ERNET India is the National Research and Education Network dedicated to support the needs of the research and education community within the country. It was established in 1998 as an autonomous scientific society under the Department of Information Technology, Government of India. It operates ERNET network – a pan-Indian terrestrial and satellite network with 9 points of presence at premier research and academic institutions. Focus of ERNET India is not limited to just providing connectivity, but to meet the entire needs of the academic and research institutions by providing consultancy, project management, training and other value added services such as web hosting, e-mail services, video conferencing, domain registration, CUG services.
ERNET India is serving many institutions in various sectors, namely, health, agriculture, higher education, schools and science & technology. ERNET was also identified by Govt. of India as the nodal network for India and was connected through high-speed link to the pan-European Education and Research Network (GEANT)during 2006 to 2010. The ERNET-GEANT connectivity is now available through Trans Eurasia Information Network (TEIN3).
How it began
ERNET was initiated in 1986 by the Department of Electronics (DoE), with funding support from the Government of India and United Nations Development Program (UNDP), involving eight premier institutions as participating agencies NCST (National Centre for Software Technology) Bombay, IISc (Indian Institute of Science) Bangalore, five IITs (Indian Institutes of Technology) at Delhi, Bombay, Kanpur, Kharagpur and Madras, and the DoE, New Delhi. ERNET began as a multi protocol network with both the TCP/IP and the OSI-IP protocol stacks running over the backbone. Since 1995,however, almost all traffic is carried over TCP/IP.
ERNET (Education and Research Network) has made a significant contribution to the emergence of networking in the country. It practically brought the Internet to India and has built up national capabilities in the area of net-working, especially in protocol software engineering. It has not only succeeded in building a large network that provides various facilities to the intellectual segment of Indian society-the research and education community, it has over the years become a trendsetter in the field of networking. UNDP has lauded ERNET as one of the most successful programmes it has funded. The Govt. of India has committed itself to further strengthen the project by including it in the 9th Plan with the allocation of funds and by creation of a new organisational set-up in the form of a Society. The Science community of the country has also recognized ERNET's contribution both for infrastructure services as well as for R&D. In 1998, it became an autonomous scientific society - ERNET India under the administrative control of Department of Information Technology, Govt. of India.