Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Soapstone Releases Beta Version of its Control Plane Software

Soapstone Networks, which is a business unit of Avici Systems, released the beta version of its Provider Network Controller (PNC)
multi-vendor, multi-technology dynamic control plane. Soapstone said the new product would help automate the entire service lifecycle by providing state of the art provisioning, monitoring and repair, network fault to service correlation, performance, optimization, and planning software to carrier and enterprise customers. Net One Systems, one of Japan's leading networking and systems integration providers is a beta customer for the PNC software.

The beta release includes the PBB-TE module for the PNC which includes the dynamic provisioning, monitoring and repair of services across a multi-vendor Carrier Ethernet network as well as network operations support.

Key capabilities include:

1.) Dynamic Service Provisioning. One of the main features of the PNC control plane is the dynamic provisioning of services across a multi-vendor network. In addition to simple, best-effort shortest path routing, the PNC performs path computations involving a variety of constraints and
equipment limitations.

2.) Service Monitoring and Repair. After a network event (link/node/fiber failure) the network equipment responds in less than 50msec to provide service protection. Since the PNC has a database containing the network topology it has the ability to determine which service(s) was
affected by the outage and creates both a primary and secondary path to restore the service and ensure that it always remains protected.

3.) Bridge-and-Roll. Provides network operations support by making it possible for customers to introduce new hardware or services seamlessly into a network or perform routine maintenance in an automated fashion. This capability enables customers to request the removal of nodes from
active service without disruption to services. When a node is taken out of service by the customer, the PNC notices all of the affected services and for each service that is impacted, the PNC re-computes paths for services that were locked due to lack of a network resource. As with
any path selection, the Committed Information Rate (CIR) of each service is used in the path
selection and no oversubscription occurs.