gbps. A Google Global Cache service is deployed.
MARWAN3 was connected to the GÉANT network for one year. While, MARWAN2 was connected to the GÉANT network for six years.
More than 95% of institutions’ links are in fiber. MARWAN is an LIR, it has its own IPv4 and IPv6 addresses and its own AS.
Services offered by MARWAN include:
- The Moroccan Identity Federation for education and research eduIDM (www.eduidm.ma)
- MaGrid: National Computing Grid (www.magrid.ma), including certification authority MaGrid-CA (ca.magrid.ma).
- MARWAN is a member of ASREN (Arab States Research and Education Network) and is included in the GÉANT Compendium of national research and education networks.
MARWAN is funded by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. The ministry pays for the internet link, whilst each institute pays for its link to the MARWAN network.
The government funds MARWAN directly through funds from the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research. MARWAN’s staff is formed by government employees.
Why is MARWAN an example of a successful NREN?
Since its inception in 1998, MARWAN has been a driver for Moroccan universities to develop new services in education, technology transfer and scientific research. It was seen as a locomotive for the establishment and development of campus networks in Moroccan universities. In addition to financial savings, MARWAN has implemented some value-added services such as MaGrid, eduroam and eduIDM.
A potential threat is to the funding of MARWAN. To ensure the sustainability of MARWAN there must be a model that allows for further funding in addition to government funding. It should also recruit qualified people to ensure the success of all services offered by MARWAN.