& cplSiteName &

Menara Pitches OTN Advances

Craig Matsumoto
News Analysis
Craig Matsumoto
2/25/2008
50%
50%

An optical transceiver startup is preaching the benefits of the Optical Transport Network (OTN) protocol, saying it's got a way to extend the technology to more parts of the network and so reduce the number of devices carriers need to deploy.

Menara Networks began shipping commercial products in 2007, but it's using this week's OFC/NFOEC as a coming-out party. Two of its transceivers cover the XFP and 300-pin formats, and a third works for the Xenpak and X2 standards.

What makes the parts special, Menara says, is that a lot of the OTN management software has been integrated into the transceivers without violating the respective multisource agreements (MSAs). "Now the transceivers are not just Layer 1 optical, passing bits," says CEO Siraj Nour El-Ahmadi.

On paper, that means systems vendors wouldn't need to worry about including OTN's management features on linecards. "Some of our customers are people who know nothing about systems. They know IP routers, SAN switches -- it would be difficult for them to integrate that software into those switches," El-Ahmadi says.

Building these modules was harder to do than it sounds, he claims. Off-the-shelf OTN chips from companies such as Applied Micro Circuits Corp. (Nasdaq: AMCC) and Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) don't yet fit inside an XFP module, so Menara had to develop its own chips.

"It was quite a bit more difficult than we thought -- the power constraints, the software," El-Ahmadi says. "It kicked our butts for four years."

Menara is hardly the only believer in OTN; companies like Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN) have actively plugged it as the future of optical networking. Part of OTN's promise is to provide one transport envelope to carry both Sonet and Ethernet traffic, creating a chance for those networks to converge. (See Optical Expo: A Look Ahead.)

But Menara thinks it can add to the promise of OTN by removing some equipment from the network. For starters, DWDM OTN modules can eliminate the need for DWDM transponders in a network; wavelengths could come right off a router or switch.

Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) has been among the companies championing that idea, but Menara claims it's the first company to offer it in a pluggable format.

Menara also thinks its products could make dedicated Ethernet demarcation equipment redundant, because its transceivers would provide a monitoring point carriers could use for fault isolation. Moreover, El-Ahmadi says the transceivers are able to calculate bit error rates on a link, something other Ethernet gear can't do.

This part of the plan would involve producing products at lower speeds, suitable for customer premises equipment. "Our plan is to extend this all the way to 100 Mbit/s, not just 10 Gbit/s," El-Ahmadi says.

Menara hasn't announced any customers yet, but El-Ahmadi says the company has been "working with" Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR).

The company was founded by old hands in optical networking: El-Ahmadi and chief technology officer Salam El-Ahmadi both came from Qtera, which was acquired by Nortel Networks Ltd. during the bubble. (See Nortel Completes Acquisition of Qtera .)

Menara has raised $19 million in two rounds of funding from Applied Materials Ventures , Concept Ventures , Sigma Partners , and Spark Capital Partners LLC .

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Pete Baldwin
50%
50%
Pete Baldwin,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:45:54 PM
re: Menara Pitches OTN Advances
We've put up a Startup Spotlight page for these guys:

http://www.lightreading.com/do...

Full disclosure: Most of the information there is already in this story. Hopefully we'll be updating the Startup Spotlight page as Menara progresses, though.

I'm also intending to do one of those on Nistica, but it might be a couple weeks.

Any other companies we ought to spotlight? The newer, the better. Let us know: editors@lightreading.com.
NoCopper
50%
50%
NoCopper,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:29:46 PM
re: Menara Pitches OTN Advances
100M OTN?, for the OTN standard purists, this is quite a strange announcement. The lowest OTN line rate is OTU-1 which is around 2.7G. I am not aware of any plans in ITU-T to standardize a lower rate in the future.

Generally I think this approach is a good idea for GbE and 10G rates, but does anybody know whether these pluggables are OTN standard compliant?
nodak
50%
50%
nodak,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:29:37 PM
re: Menara Pitches OTN Advances
From the way the quote reads, I think he meant to say/typo 100G not 100M.
Light Reading’s Upskill U is a FREE, interactive, online educational resource that delivers must-have education on themes that relate to the overall business transformation taking place in the communications industry.
NEXT COURSE
Wednesday, August 3, 1:00PM EDT
The Central Office Re-Architected as a Data Center
Guru Parulkar, Executive Director, Open Networking Research Center, Open Networking Lab
UPCOMING COURSE SCHEDULE
Wednesday, August 10, 1:00PM EDT
Telcos & Open Source 101
Phil Robb, Senior Technical Director, OpenDaylight
Friday, August 12, 1:00PM EDT
The Role of Open Source in NFV
Jim Fagan, Director, Cloud Practice, Telstra
Wednesday, August 17, 1:00PM EDT
Using Open Source for Data Centers and Cloud Services
Roz Roseboro, Senior Analyst, Heavy Reading
in association with:
From The Founder
Light Reading today starts a new voyage as part of a larger Enterprise.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
Reinventing Operations for a Virtual, Software-Defined World

7|28|16   |   5:23   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Jim Hodges speaks with Accenture's Larry Socher and Matt Anderson about what service providers must do to transform their business to get the benefits of SDN and NFV including: leveraging DevOps, introducing real-time OSS and implementing analytics.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Fujitsu Sales Leader Shares Lessons Learned

7|27|16   |   5:12   |   (0) comments


As Fujitsu's only female sales leader, Annie Bogue knows the importance of asking for what you want, being flexible (she's been relocated five times), keeping a meticulous calendar, 'leaning in,' working harder than everyone else around you, being aware and more.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
VeEX Test & Measurement Solutions

7|25|16   |   08:57   |   (0) comments


Cyrille Morelle, president and CEO of VeEX Inc., talks test and measurement with Light Reading's Steve Saunders at BCE 2016. This includes innovative products such as VeSion Cloud-Based platform for network monitoring; MTTplus Modular Test platform for Access, Business, Carrier Ethernet, Transport and Core services; and OPX-BOX+ for Fiber Optics.
LRTV Custom TV
VeEX: Live From BCE 2016

7|25|16   |   03:20   |   (0) comments


VeEX's Senior Director of Business Development, Perry Romano, explains how VeEX provides tools to help install, maintain, monitor and manage network infrastructure efficiently and effectively. The portfolio of products on display include the RXT-6000, MTTplus and TX300s.
LRTV Custom TV
Real-Time Telemetry & Analytics for Intelligent SDN Orchestration

7|25|16   |   03:09   |   (0) comments


Packet Design CEO Scott Sherwood discusses how real-time network telemetry and analytics are enabling a new breed of SDN orchestration applications.
From the Founder
The Russo Report: Driving Disruption

7|25|16   |   07:44   |   (0) comments


In the first episode of a four-part series, Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders and Calix President and CEO Carl Russo drive around town discussing the disruptive mega-changes in the communications industry and where hope lies for service providers to meet the escalating demands of the cloud.
LRTV Custom TV
NetScout: Maximizing Enterprise Cloud for Digital Transformation

7|20|16   |   04:53   |   (0) comments


Light Reading Editor Mitch Wagner talks to NetScout CMO Jim McNiel about maximizing the benefits of enterprise cloud and digital transformation while minimizing potential pitfalls with a proper monitoring and instrumentation strategy.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Ciena's VP Offers a Career Crash Course

7|20|16   |   4:14   |   (2) comments


How did Ciena's Vice President of Sales, Angela Finn, carve out her career path? Simple, she tells WiC. She stayed true to her company, customers and principles. She shares her advice for women on how to be authentic and credible, as well as for companies that want to make a real change to their culture and practices.
LRTV Custom TV
NFV in 2016: Part 2 – Climbing the Virtualization Maturity Curve

7|19|16   |   06:56   |   (0) comments


Many of the initial use case implementations are single-vendor and self-contained. The industry is still climbing the virtualization maturity curve, needing further clarity and stability in the NFV infrastructure (NFVi) and greater availability and choice of virtualized network functions (VNFs). Interoperability between NFVis and VNFs from different vendors ...
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Versa Networks' Kumar Mehta on SD-WAN Managed Services

7|19|16   |     |   (0) comments


In Silicon Valley, Steve Saunders sits down with Versa's Kumar Mehta for an interview focused on why service providers are building SD-WAN managed services, and how Versa's telco customers are innovating.
LRTV Custom TV
Juniper Networks & The Evolution of NFV

7|19|16   |   06:01   |   (0) comments


Senior Juniper Networks executives talk to Light Reading Founder & CEO Steve Saunders about NFV developments and the recent independent evaluation by test lab EANTC of Juniper's Cloud CPE solution.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink Goes Beyond Managed WiFi

7|19|16   |     |   (0) comments


CenturyLink's managed WiFi allows enterprises, such as retailers and resorts, to track guest WiFi usage in order to help them better communicate with customers.
Upcoming Live Events
September 13-14, 2016, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 6-8, 2016,
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Five of the Top 10 most targeted countries in Check Point Software Technologies' global Malware & Threat Index for Q1 2016 are in Africa.
Hot Topics
Verizon Sports Big Plans for Yahoo
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 7/26/2016
Light Reading Beyond
Steve Saunders, CEO and founder, Light Reading, 7/28/2016
Yahoo Signing Off in $4.83B Sale to Verizon
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 7/25/2016
Ericsson Board Has Been Asleep at the Wheel – Consultant
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 7/25/2016
Facebook Gets Its Drone On
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 7/22/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
There's no question that, come 2020, 5G technology will turn the world's conception of what mobile networking is on its head. Within the world of 5G development, Dr. ...
I've enjoyed interviewing many interesting people since I rejoined Light Reading, but William A. "Bill" Owens certainly takes the biscuit, as we say where I come from.
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Our world has evolved through innovation from the Industrial Revolution of the 1740s to the information age, and it is now entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution, driven by technology. Technology is driving a paradigm shift in the way digital solutions deliver a connected world, changing the way we live, communicate and provide solutions. It can have a powerful impact on how we tackle some of the world’s most pressing problems. In this radio show, Caroline Dowling, President of Communications Infrastructure & Enterprise Computing at Flex, will join Women in Comms Director Sarah Thomas to discuss the impact technology has on society and how it can be a game-changer across the globe; improving lives and creating a smarter world. Dowling, a Cork, Ireland, native and graduate of Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program, will also discuss her experience managing an international team focused on innovation in an age of high-speed change.