Optical/IP Networks

IP Traffic Smarts Hit Berlin

BERLIN –- Broadband World Forum Europe –- IP traffic management looks set to be a hot topic this week as vendors and carriers discuss the state of next-generation network technologies here in Berlin.

But while capabilities such as deep packet inspection (DPI) and policy control were both cited as important by carriers such as Telecom Italia (TIM) and Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF) in a panel session here this morning, Telefónica's CTO told the vendor community that there was something else higher on his wish list.

Vicente San Miguel told his fellow panelists from Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR) that scaleability is the biggest challenge, and gave a clear example of why that is: The CTO says 10 houses with IPTV services today create more IP traffic than all of Spain's domestic Internet access users did in 1997.

Both San Miguel and his counterpart at Telecom Italia, Stefano Pileri, though, noted the importance of technologies that will give them greater control of their network resources and provide insights into the traffic running over their networks.

And there's no shortage of specialist vendors addressing those needs here in Berlin.

Cloudshield passes AlcaLu inspection
Deep packet inspection (DPI) vendor CloudShield Technologies Inc. is touting its reseller relationship with Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) that, according to CEO Matt Jones, has already secured some carrier business in Latin and North America. (See AlcaLu, Cloudshield Partner.)

Guido Nienkemper, who is Security Practice Lead (Europe and North) at AlcaLu, says his company benchmarked a number of vendors, including Ellacoya Networks Inc. and Sandvine Inc. , and found Cloudshield "is the most flexible, has combined security and service control capabilities, and has the performance speeds that are needed" for Tier 1 carrier deployments.

Jones says his company, which targets the major carrier and government space, is due to announce a commercial deployment of its 10-GigE platform in the coming months. (See Cloudshield Supports 10GigE and Tektronix Helps Fund CloudShield .)

Operax trawls for new partners
Policy control specialist Operax AB has developed new products and set up an interoperability program as it looks to extend its reach into the market and sign up new vendor partners.

The Swedish firm, which is at various trial stages with several European Tier 1 carriers, has developed a new standards-based software component, the i500, that can be integrated by other vendors that want to add A-RACF (access resource and admission control function) capabilities to their platforms. Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) is already a partner, but Operax is looking to attract new business partners. (See Operax Hunts New Partners, Operax Completes TI Trial, Operax Scores $15 Million, Sources: Operax Scores With Tier 1 Carriers, and Policy Control Heats Up.)

It has also unveiled a single service, pre-IMS product -- the Resource Controller 3300 -- that can be deployed in networks for resource management related to a specific service, such as IPTV. (See Operax Repositions.)

Operax has also unveiled a partner ecosystem in an effort to tackle interoperability and smooth out pre-deployment multi-vendor integration issues, and has renamed its product line, dropping the term Bandwidth Manager for Resource Controller. "The term bandwidth management was becoming confused with deep packet inspection," says Operax chief marketing officer Chris Merrick.

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

COMMENTS Add Comment
fgoldstein 12/5/2012 | 3:01:08 PM
re: IP Traffic Smarts Hit Berlin They don't get it. DPI is to broadband as copy protection is to music, a fool's errand that disgusts the customer in the interest of trying to extract that extra pound of flesh.

End users have little interest in DPI walled gardens. But they're expensive to build, and like the rest of the IMS disaster, they're a vendor's way to get service providers to do something expensively that can be better done on the cheap. Basically DPI's job is to replace the Internet with hi-def WAP. In Europe, most countries (and EU policy) favor true competition, so subscribers will have an option to move away from DPI walled gardens, away from Fat Wasteband, Broadband Internet's Evil Twin and towards real high-speed Internet. Somebody will offer it.

In the US, the Bells have gotten the FCC to pretty much shut down the independent ISP business, which is the only way they can foist this turkey onto users, and even then it's doubtful. The whole "neutrality" debate is caused by DPI; talk about "tiering" is a distraction that Big Ed's spinmeisters put out to the popular press (main subjects of expertise: Britney, sports and missing white women).

DPI specialists like Tazz are dying. Once the current FCC is swept out in 2009, the Bells are likely to lose some of their power, and DPI will go the way of Videotex.
0x007 12/5/2012 | 3:01:00 PM
re: IP Traffic Smarts Hit Berlin DPI specialists like Tazz are dying. Once the current FCC is swept out in 2009, the Bells are likely to lose some of their power, and DPI will go the way of Videotex.

Dying? try dead, cold and moldy. DPI is a tough case to make in a stand alone box. While there's some utility to having it as a feature on router/switch line cards its a tough sell to put more boxes in the network to do it and an even tougher sell to add a few hundred servers to the data center to push policy into them. Just ask Tazz. (You will need a Ouija board to make the call though).
digits 12/5/2012 | 3:00:57 PM
re: IP Traffic Smarts Hit Berlin As far as I know, Tazz isn't and wasn't a deep packet inspection specialist -- policy management is its focus area.
0x007 12/5/2012 | 3:00:56 PM
re: IP Traffic Smarts Hit Berlin WAS its focus area
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