Wednesday, February 17, 2021

DARPA teams with Linux Foundation to create secure open source

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) reached an agreement with The Linux Foundation to create open source software that accelerates United States government technology research and development innovation.

Specifically, DARPA and the LF will create a broad collaboration umbrella (US Government Open Programmable Secure (US GOV OPS) that allows United States Government projects, their ecosystem, and open community to participate in accelerating innovation and security in the areas of 5G, Edge, AI, Standards, Programmability, and IOT among other technologies. The project formation encourages ecosystem players to support US Government initiatives to create the latest in technology software.

The new US GOV OPS umbrella will include the Open Programmable Secure- 5G (OPS-5G) program as its first project, currently in formation with the help of DARPA, the US Navy and additional performers. The goal of OPS-5G is to create open source software and systems enabling secure end to end 5G and follow-on mobile networks. OPS-5G will create capabilities to address feature velocity in open source software, mitigating large scale Botnet of Things (BoT), network slicing on suspect gear, and adaptive adversaries operating at scale.

The project will launch as a standard open source project with neutral governance and a charter similar to other projects within the Linux Foundation. Additionally, the agreement enables collaboration with upstream and downstream communities such as LF Networking, LF Edge, and Zephyr, among others, to build on a secure code base for use by the US Government.

“DARPA’s use of open source software in the Open Programmable Secure 5G (OPS-5G) program leverages transparency, portability and open access inherent in this distribution model,” said Dr. Jonathan Smith, DARPA Information Innovation Office Program Manager. “Transparency enables advanced software tools and systems to be applied to the code base, while portability and open access will result in decoupling hardware and software ecosystems, enabling innovations by more entities across more technology areas.” 

“We are eager to ally with DARPA and its intent to accelerate secure, open source innovation and US competitiveness across breakthrough technologies,” said Arpit Joshipura, general manager, Networking, Edge, & IOT, the Linux Foundation. “This partnership enables transformational change across open software and systems, leveraging the best shared resources across the ecosystem.” 

http://www.usgovops.org

DARPA’s Electronics Resurgence Initiative signs Arm

Arm today announced a three-year partnership agreement with the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), establishing an access framework to all commercially available Arm technology.

Under DARPA’s Electronics Resurgence Initiative, the research community that supports DARPA’s programs will gain access to Arm’s IP, tools and support programs.

“The span of DARPA research activity opens up a huge range of opportunities for future technological innovation,” said Rene Haas, president, IP Products Group, Arm. “Our expanded DARPA partnership will provide them with access to the broadest range of Arm technology to develop compute solutions supported by the world’s largest ecosystem of tools, services and software.”

“DARPA’s programs within the Microsystems Technology Office (MTO) focus on the most advanced challenges in microelectronics; equipping our community with best in class technologies is essential not only for break-through scientific and engineering advances, but also for improved transition into military and commercial applications,” stated Serge Leef, who leads design automation and secure hardware programs in MTO.

https://www.darpa.mil/work-with-us/electronics-resurgence-initiative

Arista completes 400G ZR testing over Microsoft's testbed

Arista Networks completed interoperability testing between multiple 400G ZR suppliers over Microsoft’s 120km open line system testbed. 

Arista said the multi-vendor testing sets the foundation for a healthy, interoperable, coherent optics ecosystem. 

Hacene Chaouch, Distinguished Engineer at Arista Networks commented, "We are very pleased with the demonstrated performance of the 400G ZR transceiver modules. Being able to seamlessly support modules from multiple 400G-ZR vendors on our standard routing platforms constitutes a significant advancement in the DCI space."

Jamie Gaudette, Principal Engineering Manager of Microsoft’s Backbone Network said, “We are pleased with the progress on 400G ZR. Thanks to our collaboration with OIF, we’ve achieved multi-vendor interoperation and cost effective 400G transport, allowing Microsoft to offer more bandwidth to our customers and accelerate our datacenter expansion.”

https://www.arista.com/en/company/news/press-release/12161-pr-20210217

Ekinops tests 5G business use cases with Orange

Ekinops successfully completed its first 5G business connectivity tests with Orange Business Services in their Orange Labs environment. Ekinops and Orange Business Services are currently working together to have packaged solutions ready for customers later in 2021.

For these tests, Ekinops used its 5G capable OneAccess router based on OneOS6, the user-friendly modular software solution that enables a range of built-in services for greater modularity. This solution is capable of supporting network functions, such as routing, firewall, SD-WAN and SBC (session border control), among others.


“The results of this first test within the Orange Labs are very promising. We have been able to assess in real-life conditions the ability of our router to use 5G as a primary connection for enterprises,” said Vincent Munière, Ekinops group CTO and VP R&D. “We are privileged to be able to work alongside our longstanding partner Orange Business Services and its innovation teams to perfect our new generation of products, including 5G and software defined networks,” he added.

“As the market expects a lot from 5G with 10 times more capacity, 10 times less latency and 10 times more density, this test provided one more opportunity to check the reality of 5G connectivity for WAN solutions” shared Franck Morales, VP Marketing, Connectivity BU, at Orange Business Services. “This successful outcome confirms once again the many opportunities we see with 5G for enterprises.”


Keysight enables first 5G NR data connection based on 3GPP R16

Keysight Technologies' 5G test solutions were used to establish the industry’s first 5G new radio (NR) data connection based on 3GPP Release 16 specifications (Rel-16).

3GPP Rel-16 introduces new capabilities, including ultra-reliable and low latency communications (URLLC). When combined with network slicing, these capabilities support enterprises, industrial internet of things (IIoT) applications and private 5G deployments. The new release also helps public safety organizations deliver advanced mission critical services and the automotive industry integrate advanced connectivity features in vehicles and infrastructure, making transportation efficient and roads safer.

Keysight’s Protocol R&D Toolset enables chipset and device manufacturers to seamlessly prototype designs using tests that verify 5G NR signaling protocols. With full access to testing parameters across layer one, two and three, the Protocol R&D Toolset allows developers to flexibly create and execute test cases, debug errors and fully analyze results in sub-7GHz and mmWave spectrum, for both non-standalone (NSA) and standalone (SA) mode.

“Keysight is helping 5G device makers to confidently deliver products based on the latest 3GPP 5G new radio standard, which will unlock many new 5G opportunities beyond traditional mobile broadband services,” said Mosaab Abughalib, senior director, engineering at Keysight Technologies. “Establishing the industry’s first 5G data connection based on 3GPP Rel-16 enables chipset and device vendors to take full advantage of 5G NR, resulting in improved efficiencies in transportation, logistics and manufacturing, as well as providing better cell coverage and connection speeds for consumers.”



CyrusOne posts revenue of $268 million, gains from hyperscalers

CyrusOne reported Q4 2020 revenue of $268.4 million for the fourth quarter, compared to $253.9 million for the same period in 2019, an increase of 6%. The increase in revenue was driven primarily by a 10% increase in occupied CSF and additional interconnection services, partially offset by the Company’s receipt of $4.7 million in lease termination fees in the fourth quarter of 2019.

“The fourth quarter bookings included a significant contribution from our hyperscale customers and more than $30 million in annualized revenue signed across our U.S. markets, closing out a record leasing year for the company with nearly $160 million in annualized revenue signed,” said Bruce W. Duncan, president and chief executive officer of CyrusOne. “The $101 million revenue backlog positions us well for continued growth, and we have a strong balance sheet with more than $1.7 billion in available liquidity, including nearly $500 million in available forward equity, to support this growth. We are also excited to expand into France with a fully pre-leased data center, extending our footprint into another key European market and further enhancing our offering for our customers.”


Highlights

  • Leased 31 megawatts (“MW”) and 162,000 colocation square feet (“CSF”) in the fourth quarter, totaling $49.3 million in annualized GAAP revenue
  • – For full year 2020, signed leases totaling 101 MW and 616,000 CSF, representing $156.8 million in annualized GAAP revenue(1), the highest annual leasing total in the Company’s history
  • Backlog of approximately $101 million in annualized GAAP revenue as of the end of the fourth quarter representing approximately $830 million in total contract value
  • Expansion into Paris, France, one of the leading data center markets in Europe, with a 25-year lease on a 13-acre site and development of the first phase of a fully pre-leased 


Toshiba intros 18TB HDDs

Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage announced its 18TB MG09 Series HDD with a new energy-assisted magnetic recording technology. 

The new drives feature Toshiba’s third-generation, 9-disk helium-sealed design and Toshiba’s  Flux Control – Microwave Assisted Magnetic Recording (FC-MAMR) technology, to advance Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR) density to 2TB per disk, achieving a total capacity of 18TB.

Sample shipments of 18TB MG09 Series HDD to customers are expected to start sequentially at the end of March 2021.

“Toshiba’s new 18TB MG09 Series delivers new levels of storage density and power efficiency to our cost-conscious cloud-scale and storage solutions customers. Our HDD technology is able to achieve our customers’ critical TCO objectives at a cost of pennies per GB,” said Shuji Takaoka, General Manager of the Storage Products Sales & Marketing Division at Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation. “Our 3rd generation 9-disk helium-sealed design provides a field-tested foundation for achieving a massive 18TB capacity. The addition of Toshiba’s innovative FC-MAMR technology advances CMR capacity to 18TB, delivering compatibility with the widest range of applications and operating environments.”


Nokia and Elisa target private 5G in Finland

Nokia and Elisa, a telecom operator based in Finland, will partner in a joint go-to-market alliance to drive private 5G and LTE deployments. 

Under the agreement, Nokia and Elisa will utilize new and existing radio network infrastructure to deploy mission-critical, industrial-grade private networks with Finnish businesses. The collaboration will leverage the recent agreement that sees Nokia continue its long-standing relationship with Elisa as strategic supply partner of 5G RAN nationwide.


Timo Katajisto, Executive Vice President, Corporate Customers, Elisa, said: “A growing number of organizations are now investing in private mobile networks. With this partnership, the two leading Finnish telecommunication companies join forces to create a dream team that will take our combined private mobile network enterprise offering to a new level. Elisa and Nokia are global forerunners in network quality and 5G, and we have already begun joint deployment of both 5G and LTE private mobile networks in different industries and use cases for Finnish enterprises.”

Ribbon hits Q4 sales of $244 million, growing IP Optical traction

Ribbon Communications reported Q4 2020 revenue of $244 million, compared to $161 million for the fourth quarter of 2019, an increase of 52%.  Revenue for 2020 was $844 million, compared to $563 million in 2019, an increase of 50%.  Approximately $89 million of the year-over-year revenue increase in the fourth quarter and $261 million of the increase in 2020 was attributable to the Company's acquisition of ECI Telecom Group, which closed on March 3, 2020.

"We are very pleased with our fourth quarter results, in particular our second consecutive quarter of record adjusted EBITDA as we benefitted from strong sales and gross margins, along with efficiencies in operating expense," noted Bruce McClelland, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ribbon Communications.  "We are excited to carry this momentum forward in 2021 as we continue to focus on growing our IP Optical sales and improving overall profitability."

Highlights

  • In addition to the company's first IP Optical win in North America with a Top 4 cable MSO, Ribbon earned new IP Optical business with 5 regional telco carriers
  • Closed significant new orders with North American Tier-1 service providers 
  • Revenue from customers outside the United States increased to 60% of total sales in 4Q20; international highlights include:
  • New network transformation project with a Tier-1 carrier in CALA using new virtualized C20 Call Session Controller
  • Secured the first large-scale OTN deployment for metro access for a defense customer in Europe 
  • Implementing metro optical networks globally with Telecom Italia and collaborating with them to win new regional public, private, and enterprise IP optical opportunities in Europe
  • Signed over $10 million in Cloud and Edge deals in Japan with Tier-1 service providers
  • 4Q20 India sales consistent with those in 3Q20 with improvements in several accounts



https://investors.ribboncommunications.com/press-and-events/events-and-presentations

Ribbon to sell its QualiTech testing division to Hermon Labs

Hermon Laboratories, a leading provider of testing, measurement and certification services, will acquire the testing and standardization business conducted by Ribbon's QualiTech division. Financial terms were not disclosed.


QualiTech operates as an independent division of former ECI Telecom (now part of Ribbon), providing high-quality testing and standardization laboratory services supporting both the company's product development activities and external customers. Under the agreement, Hermon Laboratories will continue to provide testing and standardization services to Ribbon anchored by the strong team of QualiTech employees, who are expected to transfer to Hermon Laboratories.

"The sale of the QualiTech business aligns with our strategy of increasing our focus on our core IP Optical Networks and Cloud and Edge businesses," said Bruce McClelland, President and CEO of Ribbon. "The agreement allows Ribbon to maintain the high level of testing and standardization services provided by the same dedicated professionals that have been delivering these services for years. They will simply be transferring to the Hermon Laboratories team."

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Colt tests quantum-based super-encryption with ADVA

Colt Technology Services has successfully conducted a field trial of quantum-secured transport using ADVA's FSP 3000 platform with ConnectGuard Layer 1 encryption technology. 

The trial, which was conducted over Colt’s deployed metro network in Frankfurt, utilized quantum key distribution (QKD) to super-encrypt live data traffic. ADVA’s partner ID Quantique also played a key role in the trial. Colt harnessed the ADVA FSP 3000, which receives quantum keys generated by ID Quantique’s QKD technology. The QKD provides quantum random bit strings. These keys are used as an additional entropy source for the ADVA encryption solution, operating at line speeds of 100Gbit/s. The solution is the first commercial high-speed optical networking product to feature a dedicated interface for quantum keys based on the ETSI key delivery standard.

“With quantum computers on the horizon, it’s crucial to stay one step ahead of the hackers. This trial is a major step towards the next generation of cryptographic infrastructure and takes us closer to safeguarding our customers’ information from tomorrow’s threats,” said Oktay Tekin, director, sales engineers, DACH, Colt Technology Services. “Businesses across the world depend on the speed, reliability and robust security of our services to operate effectively and with complete peace of mind. By conducting this trial with ADVA to harness QKD technologies, we’re exploring how to protect against unprecedented challenges further down the line.”

“Our FSP 3000 ConnectGuard encryption solution ensures maximum security as well as high capacity and low latency. In recent years, it has won a fierce reputation for protecting service provider and enterprise networks across the globe. Now, this trial of QKD-secure transport is proving how vital our technology will be even in the post-quantum era,” commented Uli Schlegel, director, product line management, ADVA. “Colt’s trial shows that it’s now possible to secure high-speed connectivity over deployed operational networks against tomorrow’s quantum computer attacks. It’s a significant milestone for Colt’s enterprise customers. From sensitive financial information to valuable intellectual property, their data will soon be shielded from the cybercriminals of the future.”

ADVA supports Quantum-Secure VPN (QuaSiModO) project

ADVA is playing a key role in a unique research initiative extending post-quantum security to VPN networks. The company has supplied its ADVA FSP 150 with ConnectGuard Ethernet encryption for the Quantum-Secure VPN Modules and Operation Modes (QuaSiModO) project, which is being conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute of Applied and Integrated Security, the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich and genua GmbH. Funding is provided by the German Federal...

ADVA FSP 3000 powers UK’s first quantum network

ADVA's FSP 3000 platform is powering a metro transport system in the city of Cambridge that is being used for the UK's first quantum network. The project, which is conducted by the UK National Quantum Technologies Programme, super-encrypts data using quantum key distribution (QKD) for complete and long-term cryptographic data security. ADVA said the openness of its ADVA FSP 3000 platform, which can accept keys from third-party systems utilizing...

Europes's OPENQKD uses ADVA for quantum key distribution

The OPENQKD project, whose mission is to create and trial a secure communication network across Europe based on quantum key distribution (QKD), will leverage ADVA's FSP 3000 and FSP 150 platforms. ADVA will provide optical and Ethernet encryptors as well as open line systems for multiple testbed locations. OPENQKD, which is funded by the European Commission, seeks to accelerate the commercial adoption of QKD technology and to promote interoperability...


Juniper intros cloud-native Paragon Automation for service assurance

Juniper Networks introduced a modular portfolio of cloud-native software applications that deliver closed-loop automation in 5G and multicloud environments.

Juniper said its Paragon Automation suite is designed to translate business intent into real-world performance across the lifecycle of a network and services. The goal is to help operations teams to eliminate manual tasks and processes, assuring that users have a consistent, high-quality experience throughout the life of their service.

Paragon Automation combines active test agents, streaming telemetry and machine learning with closed-loop remediation. 

Highlights:

  • Network-aware automation, including capabilities such as real-time awareness and visualization of network topology and integrated support for segment routing, MPLS and network slicing across all network domains. The solution provides multi-layer root-cause analysis to visualize, analyze and map service issues down to the device and from the device back up to the service. It extends automation across the entire Layer-2 through Layer-7 network stack, across all domains and clouds and the full network and service lifecycle.
  • Network-tailored machine learning fueled by true algorithmic machine learning and network analytics. It collects, aggregates and analyzes huge volumes of real-time telemetry data to provide a multidimensional view of device, network and service health. And it uses diverse ML algorithms to detect anomalies and outliers and make accurate predictions about future device and network behavior.
  • Cloud-native agility and resiliency: Paragon Automation can be used as a cloud-hosted SaaS solution, hosted on-premises or in a public cloud environment. And it can be deployed in redundant node clusters within a single data center or across multiple clouds in a high-availability, highly reliable scale-out architecture.

Some of the capabilities are developed in partnership with Anuta Networks.

https://blogs.juniper.net/en-us/service-provider-transformation/unleash-experience-first-networking-with-juniper-paragon-automation


Juniper to acquire Netrounds for service assurance platform

Juniper Networks agreed to acquire Netrounds, which offers a programmable, software-based active test and service assurance platform for fixed and mobile networks. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Netround, which was founded in 2007 and is based in Lulea, Sweden, focuses on lifecycle service assurance. Its vendor-agnostic platform is offered as on-demand as a SaaS solution or on-premise for NFV deployment. Netrounds’ traffic-generating test agents allow OSS and NFV orchestrators to remotely test, monitor, and assure their network service KPIs and SLAs.

Juniper said Netrounds will enhance its automated WAN solutions to further simplify operations for service providers and ensure positive end-user experiences. 

“End-user expectations for a consistently high quality of experience for services delivered over IP networks in the cloud era are extremely high, and the onset of 5G will only accelerate this. Service providers are increasingly looking to differentiate themselves by looking beyond offering basic connectivity and focusing on the quality assurance of their services,” said Manoj Leelanivas, chief product officer, Juniper Networks. “Today’s announcement and plan to bring Netrounds into Juniper will fully automate the complexities of testing and actively monitoring those customer service experiences at scale, a crucial step to staying competitive in today’s dynamic market.”

“Today, end users are often the first to discover service quality problems, as traditional assurance solutions primarily focus on passive device health instead of service quality,” said Mats Nordlund, CEO and Co-Founder of Netrounds. “Combined with Juniper Networks’ sophisticated network automation solutions, service and cloud providers are now able to rapidly deliver software-defined network services with guaranteed end-to-end service quality. For our customers, this is a key success factor when rolling out solutions in dynamic environments built on 5G network slicing, Kubernetes, SD-WAN and hybrid-cloud. We are thrilled to be joining Juniper to provide higher levels of automated assurance to complex networks.”

Keysight debuts 400GE test system covering PAM4 and 100GE NRZ

Keysight Technologies introduced its new AresONE-S 400GE test system for validating complex, mixed 400 gigabit Ethernet (GE) and lower-speed networks and devices.

The AresONE-S 400GE test system, which is aimed at network equipment manufacturers and data center operators, provides 6.4 Tbps load and stress traffic to detect and debug data transmission errors at multiple Ethernet speeds. Further, AresONE-S allows multiple systems to be synchronized together to test 25.6 Tbps networking devices and equipment using a single test system.

Highlights of Keysight’s AresONE-S test system:

  • An ultra-high-density, 2 rack unit (RU) fixed chassis to deliver optimal rack space footprint.
  • The IxNetwork software application, a Layer 2 and 3 protocol emulation platform that runs end-to-end tests with an extensive list of networking protocols and data plane traffic to test network infrastructure performance.
  • A single test platform for all seven 400GE PAM4 and 100GE NRZ speeds: 400/200/100/50GE PAM4 and 100/50/40/25/10GE NRZ to test all speeds and FEC methods to future-proof investments.

AresONE-S fixed chassis is available in two options, the AresONE-S-400GE QSFP-DD High-Density 16-Port Test System and AresONE-S-400GE QSFP-DD High-Density 8-Port Test System. Customers can start lower-port-count testing by purchasing 4 ports in the 8-port chassis, or 8-ports in the 16-port chassis. Keysight’s “pay-as-you-grow” model enables customers to add ports and software options in the field to support future test requirements.

Data center operators have widely deployed mature 100GE non-return-to-zero (NRZ)-based technologies.  Keysight notes that higher Ethernet speeds, such as 400GE, create new mixed signaling and forward error correction (FEC) implementations in data center networks, as well as multi-rate speed environments. The transition from NRZ to pulse amplitude modulation level-4 (PAM4) requires testing of both types of encoding.

“Data center operators are dealing with complex environments containing multiple signaling technologies and Ethernet speeds that continue to evolve,” said Ram Periakaruppan, vice president and general manager, Keysight’s Network Test and Security Solutions group. “AresONE-S doubles the port density of any other 400GE test platform and delivers the flexibility our customers need to verify their networks and network equipment, while scaling to meet future requirements.”

https://www.keysight.com/us/en/about/newsroom/news-releases/2021/0216-nr21016-keysight-delivers-first-16-port-400ge-test-system-t.html?akamai-feo=off

Samsung introduces a new type of High Bandwidth Memory

Samsung Electronics Co. introduced a new High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) integrated with artificial intelligence (AI) processing power.. 

The new processing-in-memory (PIM) architecture is designed to accelerate large-scale processing in data centers, high performance computing (HPC) systems and AI-enabled mobile applications.

Kwangil Park, senior vice president of Memory Product Planning at Samsung Electronics stated, "Our groundbreaking HBM-PIM is the industry's first programmable PIM solution tailored for diverse AI-driven workloads such as HPC, training and inference. We plan to build upon this breakthrough by further collaborating with AI solution providers for even more advanced PIM-powered applications."

Samsung said most of today's computing systems are based on the von Neumann architecture, which uses separate processor and memory units to carry out millions of intricate data processing tasks. This sequential processing approach requires data to constantly move back and forth, resulting in a system-slowing bottleneck especially when handling ever-increasing volumes of data.

Instead, the HBM-PIM brings processing power directly to where the data is stored by placing a DRAM-optimized AI engine inside each memory bank — a storage sub-unit — enabling parallel processing and minimizing data movement. When applied to Samsung's existing HBM2 Aquabolt solution, the new architecture is able to deliver over twice the system performance while reducing energy consumption by more than 70%. The HBM-PIM also does not require any hardware or software changes, allowing faster integration into existing systems.


Verizon to acquire Austrian-based incubed IT for robot automation

Verizon agreed to acquire incubed IT GmbH, a privately-held company based in Hart bei Graz, Austria. Financial terms were not disclosed.

incubed IT's software platform offers autonomous navigation tools to administer, manage and optimize mixed fleets of robots in industrial settings. The software enables robots to localize and navigate autonomously and can be easily integrated into nearly any mobile robot.

Verizon said incubed IT’s autonomous software will enable enterprise customers to gain new efficiencies as they scale their autonomous mobile robot fleets using 5G.

“This acquisition further demonstrates Verizon’s commitment to developing new and innovative businesses and use cases leveraging the power of 5G,” said Rima Qureshi, Chief Strategy Officer at Verizon. “Mobile robot orchestration is a real and emerging challenge faced by enterprises today. By integrating incubed IT’s autonomous software with Verizon’s 5G platform, we will have the ability to power robotic automation at scale. This will create new opportunities for enterprise customers to better and more effectively monitor and optimize their business processes.”

“incubed IT’s next-generation software and autonomous fleet management server are foundational components for the future of terrestrial robotics,” said Elise Neel, Vice President of Verizon New Business Incubation. “When we combine incubed IT’s capabilities with the reliability, responsiveness and vast capabilities of Verizon’s 5G platform, we will enable faster, less expensive and more effective adoption of robotic automation for enterprises everywhere.”


Palo Alto Networks to acquire Bridgecrew

Palo Alto Networks agreed to acquire Bridgecrew, a developer-first cloud security company, for approximately $156 million in cash. 

Bridgecrew, which is based in San Francisco, is a pioneer in shift left, focusing on infrastructure as code (IaC), where infrastructure configuration is codified during development. The company’s developer-first IaC security platform offers developers and DevOps teams a systematic way to enforce infrastructure security standards throughout the development lifecycle. The proposed acquisition will enable Prisma Cloud to provide developers with security assessment and enforcement capabilities throughout the DevOps process.

Bridgecrew’s open-source IaC scanner, Checkov, has gained significant early traction with developers, surpassing 1 million downloads in 2020 — its first full year of availability. 

"Shift left security is a must-have in any cloud security platform. Developers don’t want to wait until runtime to find out their security is not working, and the CISO charged with protecting the entire organization certainly values higher security from fixing issues earlier in the development lifecycle. We are thrilled to welcome Bridgecrew, and their widely adopted and trusted developer security platform, to Palo Alto Networks. When combined, Prisma Cloud customers will benefit from having security embedded in the very foundation of their cloud infrastructure," says Nikesh Arora, chairman and CEO of Palo Alto Networks.


Malaysia's Allo Technology deploys Infinera

Allo Technology Sdn Bhd (Allo), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), has deployed Infinera’s GX Series Compact Modular Platform over its nationwide open optical network infrastructure.

Allo’s modernized open optical network enables the advancement of technology and connectivity services in Malaysia by providing the infrastructure needed, including tower fiberization, data center connectivity, and cross-border connectivity to neighboring countries through Allo Carrier Network System (ACNS). Allo supports Malaysia’s digital transformation with its expanded offerings, which include connectivity services for residential and business enterprises.


Infinera said its GX series supports Allo in addressing the coverage and speed gap issues for fixed broadband services in the country. The network deployment delivers terabit capacity on demand in an easy-to-operate, highly compact form factor. The GX Series features coherent 600G technology with a seamlessly upgrade path to 800G capability in the future.

“Allo Carrier Network is the superhighway backbone of Malaysia and we rely on innovative, proven technology and solutions to ensure connectivity across the country,” said Muhammad Mohd Yunos, Chief Technology Officer at Allo. “Infinera’s GX Series is the ideal platform to meet our ICT infrastructure needs in an open optical networking environment.”

“As the industry moves to open networking, operators like Allo are able to seamlessly increase network capacity with deployment of best-of-breed coherent solutions over existing optical infrastructure,” said Nick Walden, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales at Infinera. “The GX Series is purpose-built for open optical networks, supporting deployment over virtually any optical line system and boasting a flexible and highly compact form factor for space and power savings.”

https://www.infinera.com/press-release/allo-technologys-nationwide-open-optical-network-leverages-infineras-gx-series

Styra cites rapid growth of its cloud-native Open Policy Agent authorization

Privately-held Styra, the founders of Open Policy Agent (OPA) and provides of cloud-native authorization, reported over 300 percent growth year-over-year in 2020. The company's employee headcount grew by 90% during the year.

The company said the rapid adoption of its Declarative Authorization Service (DAS), the company’s turnkey enterprise security solution built on the recently graduated open-source project OPA, can be attributed to accelerating global demand for an authorization solution that meets the flexibility and scale requirements of Kubernetes and cloud-native environments—due in no small part to a newly remote workforce and need for highly available cloud-based applications and services. 

In 2020, OPA was awarded graduated status from the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) after meeting the foundation’s criteria for community growth and project adoption.  OPA downloads increased from 6 million to over 35 million in 2020.

“OPA adoption across all use cases over the last year has been phenomenal,” said Torin Sandall, vice president of open source at Styra. “We’ve seen the community grow in every measurable way. Slack and openpolicyagent.org membership and participation has more than doubled, the number of public repositories on GitHub containing .rego files has also doubled and the number of Docker image downloads has gone from 6M to over 39M. We attribute much of this growth to the efforts of the community and to the need for a robust authorization policy-as-code solution in the cloud native ecosystem.”


Open Policy Agent: Building a standard for cloud-native authorization

Here is a quick introduction to Open Policy Agent (OPA), which is now a Cloud Native Computing Foundation incubating project, and which provides an open source, general-purpose policy engine for cloud infrastructure.

The cloud-native stack is becoming so complex and distributed that a common, application autorization mechanism is necessary.

 In this video, Bill Mann, CEO of Styra, talks about how OPA is gaining momentum as the de facto approach for establishing authorization policies across cloud native environments. Styra pioneered OPA. Its founding team of Tim Hinrichs and Teemu Koponen previously played key roles in the development of software-defined networking and network virtualization at Nicira.

https://youtu.be/U-a91ylm8uw

MaxLinear collaborates on Facebook Connectivity's Evenstar

MaxLinear announced a collaboration with Facebook Connectivity to integrate silicon technologies and radio processing algorithms into Evenstar radio units (RUs). MaxLinear will integrate its MaxLin radio processing algorithms including Digital Pre-Distortion (DPD) and Crest Factor Reduction (CFR) technologies with Evenstar RUs to enhance performance and reduce cost.

The Evenstar program is a collaborative effort focused on building a general-purpose RAN reference architecture for 4G and 5G networks in the OpenRAN ecosystem. '

MaxLinear’s patented wideband linearization techniques are based on sophisticated machine learning algorithms that significantly improve the efficiency of power amplifiers when compared to other available industry solutions. This increased efficiency dramatically reduces system power consumption by as much as 300W for a 64-transceiver massive MIMO implementation, enabling easier deployment of lower-cost radios.

“We are excited to contribute to the OpenRAN ecosystem and make Evenstar radio units more efficient,” said Brendan Walsh, Vice President of MaxLinear’s Wireless Infrastructure Group. “Our core technologies, including silicon transceivers, linearization and AI algorithms, will help enable the acceleration and adoption of OpenRAN solutions like Evenstar.”

“We are thrilled to welcome MaxLinear to the Evenstar program,” said Jaydeep Ranade, director of wireless engineering for Facebook Connectivity. “Our close collaboration with MaxLinear will accelerate innovation and performance improvements in the OpenRAN ecosystem. OpenRAN support is gaining momentum and we look forward to working together to make higher performance, open networks more accessible around the globe."

www.maxlinear.com

Monday, February 15, 2021

HyperOne plans a new 20,000 km fiber backbone for Australia

HyperOne, a start-up based in Brisbane, unveiled plans for a new 20,000km fiber backbone across Australia. The company is backed by Bevan Slattery, a serial tech entrepreneur known for NextDC, Megaport and Superloop.

HyperOne said its national fibre network represents a $1.5 billion investment in the nation's infrastructure and will be a major upgrade to existing fiber routes, some of which are nearly twenty years old.

“HyperOne is big, bold and way overdue,” said Bevan Slattery. “HyperOne will be the first true private national fibre backbone project connecting major data hubs in every capital city in every state and territory across Australia. HyperOne will also create new major interconnection points for more international undersea cables into Australia from Asia and as far as the Americas and Antarctica."

“With the current geopolitical instability in the region there is unprecedented  opportunity for Australia to become the region’s leading, secure and stable hub for future industries and jobs,” said Mr Slattery.

The HyperOne project office has already begun discussions with the National Broadband Network, the Northern Australian Infrastructure Fund, telecommunication companies, various market participants as well as the Federal Government and state governments.

https://hyper.one/

Telstra sees path to growth now that nbn is complete

Telstra's total income for the half fiscal year ended 31-December-2020 decreased 10.4 percent versus the prior corresponding period to $12.0 billion, while NPAT decreased 2.2 percent to $1.1 billion. Reported EBITDA decreased 14.7 percent to $4.1 billion. After adjusting for lease accounting on a like-for-like basis, EBITDA decreased 11.7 percent to $4.0 billion.

Some highlights during the half

  • Telstra added more than 80,000 postpaid handheld mobile services with healthy performance across all segments and brands. 
  • Telstra also added more than 46,000 unique prepaid handheld users, and more than 163,000 Wholesale mobile services across prepaid, postpaid and IoT services.
  • Mobile revenue declined due to lower hardware sales and the impact on international roaming from COVID-19. 
  • Telstra has expanded its 5G rollout to selected areas in more than 100 cities and towns across Australia, and the network now provides 5G coverage to more than 50% of the population. Telstra intends to increase that to 75% by June. 
  • Currently, there are around one million 5G devices connected to the Telstra network
  • Reported postpaid handheld ARPU declined 8.6 percent for the half, or approximately 3 percent if the impacts to international roaming are removed. This decline was all due to noneconomic accounting impacts, out-of-bundle declines and Belong dilution, with impacts from recent pricing changes now positive. 
  • In Fixed – Consumer & Small Business, bundles and data revenue declined 0.6 per cent with ARPU stabilizing as customers were moved to in-market plans. Telstra said it would focus on
  • increasing ARPU through differentiation, add-ons and improved plan mix including a higher proportion of customers on 100Mbps+ plans.
  • In Fixed – Enterprise, revenue declined 6.4 percent as Telstra transitioned from providing virtual private corporate networks to integrating over-the-Internet technologies such as SDWAN
  • with Telstra Fibre and NBN access. NAS income declined 6 percent.
  • Fixed - Wholesale results also showed continued declines in legacy products including from nbn headwinds, and commercial works declines. The ongoing portfolio including passive infrastructure grew.

Telstra CEO Andrew Penn states: “After a decade of disruption following the creation of the nbn, and with its rollout now declared complete, we can clearly see the path to underlying growth ahead of us,” Mr Penn said. “We responded strongly to the financial headwinds created by the nbn through our T22 strategy.

This strategy is transforming Telstra while balancing the needs of our customers, our employees and our shareholders. We are now less than 18 months from completing T22. We have achieved an extraordinary amount and Telstra today is a leaner, more responsive, and more agile company than it has ever been.

“Our investment in innovation and technology, digitisation and networks, improving our customer experience and being disciplined in our capital management, mean that at the start of thisdecade, as Australia digitises its economy, Telstra is in a strong position to grow.

“To ensure our future success, we must recognise this moment for what it is – the time to be bold and seize the opportunities we have been patiently building towards. There is a lot of work ahead of us, but I remain confident we can achieve our financial ambitions including for underlying EBITDA of between $7.5 and $8.5 billion and ROIC of around 8 percent by FY23,” he said.

Telstra also noted progress on the establishment and proposed monetisation of InfraCo Towers, as well as the broader legal restructuring of the organisation announced in November 2020.

Mr Penn said Telstra had significantly progressed the establishment of InfraCo Towers as a separate operating business, with significant work due to be completed by the end of FY21 as previously indicated. 

https://www.telstra.com.au/aboutus/investors/financial-information/financial-results

Australia declares NBN "built and fully operational"

Paul Fletcher, Australia's Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, has declared the National Broadband Network as " "built and fully operational." Thedeclaration is one of the steps that must occur under the NBN Companies Act before NBN Co can be privatised, but does not automatically trigger any further steps and the government has stated that it does not intend to consider privitisation during this term of Parliament.

Minister Fletcher stated that his formal declaration is based on a number of factors, including:

  • The number of premises able to connect to the NBN is over 11.86 million premises
  • At NBN Co’s FY20 results announcement in August 2020 there were around 100,000 complex premises yet to be made ‘ready to connect’ (RTC), that number has now reduced substantially and is expected to be around 35,000 as at 31 December 2020
  • New premises are being built all the time. This means that there will always be a number of premises around Australia that are not yet ‘ready to connect’. The fact that there is a certain number of premises which are not ready to connect is not of itself evidence that the network cannot be treated as ‘built and fully operational.’

“In my view the evidence before me shows it is appropriate to make the declaration that the NBN should be treated as built and fully operational’, Minister Fletcher said.

"Of course the government recognises that there are some premises which have not yet been made ready to connect – and I expect NBN Co to work as speedily as possible to make the network available to those premises.

"The government also recognises that there is continuing work to enhance the capabilities of the network. Earlier this year we announced a $4.5 billion upgrade to the NBN; the work to deliver that upgrade will be carried out over several years.

"Also, in some areas the NBN can only operate at full speed once all legacy copper services are migrated to an NBN or alternative service, which typically takes 18 months from when the NBN commenced services in an area. To minimise interference to the legacy services of other carriers during this period, the NBN operates with reduced signal power which reduces network speeds.

"But this doesn’t mean that NBN Co will stop developing. I fully expect that the Company will operate as a mature entity through continual improvement in the provision of quality services to its broadband retail customers, and ultimately to Australian households and businesses, as well as driving efficiency in its operations.

"As with all large telecommunications networks, NBN Co will need to keep investing in additional network capacity, extend its network to connect new developments and remediate technical issues as they arise."

https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/media-release/nbn-declared-built-and-fully-operational


Australia's NBN Co pushes fiber deeper and advances HFC network upgrade

NBN Co is pushing fibre deeper into communities in selected metropolitan and regional areas of New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia. The fibre deeper work will pass more than 100,000 premises in areas currently serviced by Fibre to the Node (FTTN) technology, effectively converting FTTN locations to FTTP. NBN Co said it will consult with Internet retailers before finalising the design for its extended fibre network.

This marks the start of NBN Co’s $4.5 billion network investment program, which aims to make nbn’s highest wholesale speed tiers available, as demand arises, to around 8 million premises – or up to 75 percent of homes and businesses on the fixed line network by 2023.


NBN Co also reports that it is making good progress on its Hybrid Fibre Cable (HFC) network upgrade program. The company now expects to offer download speeds of 500 Mbps to close to 1 Gbps to approximately 625,000 premises, or around 25 percent of the HFC network footprint by November 2020.

NBN Co also reports that it is making good progress on its Hybrid Fibre Cable (HFC) network upgrade program. Since the company launched its nbn Home Fast, nbn Home Superfast and nbn Home Ultrafast wholesale speed tiers in May 2020, 100 percent of customers connected via HFC have been able to order nbn Home Fast; approximately 70 percent have been able to order nbn Home Superfast, and approximately 7 percent of customers in the HFC footprint have been able to access the fastest residential speed tier1.

https://www.nbnco.com.au/corporate-information/media-centre/media-statements/nbn-extends-fibre-to-additional-100k-premises