Ethernet equipment

ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog

ANDA Networks Inc. is adding real-time monitoring to its EtherReach demarcation boxes, a combination that could help carriers use service verification as a way of generating more revenues.

EtherProbe, as ANDA is calling the new systems, was launched this week to coincide with Light Reading's Ethernet Expo: Europe 2009 in London. ANDA will continue to sell its normal EtherReach boxes as well. (See ANDA Launches EtherProbe .)

EtherProbe checks traffic at Layer 2 and Layer 3, looking for potential signs of degradation so that problems can be corrected before the end user -- the VoIP or video consumer, especially -- notices any problem.

By having one of the devices at the customer premises and another at the central office, carriers can watch traffic on a particular Ethernet virtual circuit or a particular network hop. On the customer premises side, the carrier saves some money by not having to install a probe and a demarcation box separately.

Where EtherProbe gets interesting is in the case of guaranteed service levels. If measureable quantities, such as the delay on a VoIP call, reach certain thresholds chosen by the carrier, EtherProbe can tell the network to take action, by switching to an alternate route, for instance.

That means service providers could offer agreements for guaranteed latency or delay on certain services. Ethernet providers are moving towards that kind of "Carrier Ethernet 2.0" model, which involves services more sophisticated than point-to-point connectivity. ANDA itself loves the term, as you can see in this video from last August:

The key is that EtherProbe does its monitoring continually, rather than occasionally checking the line as some probes do. "There are a lot of drawbacks in the way the methodology is being used today," says Greg Gum, ANDA's vice president of marketing.

ANDA claims that EtherProbe is able to do this monitoring without any noticeable effect on the bandwidth. That's a combination of the device's inherently low overhead and the algorithms ANDA has developed, Gum says.

EtherProbe can be bought as a new box or as a software upgrade to EtherReach.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

Interested in learning more on this topic? Then come to Ethernet Expo: Europe 2009, a conference and exposition showcasing the latest trends in the Carrier Ethernet market in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. To be staged in London, May 13 & 14, admission is free for attendees meeting our prequalification criteria. For more information, or to register, click here.

t.bogataj 12/5/2012 | 4:04:58 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog

What is ANDA doing better or more than the well-established Ethernet OAM mechanisms? These already include CFM (Connectivity Fault Management) and Performance Monitoring, they already do what ANDA claims to be able to (or more), and they provide standards-based interoperability.

So why the hack should anyone in his right mind use proprietary probes?


Carriercop 12/5/2012 | 4:04:56 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog Marketing buzzwords have better impact than consented standards...
Carriercop 12/5/2012 | 4:04:56 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog Marketing buzzwords have better impact than consented standards...
Carriercop 12/5/2012 | 4:04:55 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog "Words are a dime a dozen"
t.bogataj 12/5/2012 | 4:04:45 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog

Thanks, Simon.

Completely agree with your observation on bandwidth consumption.

So ANDA uses Y.1731 for PM, including RFC2544 for throughput measurement (used in Y.1731 anyway) -- and clogs the pipes.


SimonParry 12/5/2012 | 4:04:45 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog I spoke the the guys on the stand. The main innovation is to monitor the flow of customer traffic, and use the spare bandwidth to inject the Y.1731 PM frames. That way you don't disrupt the customer traffic, but still get Performance information.

It's a neat idea, but falls down if you have to cross any shared core, as you have just massively impacted the bandwidth requirements in the core.
sanchin 12/5/2012 | 4:04:41 PM
re: ANDA Plays Ethernet Watchdog My understanding (saw it at the London show)... EtherProbe supports all the standard OAM tests, however, as enhancements to the OAM standards it enables the carrier to run in-line traffic tests in real time, via standard OAM PDUs within the CCM frames. It is compliant to the carrier Ethernet OAM standards (1731, 2544, 802.1ag etc. but does not cause bandwidth overload since it is embedded within an intelligent demarcation unit, from which the carrier polices CIR/EIR. Thus the throughput tests can stress only up to their purchased policed rate.
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