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CANARIE, the Canadian Advanced Network and Research for Industry and Education, is a Canadian government supported non-profit corporation, founded in 1993, which maintains a set of leased wide area network links and also develops and deploys advanced network applications and technologies, for education and high-speed data transfer purposes. Their computer network is called CA*Net or CAnet.


CANARIE is led by universities and partners with several companies in areas from the networking and technology industries. As of 2007, the organization has 84 members, mostly universities, institutes and other places of higher education, together with several companies and government agencies.

Headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, the company maintains and modifies a set of leased wide area network links for educational and research organizations of Canada.


The original CAnet was created in 1990 with support from the National Research Council. CANARIE was involved in its operations as network had been upgraded to 56 kbit links in 1993, to 10 Mbit/s in 1995, and then later to 20 Mbit/s. It had 100 Mbit/s aggregate capacity in 1996, and the same year the National Test Network (NTN) project introduced ATM.

In 1997, the company Bell Advanced Communications (later Bell Nexxia, now part of Bell Canada) was given operating control over the network operations. The CAnet II was launched based on NTN links and capacities, OC-3 (155 Mbit/s) at the core.

In 1998, CANARIE deployed CA*Net 3, the world's first national optical Internet research and education network. The planned capacity of the network was 40 Gbit/s.

The current version of the network is named CAnet 4, and it is based on OC-192 optical circuits.

One of the technologies CANARIE is developing is User Controlled Light Path (UCLP) switching.

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