Light Reading

DT's All-Cisco, No-Optical Network

Craig Matsumoto
News Analysis
Craig Matsumoto
12/17/2012
50%
50%

The new Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT) architecture, TeraStream, skips using optical equipment and might be using a new Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) 100Gbit/s optical interface, according to a description from a source familiar with the specifics.

DT is also taking advantage of the IPv6 header for storing policy-related information, thus letting services assign policy based on a quick glance at the header.

It's no surprise that TeraStream would try some newfangled ideas. That was the point, after all. TeraStream is a modernized architecture that runs on IPv6 only -- no ATM or Frame Relay -- and exploits cloud-networking concepts. All services in the network are handled by virtual appliances in the data center, an arrangement that smacks of software-defined networking (SDN).

The first TeraStream rendition is running in Croatia, where Hrvatski Telekom, a DT subsidiary, is using it to deliver residential services. The pilot went live on Dec. 10. (See DT's Croatia Unit Taps Cisco.)

Cisco, which is supplying the TeraStream gear, made that announcement and detailed quite a bit about TeraStream's inner workings. For instance, Cisco is supplying the data centers for TeraStream, basing them on the Unified Computing System (UCS) architecture.

But our source, who didn't want to be named, seems to think the finer points of TeraStream have gone unappreciated. So let's take a look at what's under the hood.

No Optics Allowed (Almost)
TeraStream goes whole hog with IP over DWDM (IPoDWDM), meaning the optical transceivers are directly on the routers, eliminating the need for transponder shelves. There are no optical subsystems in the network at all, save for passive splitters and EDFAs, according to the source.

Those IPoDWDM interfaces apparently run at 100 Gbit/s, which brings up the possibility that they're based on Cisco's new, homemade transceiver format called the CPAK. It's a smaller alternative to the CFP, and it's come out earlier than the CFP2, the "official" smaller-than-CFP format.

Cisco hasn't officially acknowledged the CPAK, but as of November, sources inside the company were telling Light Reading its launch was imminent.

If CPAK isn't already in TeraStream, it's probably going to get there soon; the source says DT is hoping the use of silicon photonics will bring 100Gbit/s and 400Gbit/s pluggable transceivers below the $10,000 level. CPAK is assumed to be using silicon photonics that Cisco acquired with Lightwire. (See Lightwire Points Cisco Toward 100G and Silicon Photonics Signals Red Alert for 100G .)

The TeraStream architecture was drawn up by Peter Löthberg and Guenter Honisch, the source speculates. Honisch is part of DT's office of the CTO, while Löthberg is an optical networking legend known for, among other things, bringing a 40Gbit/s connection to his mom's house.

Here's the full text of what Light Reading was sent last week. We've broken it into paragraphs for readability.

Terastream, believed to be the brainchild of Lothberg & Honisch, completely integrates the whole carrier network and datacenter.

The network is designed with only two layers of routers. One set of routers are used for customer aggregation and all policy, and the other to combine the functions for core, peering and datacenter switching/interconnect. The internal network is IPv6 only.

Traffic type is encoded into the IPv6 addresses, allowing policy processing for different services through a single ip lookup (eg. labels moved to the addresses).

All the transport links in the network use 100G coherent optics tightly integrated with the routers. One can guess Lothberg is behind this and some information indicates that he is working on the assumption that silicon-optics will be able to make pluggable 100G/400G transceiver for less than $10K. The design has removed all optical subsystems and reduced the whole transport to passive splitters and EDFA amplifiers in a completely colorless drop-and waste model.

All protection is IPv6 based. QOS model is turned around with bidirectional policing at the edges.

Two modes of operation are provided, one IPv6 native and the other a Metro-Ethernet MEF compliant customer facing service utilizing IPv6 transport encapsulation and full Y.1731 support.

By using IPv6 the design can interconnect a network endpoint directly to an application running on a VM in the cloud datacenter, IPv6 also allows direct addressing of a logical port, rather than having content context in the encapsulation header.

All traditional network services are moved from the network to the network-centric datacenters. In a presentation done by Honisch he said the services were provided by "virtual appliances" and indicated that "buying appliances and service blades as a software license."


— Craig Matsumoto, Managing Editor, Light Reading

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
From The Founder
Against the odds, Huawei is growing its telecoms networking equipment business in the US -- that should be ringing some alarm bells for domestic vendors.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
Between the CEOs
Metaswitch's New CEO Martin Lund Discusses His Role

9|2|15   |   11:27   |   (3) comments


Technology industry veteran Martin Lund joins Metaswitch Networks this week as the company's new CEO. In this interview, Lund discusses his new role and the industry's progress with Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders. Lund believes that the industry disruption caused by SDN and NFV is creating opportunities for companies like Metaswitch – network software providers ...
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Nominum on Leveraging the Power of DNS to Deliver Superior Subscriber Experiences

9|2|15   |   07:13   |   (0) comments


Nominum CEO Gary Messiana talks about the challenges service providers face in competing for a much more sophisticated customer, a customer that has heightened expectations for more personalized and compelling digital experiences. Providers are focusing their efforts on delivering higher value subscriber services, retaining their existing customers and increasing ...
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Jeff Miller, ActiveVideo

8|28|15   |   19:05   |   (0) comments


Jeff Miller, President and CEO of ActiveVideo, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the impact of virtualization on the TV and video distribution market.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Vodafone: Mobile Money Is About Customer Trust

8|27|15   |   06.36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading spoke with Vodafone's Ian Ravenscroft about the unique responsibilities and opportunities facing operators handling customers' financial transactions over the network.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Palo Alto Networks on Expanding in the Carrier/Service Provider Market

8|26|15   |   07:54   |   (0) comments


Alfred Lee from Palo Alto Networks tells Steve Saunders about their new chassis-based system, the PA-7080, and how it can benefit service providers compared to legacy firewalls.
LRTV Custom TV
Global Services Forum Preview

8|25|15   |   02:36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders talks about Huawei's upcoming Global Services Forum with the help of Heavy Reading's Patrick Donegan and Teresa Mastrangelo.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Infoblox on DNS Threat Index

8|19|15   |   04:39   |   (0) comments


Dilip Pillaipakam from Infoblox talks to Steve Saunders about his company's core network services.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Ihab Tarazi, Equinix

8|14|15   |   20:18   |   (1) comment


Equinix CTO Ihab Tarazi talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the dramatic changes in the data center, cloud and interconnect markets and discusses the impact of SDN and NFV in the coming years.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
The Netformx Ecosystem

8|14|15   |   09:39   |   (1) comment


Ittai Bareket, CEO of Netformx, talks with Steve Saunders about the Netformx Ecosystem, which employs cutting-edge prescriptive analytics to help solution providers maximize profits.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Versa Networks on Leveraging VNFs

8|12|15   |   07:37   |   (0) comments


Kumar Mehta, founder and CEO of stealth mode startup Versa Networks, talks with Steve Saunders about how providers can best leverage virtualized network functions (VNFs).
LRTV Custom TV
Transforming the Network Through OPNFV

8|5|15   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


Sandra Rivera, VP Data Center Group; GM Network Platforms Group, Intel Corporation, on OPNFV Arno and how the industry is coming together to accelerate the deployment of NFV and transform the network.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei ONS Product Demo

8|3|15   |   6:01   |   (0) comments


Huawei shows at Open Networking Summit 2015 in Santa Clara how its SDN and NFV solutions embrace openness.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
November 17, 2015, Santa Clara, California
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Cisco's cloud and virtualization portfolio can increase business agility and innovation by building a more flexible network architecture.
Hot Topics
T-Mobile CEO Plays Data Traffic Cop
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 8/31/2015
CEO Chat With Bill Gates
Steve Saunders, CEO and founder, Light Reading, 8/31/2015
Time to Monetize Cable WiFi
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 8/31/2015
Carolina Town Becomes First US 10-Gig City
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 9/3/2015
Eurobites: Anite in OSS Tie-Up With Nokia
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 9/4/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
September 22, 2015
Media Begins With “Me”
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Technology industry veteran Martin Lund joins Metaswitch Networks this week as the company's new CEO. In this interview, Lund discusses his new role and the industry's progress with Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders. Lund believes that the industry disruption caused by SDN and NFV is creating opportunities for companies like Metaswitch – network software providers with the agility to embrace new technologies quickly and the ability to deliver on substantial projects for global network operators.
The scene: Last Saturday, lunchtime, the interior of a shi-shi-foo-foo eatery in Manhattan's SoHo district.
Cats with Phones
It's a New Age... Click Here
When smartphones replace stuffed animals.