Thursday, December 15, 2011

Blueprint: The "Flattening Effect" and Network Intelligence

by Terence Martin and Andy Huckridge

How To Stay Ahead of the Growing Trend for “Anywhere, Anytime” Data

The immense growth of IP-based data traffic and applications on mobile devices is pushing the adoption of 4G technologies and fueling the migration to faster data rates. Service providers busy with migration strategies are upgrading existing networks as stop-gap measures to allow an all-IP based services platform. Carriers and handset vendors are differentiating their offerings by rolling out application portals while providing improved monetization and ARPU. User mobility is pushing the trend for “anywhere, anytime” data technology, while applications are driving the subscriber need.

Continuous advancement in technology powers much of the above, including additional overall data traffic and the migration to mobile connectivity/broadband. Applications are becoming pervasive, with the subscriber in control of the what, where and how. To continue to drive down costs, operators are moving to an all-IP core, attempting to reduce network complexity and in some cases altogether outsourcing the management of their networks.


With so much change happening in the network, the migration itself doesn’t occur over night. In the near future, network operators need to combine next generation systems and devices with a supportable hybrid network that interconnects various types of existing platforms. Because the network has simultaneously become both flatter and more complex, the journey toward a converged all-IP network comes with an entirely new set of network performance and management philosophies to be adopted and developed by IT organizations. To drive the need for maintaining and managing the experience of the subscriber, real-time monitoring, troubleshooting and provisioning of the network must be implemented strategically and methodically. Real-time monitoring of network traffic has proven to be crucial to diagnosing and analyzing network performance and services, and consequently the subscriber’s quality of experience (QoE).  

Out With the Old, In With the New – Problems Associated With Legacy Monitoring Schemes

Fragmented monitoring approaches increase problems associated with performance and complexity. Several of these problems have emerged with the growing complexity of data on the network and the accumulation of outdated network monitoring components. Due to the constant push for more efficient connectivity, traditional network monitoring approaches are inadequate for managing network components on enterprise and service provider infrastructures.

The aforementioned traditional approach improves the visibility of network performance by placing a series of tools into the network, but while the system solves some problems, new issues arise. IT managers are faced with the inability to access a particular point in a network with multiple tools, creating a “blind spot” on the network that can cause inefficient and difficult to solve troubleshooting transactions. Blind spots frequently occur with the type of overhead management utilized in legacy monitoring schemes.  Different sets of tools from different vendors dispersed throughout the network in various locations, each with individual management software inoperable with other vendors, can be a recipe for disaster. As network IT managers have limited accessibility to certain points on the network, they must manage an overflow of data. Monitoring costs are becoming increasingly more expensive as network management is becoming more inefficient. With rising costs and reduced ROI, profit is impacted by the lack of fast and efficient troubleshooting. The fragmented approach to network monitoring causes additional performance and complexity problems.


The “Flattening” Effect:  A Pathway for Network Intelligence Optimization to Save Time and Money

Telecom, enterprise and government network operators must develop a holistic and future minded strategy for network monitoring and network management. They must also keep in mind the key aspects of a traffic capture solution, such as the price-performance, diversity, agility and intelligent capabilities. Depending on future requirements, network operators should keep in mind existing macro trends when deciding network monitoring needs, such as “Flattening the Network”, technology development and economics.

The continuous growth of IP will accelerate the pace at which legacy systems are displaced by an all-IP network. The “flattening” effect will create more distributed IP components and broader ranges of IP services rolling out in the network, leading to more potential points of failure and increased complexity of the network. This opens opportunities for additional points of monitoring, in which the monitoring infrastructure should be “flat” and flexible across all parts of the network.
The Network Intelligence Optimization framework is paving a path for a smart network-monitoring infrastructure. To sustain the increase in speed, the traffic capture layer must continue at line rate in hardware, where a deeper awareness of packets and applications, as well as more dynamic handling is essential.


Today, network managers must do more with less, delivering tighter budget control while improving service delivery. Conversely, the network monitoring optimization framework allows organizations to migrate from a high initial CAPEX business model to a lower and variable CAPEX model in the network-monitoring component of the budget. With less, the network managers can do more in other areas such as network forensics, lawful intercepts, behavioral analysis, centralizing applications for compliance, etc. Managed service providers (MSP) have also become mainstream and are focusing on monetization of QoS/QoE, rather than solely on monitoring network elements and packets. The layered-approach to network monitoring is fundamental and crucial to enabling business model differentiation in such network environments.


About the Author

Terence Martin Breslin founded VSS Monitoring in October 2003. Under his leadership the company has grown into the world's leading innovator of Distributed Traffic Capture Systems™, Protector Series™ inline load balancers / speed converters for security appliances, and network TAPs. His vision of creating a distributed systems architecture to replace the practice of using only standalone TAPs for network traffic capture has changed the practice and potential of network analysis. By providing visibility of any link in even the largest network, He holds an MBA from Golden Gate University in San Francisco and a Bachelors degree in Computer Science from the National University of Ireland.

Andy Huckridge is a seasoned Telecom industry executive, currently serving as Director of Marketing at VSS Monitoring. He also serves as an independent Telecom consultant to Network Equipment Vendors (NEMs), Test Equipment Vendors, Service Providers focusing in the Test and Measurement industry. Andy has experience in overseeing various international projects in the Telecom / Security and Next-Generation space with leading companies.


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Cisco Declares Quarterly Dividend

The board of directors of Cisco declared a quarterly dividend of $0.06 per common share. The dividend will be paid on January 25, 2012 to all shareholders of record as of the close of business on January 5, 2012. http://www.cisco.com
  • Cisco paid the first dividend in its corporate history in April 2011.

Orange Moldova Upgrades with Tellabs

Orange Moldova, which serves more than 2 million customers in Moldova is expanding its current Tellabs 8600 Managed Edge System deployment in mobile backhaul. The service provider will add the Tellabs 8609 Access Switch as a cell site gateway and small aggregation router for 2G and 3G voice and data traffic. The 1RU Tellabs 8609 switch, which can be used for cell and aggregation sites, provides increased Ethernet switching capabilities, offers a rich set of interface modules and boasts high port-density for 3G and beyond.
http://www.tellabs.com

Telstra Secures Licences in Singapore, Japan, India

Telstra has secured new operating licences in Singapore and Japan, allowing it to own infrastructure facilities and be directly responsible for services delivered to customers locally in both countries. The announcement follows the recent award of three licences to provide customers in India with international long-distance telecommunications and ISP services.


In Singapore, Telstra has secured the licence to own and operate telecommunications infrastructure such as voice and data networks, systems and facilities locally. It will also enable Telstra to build the local backbone required to support its plans for new cable submarine capacity to Singapore.


In Japan, Telstra Japan K.K. has been approved to own and operate large scale telecoms circuits and facilities in multiple cities and prefectures in Japan, along with products and services delivered over those facilities and networks.


In India, the licence will see Telstra begin with services in seven cities - Bangalore, Calcutta, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune . Mumbai and Chennai will be Telstra’s Indian international gateways connecting into its international backbone network, providing customers with direct routes into networks in Europe and Asia.
http://www.telstra.com

TI Moves from NYST to NASDAQ

Texas Instruments (TI) (NYSE: TXN) its stock exchange listing to The NASDAQ Global Select Market from The New York Stock Exchange, effective January 1, 2012. TI shares will begin trading as a NASDAQ-listed security on January 3, 2012, and will continue to trade under the symbol TXN. http://www.ti.com

TIA Releases M2M Smart Device Communications Reference Architecture

The Telecommunications Industry Association's (TIA) released a specification defining a Smart Device Communications Reference Architecture for machine-to-machine (M2M) applications.


The TIA-4940 Smart Device Communications Reference Architecture standard addresses common requirements and interoperability of essential intelligent/smart devices across industries. It will work across both wired and wireless transport layers and take advantage of IP-enabled applications covering different types of vertical markets.


"We are very pleased that the committee developed this M2M Standard quickly with effective collaboration with other international Standards Development Organizations (SDOs) throughout the process," said Cheryl Blum, TIA Vice-President for Technology and Standards.


Copies of TIA-4940, as well as all TIA standards, are available for purchase onlinehttp://global.ihs.com
http://www.tianow.org

Cisco Declares Quarterly Dividend

The board of directors of Cisco declared a quarterly dividend of $0.06 per common share. The dividend will be paid on January 25, 2012 to all shareholders of record as of the close of business on January 5, 2012. http://www.cisco.com
  • Cisco paid the first dividend in its corporate history in April 2011.

Orange Moldova Upgrades with Tellabs

Orange Moldova, which serves more than 2 million customers in Moldova is expanding its current Tellabs 8600 Managed Edge System deployment in mobile backhaul. The service provider will add the Tellabs 8609 Access Switch as a cell site gateway and small aggregation router for 2G and 3G voice and data traffic. The 1RU Tellabs 8609 switch, which can be used for cell and aggregation sites, provides increased Ethernet switching capabilities, offers a rich set of interface modules and boasts high port-density for 3G and beyond.
http://www.tellabs.com

Telstra Secures Licences in Singapore, Japan, India

Telstra has secured new operating licences in Singapore and Japan, allowing it to own infrastructure facilities and be directly responsible for services delivered to customers locally in both countries. The announcement follows the recent award of three licences to provide customers in India with international long-distance telecommunications and ISP services.


In Singapore, Telstra has secured the licence to own and operate telecommunications infrastructure such as voice and data networks, systems and facilities locally. It will also enable Telstra to build the local backbone required to support its plans for new cable submarine capacity to Singapore.


In Japan, Telstra Japan K.K. has been approved to own and operate large scale telecoms circuits and facilities in multiple cities and prefectures in Japan, along with products and services delivered over those facilities and networks.


In India, the licence will see Telstra begin with services in seven cities - Bangalore, Calcutta, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune . Mumbai and Chennai will be Telstra’s Indian international gateways connecting into its international backbone network, providing customers with direct routes into networks in Europe and Asia.
http://www.telstra.com

TI Moves from NYST to NASDAQ

Texas Instruments (TI) (NYSE: TXN) its stock exchange listing to The NASDAQ Global Select Market from The New York Stock Exchange, effective January 1, 2012. TI shares will begin trading as a NASDAQ-listed security on January 3, 2012, and will continue to trade under the symbol TXN. http://www.ti.com

TIA Releases M2M Smart Device Communications Reference Architecture

The Telecommunications Industry Association's (TIA) released a specification defining a Smart Device Communications Reference Architecture for machine-to-machine (M2M) applications.


The TIA-4940 Smart Device Communications Reference Architecture standard addresses common requirements and interoperability of essential intelligent/smart devices across industries. It will work across both wired and wireless transport layers and take advantage of IP-enabled applications covering different types of vertical markets.


"We are very pleased that the committee developed this M2M Standard quickly with effective collaboration with other international Standards Development Organizations (SDOs) throughout the process," said Cheryl Blum, TIA Vice-President for Technology and Standards.


Copies of TIA-4940, as well as all TIA standards, are available for purchase onlinehttp://global.ihs.com
http://www.tianow.org

Metaswitch Powers EarthLink Complete Business Suite

Metaswitch Networks is powering the multimedia telephony features of EarthLink's new launched "Complete" suite of business voice, data and Internet solutions. The offering builds on Metaswitch’s MetaSphere Multimedia Telephony Application Server (MTAS) to provide the latest in hosted PBX and SIP trunking services over EarthLink’s state-of-the-art IP infrastructure.


Metaswitch’s voice portal capabilities are also integrated into EarthLink’s myLink customer portal, offering its clients easy access to a ubiquitous, cross-platform, unified messaging, call control and self service interface that enables them to access, direct and upgrade their entire communications experience. http://www.metaswitch.com

ADTRAN Delivers Cell-site Optimized Wavelength Services

ADTRAN has enhanced its Total Access 5000 ONE system for delivering both wavelength and Ethernet switching separation. This enables carriers to deliver both mobile backhaul and residential broadband without risking quality of service (QoS) issues symptomatic of many multi-service solutions.


The ADTRAN ONE solution eliminates QoS impacting network bottlenecks by delivering MEF-certified, wavelength separated Ethernet services to residential customers, business customers and cell sites over the same network infrastructure.


ADTRAN said this capability ensures important service isolation for each individual mobile network operator that may share a single cell site or simultaneously offer residential broadband and wholesale services. In addition, ADTRAN’s Advanced Operational Environment (AOE) Service Monitor solution is a non-service affecting portal-based tool that provides intuitive, proactive reporting of SLA compliance status including customer bandwidth, and ITU-T Y.1731-based performance statistics for one-way frame delay, delay variation, and frame loss. http://www.adtran.com

Open Networking Foundation Updates its SDN Spec

The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) completed the first update to its specifications for OpenFlow Software Defined Networking (SDN) since its launch in March 2011.
Software Defined Networking using the OpenFlow standard addresses the challenges faced by service providers, data-center operators, and enterprises in aligning the network with an increasingly dynamic and customized computing infrastructure. OpenFlow defines a communication protocol between a logically centralized control plane and the network’s data delivery plane, together with a standardized network management interface potentially allowing, for example, a data-center network to be made as flexible and responsive as the virtual servers that it supports.


OpenFlow Switch Specification Version 1.2 builds on Stanford University’s Version 1.1 in a number of ways, including:


Support for IPv6. In addition to the previous support for IPv4, MPLS, and L2 headers, OpenFlow 1.2 now supports matching on IPv6 source address, destination address, protocol number, traffic class, ICMPv6 type, ICMPv6 code, IPv6 neighbor discovery header fields, and IPv6 flow labels.


Support for extensible matches, addressing a larger number of parameters and providing far greater flexibility for current and future protocols.


Support for experimenter extensions through dedicated fields and code points assigned by ONF, facilitating experimentation and fine-tuning by a growing population of developers across academia and industry.


Membership in ONF has now passed the 50 mark. NTT Communications will join the ONF Board of Directors.


“NTT strongly supports the ONF’s goals and has deeply engaged technical experts actively contributing to ONF working groups, underlining NTT’s strong commitment to developing and deploying the OpenFlow standard.�?
"ONF continues to grow globally, with Korea Telecom and Spirent Communications our latest members�? says Dan Pitt, ONF’s Executive Director. “There is a shared vision of OpenFlow as the vital foundation upon which a dynamic, policy-based orchestration layer is being created – allowing processes to be defined on the fly and deployed automatically to deliver agile, scalable cloud services to a satisfy a wide range of user needs in every geography." http://www.opennetworking.org

WhiteSpace Alliance Sets Charter

A new WhiteSpace Alliance has been formed with the goal of enabling the emerging worldwide WhiteSpace ecosystem to deliver cost-effective broadband solutions, and support products and services that use WhiteSpace spectrum.


The Alliance is supporting IEEE 802.22 technology, which promises broadband wireless access over a large area up to 100 km from the transmitter. This technology delivers up to 29 Mbps per TV channel, and with over 40 available channels can deliver more than 1 Gbps capacity.


Initial members include AmeriSys, BAE Systems, ETRI, NICT and RelayServices. http://www.whitespacealliance.org




  • In July 2011, The IEEE published the 802.22 standard for Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRANs) using the favorable transmission characteristics of the VHF and UHF TV bands. 802.22 enables broadband wireless access over a large area up to 100 km from the transmitter. The standard specifies up to 22 Mbps per channel without interfering with reception of existing TV broadcast stations, using the so-called white spaces between the occupied TV channels.


    IEEE 802.22 incorporates advanced cognitive radio capabilities including dynamic spectrum access, incumbent database access, accurate geolocation techniques, spectrum sensing, regulatory domain dependent policies, spectrum etiquette, and coexistence for optimal use of the available spectrum. It operates generally in the 54-862 MHz range. For the United States, it specifies the following VHF / UHF Bands54 – 60, 76 – 88, 174 – 216, 470 - 608 and 614 –698 MHz => Total of 282 MHz or 47 Channels.


  • In September 2010, The FCC issued an order that opens up vacant airwaves between TV channels for new unlicensed applications such as "super Wi-Fi." Specifically, a Second Memorandum Opinion and Order (Second MO&O) resolves numerous legal and technical issues regarding unlicensed spectrum usage. Notably, the Order eliminates the requirement that TV bands devices that incorporate geo-location and database access must also include sensing technology to detect the signals of TV stations and low-power auxiliary service stations (wireless microphones). It also requires wireless microphone users who seek to register in the TV bands databases to certify that they will use all available channels from 7 through 51 prior to requesting registration. Requests to register in the database will be public, thus allowing interested parties to weigh in on any given request.


    The FCC order also includes steps to ensure that incumbent services are protected from interference from the use of white spaces in various ways. This includes reserving two vacant UHF channels for wireless microphones and other low power auxiliary service devices in all areas of the country.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

NSN Supplies Circuit Switched Fallback to KDDI

Nokia Siemens Networks is implementing its Circuit Switched Fallback (CSFB) technology to enable CDMA and LTE technologies to work together in KDDI’s network in Japan.


Nokia Siemens Networks’ CDMA-LTE CSFB solution is implemented via software on the existing CDMA 1X system, which interfaces with KDDI’s LTE network. Exhaustive trials of end-to-end CSFB have already been successfully conducted and the nationwide deployment will be completed by mid 2012. NSN said this ensures readiness of end-to-end CSFB functionality in anticipation of KDDI’s commercial LTE network launch later in 2012.


"CDMA is recognized for its high voice quality and high call capacity,�? said Scott Mottonen, head of the CDMA/LTE business line at Nokia Siemens Networks. “Until LTE technology matures and Voice over LTE (VoLTE) has been optimized, CDMA will fully meet subscribers’ expectations while increasing KDDI’s return on network investment. "http://www.nokiasiemensnetworks.com

Government Agencies Find Harmful Interference from LightSquared

Department of Defense and Department of Transportation have concluded that LightSquared signals cause harmful interference to the majority of tested general purpose GPS receivers. Final analysis of data from last month's test will take several more weeks to complete. Then a report will be filed with the NTIA and FCC.


Separate analysis by the Federal Aviation Administration also found interference with a flight safety system designed to warn pilots of approaching terrain.


LightSquared's CEO, Sanjiv Ahuja, issued the following statement: "We are pleased that the statement issued by the National Space-Based PNT Executive Committee, chaired by the Department of Defense and the Department of Transportation, validates LightSquared's compatibility with the nation's 300 million cellular phones. While we are eager to continue to work with the FAA on addressing the one remaining issue regarding terrain avoidance systems, we profoundly disagree with the conclusions drawn with respect to general navigation devices.


Separately, LightSquared filed an amended proposal with the FCC offering to limits its power on the ground by (1) eliminating the final phase of increasing power to -24 dbm and (2) extending the period during which we will maintain power at -30 dbm to January 1,2016. http://www.dot.gov/affairs/2011/dot16411.htmlhttp://www.lightsquared.com

Huawei and Indonesia's Telkomsel Open Innovation Centre

Huawei and ,Telkomsel, the leading operator in Indonesia, opened a new innovation centre and LTE demonstration in Bandung. The R&D facility focuses on high definition video, FTP throughput, live high-speed Internet, and digital shopping mall demonstrations. The LTE demonstration is showing Huawei's SingleRAN LTE solution delivering downlink data rates of up to 71.4 Mbps with 10 MHz bandwidth.


Telkomsel is deploying Huawei's SingleRAN in its network
http://www.huawei.com

Broadcom Raises its Q4 2011 Guidance

Broadcom raised its Q4 2011 financial guidance, citing strong shipments. The new guidance:

  • Net Revenue: Increased to the high end of the prior range to approximately $1.8 billion.

  • Product Gross Margin (GAAP and Non-GAAP): Increased to the high end of the prior range to roughly flat sequentially.

  • R&D Plus SG&A Expenses (GAAP and Non-GAAP): Estimated to be approximately $5 million favorable on a GAAP basis and at the midpoint of prior guidance on a non-GAAP basis due to slower than anticipated hiring ramps and certain credits in the period.

  • Ending Cash & Marketable Securities: Increase sequentially to approximately $5.1 billion on strong cash flow and a completed debt offering.


"Broadcom's Q4 is coming in stronger than expected driven by solid shipments and tight operational management," said Scott McGregor, President and Chief Executive Officer of Broadcom.


Broadcom held its 2011 Analyst Day Conference on December 14. An archived webcast is online.
http://www.broadcom.com

Ericsson's Chief Brand Officer Steps Down

Cesare Avenia, Ericsson's Chief Brand Officer, is leaving the company this month. No replacement will be named.
http://www.ericsson.com