Tuesday, November 13, 2007

MontaVista Releases Carrier Grade Linux Version 5.0

MontaVista Software announced version 5.0 of its Linux Carrier Grade Edition (CGE) for network equipment providers (NEPs). The new Linux CGE 5.0 provides new telco scalability features to handle unexpected jumps in protocol traffic, new functions to increase reliability, new field-serviceability features, and new NSA-level security protection.

The heart of MontaVista Linux Carrier Grade Edition 5.0 is an embedded Linux operating system designed for telecom and network equipment, including ATCA- and MicroTCA-based platforms, such as SGSNs, GGSNs, and softswitches. Developers can add off-the-shelf Linux utilities.

Some release highlights:

  • Linux 2.6.21 kernel support

  • Run-Time Application Patcher: gives field engineers the ability to apply a binary patch to a live system while it runs, without incurring any downtime. Engineers can update software, fix bugs, and add new features to a live system without stopping it or rebooting.

  • Flight Recorder: acts like an airplane black box to track and log system history. It keeps a scheduler history, which provides more information than a crash dump snapshot, and is user-extensible for customized tracking. It also performs advanced diagnostics.

  • Field-Safe Application Debugger: debugs a live system without halting execution or affecting services.

  • Live application core dump: with only a short (generally tens to hundreds of milliseconds) stop of the application, this new feature takes a snapshot of the running application. The application can continue running while engineers debug the snapshot to fix the application.

  • Integrated real-time response: 100% native Linux with real-time performance features, including MontaVista enhancements plus integrated high resolution nanosecond timers (hrtimers) that avoid the compatibility and reliability headaches caused by non-Linux second-kernel add-ons. Additional real-time features include fast mutexes, threaded soft and hard IRQ handlers, and application-level priority inheritance and queuing, providing preemption response latency as low as 50 microseconds.

  • Microstate accounting: provides the ability to measure process and thread utilization on a CPU.

  • NSA-level security for carriers: includes Security-Enhanced Linux (SELinux), developed by the National Security Agency (NSA). MontaVista SELinux protects the integrity of and controls access to files, network sockets, and all system objects by preventing an employee or external intruder from intentionally or accidentally taking control of the system.

  • Integrated development environment: includes new runtime components that integrate with MontaVista DevRocket, an Eclipse-based IDE with development tools that enhance productivity for both kernel-level and application-level engineers. Integrated memory leak detection, performance profiling, memory usage analysis, and system tracing combine to accelerate system development and maintenance, and increase system availability.

  • Multicore and SMP support: supports both single-core and multicore processors, and supports equipment built with multiple processing chips as well as synchronous and asynchronous multiprocessing on integrated chips.

  • Carrier standards compliance: complies with the new Carrier Grade Linux Specification 4.0 from the Linux Foundation. CGE 5.0 also will comply with the SCOPE Alliance Linux Profile, and runs on hardware designed to support the PICMG Advanced Telecommunications Computing Architecture (ATCA) and MicroTCA specifications.

USB High Speed Inter-Chip Spec Hits 480 Mbps, Targets Mobile Devices

A new High Speed Inter-Chip (HSIC) 1.1 specification, which is a supplement to the USB 2.0 specification, supports faster chip-to-chip communication, at speeds up to 480 Mbps. The design target includes multiple high bandwidth operations on devices like 3G/4G handsets, smartphones, set-top boxes, mobile internet devices and connectivity within the PC.

The specification allows the integration of multiple high speed capabilities, such as 3G/4G modems, WiMAX, 802.11n and storage peripherals, as well as other USB based input devices like keypads and control panels. The HSIC permits the device to move data between the various components at higher bandwidth and with improved power efficiency. It also eliminates the need for analog PHYs by providing a digital signal interconnect between the SOCs and their IC peripherals.

"The Inter-Chip specification has been a pivotal building block for developers wanting to integrate the USB interface inside mobile applications," said Jeff Ravencraft, USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF) president.


Dell'Oro: SP Router Market Surges to $2 Billion in Q3

The service provider router market surged past the $2 billion mark for the first time in Q3 2007, according to a newly published report by Dell'Oro Group.

Cisco Systems and Juniper Networks each recorded record revenue from sales of service provider routers and strengthened their number one and two market share positions, respectively.

"Internet traffic growth is driving strong demand for routers, and most router manufacturers are at or near record sales levels. Our market outlook for the near term is very positive, and we will likely see more sales records in the fourth quarter," said Shin Umeda, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group.


Edgewater Adds WAN Link Redundancy to EdgeMarc Routers

Edgewater Networks announced an extension of its EdgeMarc VoIP survivability feature set to include Wide Area Network (WAN) link redundancy. The EdgeMarc routers provide a VoIP aware NAT/Firewall with QoS capabilities. WAN link redundancy allows enterprise and service provider customers to use dual access link connections for diverse routing to enterprise locations.

The list of EdgeMarc VoIP survivability features includes:

  • Application layer based monitoring of call processing servers to determine connectivity

  • Automatic detection of loss of connectivity to call processing servers caused by WAN link failures, network congestion or call processing server software failure

  • Automatic return of call control to network based call processing servers once connectivity has been restored

  • Configurable timers to determine call processing server connectivity

  • Call processing server connectivity status indicators

  • Support for multiple call processing servers using DNS

  • Reporting of the currently active call processing server in environments using multiple call processing servers

  • Local call switching between VoIP endpoints, premises based PSTN gateways or integrated EdgeMarc FXO ports during WAN link failures or other failures that prevent connectivity to network based call processing servers

  • Calling features such as transfer, hold and conference are provided by EdgeMarc Series routers

  • Simplified setup that creates a local dial plan in the EdgeMarc appliance by monitoring traffic to network based call processing servers.

Nokia Unveils its N82 Converged Device

Nokia unveiled its N82 multimedia handset optimized for photography, navigation and Internet connectivity. Like its predecessor the N95, Nokia describes the N82 as "a truly converged device that is not one thing but is many."

Key features include:

  • WCDMA2100 (HSDPA), EGSM900, GSM850/1800/1900 MHz (EGPRS) with automatic switching between bands and modes

  • Dual Transfer Mode (DTM) support for simultaneous voice and packet data connection in GSM/EDGE networks

  • A-GPS with preinstalled Nokia Maps

  • 5 megapixel camera with Xenon flash and Carl Zeiss optics

  • Video call and video sharing support (WCDMA network services)

  • MPEG-4 VGA video capture of up to 30 fps

  • up to 100MB internal dynamic memory and hot swappable microSD memory card slot

  • direct connection to compatible TV via TV-out or wireless LAN/UPnP

  • Talk time of up to 190 min (WCDMA) and up to 260 min (GSM)

  • S60 software on Symbian OS

  • 2.4" LCD QVGA with automatic screen rotation

AT&T Signs Programming Deal with SES AMERICOM's IP-Prime

AT&T signed a deal for SES Americom' IP PRIME service to international programming for AT&T's U-verse TV service. SES AMERICOM will also provide international programming for AT&T broadband and wireless platforms. Financial terms were not disclosed.

IP-PRIME receives and encodes video from any source, formats the content and distributes it to any media platform. The process takes place at IP-PRIME's super headend facility in Vernon Valley, N.J., where content is encoded into the MPEG-4 video standard used in IP to optimize the picture quality of each program while requiring only half the bandwidth of programs in the older MPEG-2 standard. Programs are then uplinked to the IP-PRIME satellites, which in turn will deliver the content to AT&T video superhub offices for distribution to AT&T U-verse customers.


AT&T Launches Mobile Banking Nationwide with Firethorn

AT&T launched a mobile banking platform that enables consumers nationwide to view account balances and history, transfer funds and pay bills from their AT&T mobile handsets. Banking partners include Wachovia and SunTrust Banks. Firethorn Holders is named as strategic partner as mobile banking and payment enabler, along with CheckFree Corp.

All data is encrypted. The mobile banking application will be pre-loaded on future AT&T handsets beginning later this year. It is also available for download on more than 30 of AT&T's handsets -- representing approximately 30 million devices in the market today.



Qualcomm to Acquire Firethorn for Mobile Banking

Qualcomm agreed to acquire Atlanta-based Firethorn Holdings, which offers mobile banking technology, for approximately $210 million in cash.
Firethorn links financial institutions and wireless operators through a unified, secure and scalable technology platform that extends full-service banking capabilities to consumer wireless devices. Firethorn's financial institution partners include Wachovia, SunTrust Bank, Regions Financial, BancorpSouth and Synovus, among others.

Qualcomm said the deal provides it with expertise in the financial industry and key relationships with wireless operators, financial institutions and payment processors.



Cablevision's Optimum Lightpath Reaches Milestone: 2,500 Buildings Connected

Cablevision's Optimum Lightpath division, announced a company milestone: it has connected the 2,500th building to its enterprise network in the New York metropolitan area.

Optimum Lightpath owns and manages a fully fiber optic network across the New York metropolitan area for high capacity and secure data, voice and video delivery and management. It has more than 2,500 route miles of fiber in the ground.


Sunrise Employs Ikanos VDSL2 in Broadband Access Test Equipment

Sunrise Telecom is using Ikanos' Communications' Fx 10050S-5 VDSL2 customer premises equipment (CPE) chipset in its latest VDSL Transceiver Unit-Remote Terminal (VTU-R) test solution for the SunSet MTT modular platform. The Sunrise Telecom solution is geared for efficient VDSL2 service installation and verification, offering testing capabilities from VDSL2 VTU-R modem emulation to 30 MHz spectrum noise tests.

Ikanos' fifth generation Fx10050S-5 VDSL2 CPE chipset supports all VDSL2 profiles up to 17.6 MHz and offers up to 100/50 Mbps performance. http://www.sunrisetelecom.com

Verizon Business Lights 40 Gbps IP Circuits with Juniper

Verizon Business has activated router-to-router 40Gbps (OC-768) circuits carrying live traffic using Juniper Networks' T-series core routers. The 40 Gbps interconnections between backbone routers are carrying production Internet traffic between Washington D.C. and Chicago as well as production voice, data and video traffic on Verizon's MPLS network between Washington D.C. and New York City.

Verizon Business plans to deploy additional 40Gbps transmission spans and circuits on its U.S. domestic network through the end of the year and into 2008. The most common standard deployed today for high-speed circuits is 10Gbps.

"Aggregating IP traffic onto one 40Gbps wavelength means not only higher traffic throughput, but lower latency and reduced jitter, which translates into enhanced performance and responsiveness for Verizon Business customers," said Fred Briggs, executive vice president of network operations and technology for Verizon Business.


Telefónica Brasil Selects Juniper Core Routers

Telefónica has upgraded its next-generation core IP network in Brazil by deploying Juniper Networks T-series core routing platforms. The T-series deployment in Telefónica core network in Brazil provides additional capacity required to support data for Internet access, corporate VPNs and MPLS. Financial terms were not disclosed.


Comcast Launches Hosted Microsoft Communication Services for SMBs

Comcast launched hosted Microsoft Communication Services for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), providing corporate- class e-mail, calendaring and document sharing. Comcast is the only major U.S. Internet service provider to make this product available at no additional cost with its broadband services.

Features and benefit of Microsoft Communication Services include:

  • Enabling SMB teams to share documents and access calendars, track tasks, and e-mail and collaboration solutions based on Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0

  • Removing barriers of up-front costs, help desk support and ongoing system maintenance

  • Extending the boundaries of the "office" to anywhere there's Internet

Microsoft Communication Services is the first major product to be launched in conjunction with Comcast's introduction of high-speed Internet, phone and video services for small businesses across the country. http://www.comcast.com


Tellabs 1100 Multiservice Access Platform Gains RUS Certification

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service (RUS) granted program acceptance to the Tellabs 1100 Multiservice Access Platform (MSAP) for copper and fiber services. RUS acceptance makes the Tellabs 1100 MSAP family available through tailored government funding and low-cost loans.

In addition to the Tellabs 1100 MSAP, the Tellabs 1000 Multiservice Access Series and the Tellabs 8800 Multiservice Router also have RUS acceptance. Recently, Tellabs announced contracts with providers that will bring advanced broadband services to users in rural sections of eight states.


Integra5 Adds to Management Team

Integra5 named Steve Borelli as vice president of marketing and business development and Marion Mendelsohn as vice president of client services and support. Before joining Integra5, Borelli was vice president of broadband markets at Comverse where he led global marketing and business development for the cable, satellite and IPTV markets. Prior to Comverse, Borelli served as vice president of business development at CSG Systems.
Before joining Integra5, Mendelsohn was with Comverse in a number of management roles, most recently as area vice president for business systems operations and quality programs. http://www.integra5.com

JDSU Debuts Fiber Optic Test Solution for CWDM

JDSU announced the release of the coarse wavelength division multiplexing (CWDM) series of OTDR modules for its T-BERD/MTS-8000 and T-BERD/MTS-6000 platforms. The CWDM OTDR test solution is aimed at cable operators, dark fiber providers and telecommunications service providers. Users can test new wavelength routes not yet in use without disrupting communications traffic on active wavelengths. This "in-service" capability increases technician productivity and helps reduce installation and maintenance costs.


U.S. House Passes 911 Modernization and Public Safety Act of 2007

The U.S. House of Representatives approved the "911 Modernization and Safety Act of 2007" (H.R. 3403), which will impose on IP-enabled voice service providers engaged in interstate communication a requirement to provide 911 service, including E-911 (enhanced 911) service, to subscribers.

The bill would also authorize a telecommunications carrier to use, disclose, or permit access to call location information in emergencies. Requires IP-enabled voice service providers to provide subscriber list information to emergency service providers. In addition, it prohibits telecommunications carriers and IP-enabled voice service providers that provide emergency communications services from using information in or from automatic location information databases and master street address guides for any purpose other than providing emergency services.


One Minute Video: WiMAX Backhaul Architecture


One Minute Video presented by Alan Solheim, DragonWave -- WiMAX Backhaul Architecture

Jargon Buster