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Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS

Hopes of reducing capex and opex and building new revenue opportunities has carriers ready to spend on IP/MPLS gear within the next year, according to a report from Infonetics Research Inc.

Based on a survey of 21 service providers in North America, Europe, and the Asia/Pacific region, the firm says 62 percent of respondents already have projects designed to converge legacy and IP data traffic via IP or IP/MPLS; 86 percent report they plan to have such a project underway in 2004.

Infonetics forecasts that, while all kinds of data traffic continue to grow, IP/MPLS will show the largest increase -- 84 percent in 2004, compared with 22 percent growth in ATM traffic and 8 percent growth in Frame Relay.

Infonetics data shows that the rate of traffic growth will actually drop for IP/MPLS in 2004, compared with what it was this year. But report lead author and Infonetics directing analyst Kevin Mitchell attributes this to a fall-off from heavy initial ramp-ups of IP traffic and some dropoff in spending by competitive local exchange carriers (CLECs). Incumbent carriers, however, are just getting started with IP buildouts, he says.

When asked what areas they'd be likely to spend on next year, 62 percent to 81 percent of Infonetics' respondents said they'd increase investments in IP/MPLS, broadband, and metro Ethernet. In contrast, fewer than one-fifth, Mitchell says, said they would increase investments in ATM and/or Frame Relay.

Respondents seem confident they'll be able to afford the increases; on average, they estimated a 6 percent increase in revenue growth next year.

Despite the big growth projected for IP traffic, Mitchell acknowledges the installed base of ATM and Frame Relay still largely outweighs that of IP or IP/MPLS. By how much, he can't say. But sales of IP routers already outpace those of multiservice ATM gear, he observes. The trend toward packet-based networks is clearly in motion.

— Mary Jander, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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edgecore 12/4/2012 | 11:14:48 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS "Carriers Dough Flows to IP/MPLS", how is that different than "Carriers Dough Flows to IP only"

When people discuss IP and IP/MPLS, what is the actual difference in the network elements or line cards involved?

EC



plumpy 12/4/2012 | 11:14:48 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS EC

It is pretty simple. There are two router
vendors that actually count. The rest of
posers.

Once you dig into MPLS on those two, you find the differences.

I will use some everyday analogies to explain how
respectively easy it is to turn on the software on the IP box to run MPLS (your main question).

Birth Control
Vendor 1: Morning after pill
Vendor 2: Vasectomy

Taxes
Vendor 1: 1040EZ
Vendor 2: 1040 with schedules A,B,C,D,E,F,G,H,I,509, 4411, and then audit

Get into college
Vendor 1: Has to choose between full boat at Princeton or Yale
Vendor 2: Has to work at Chi-Chis, get HepA, and go to local tractor trailer training school.

This is fun.
p

Vendor 1
signmeup 12/4/2012 | 11:14:47 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS plumpy,

You wouldn't be biased would you? Well, I can understand not wanting to get fired by vendor 1, however your post has zero truth to it.

First of all, there are more than just 2 router vendors that count. Obviously there are 2 big ones, but to call the rest posers is ignorant. Who does AT&T run in their backbone? It's not one of the two you just mentioned... I guess in your eyes AT&T isn't a "real" network.

Second, I fail to see how your "analogies" provide anything but a biased opinion. You provide nothing of substance that would give us a clue you know anything. By not providing any substance, you demonstrate that, in fact, you do NOT know anything.

Now if you were to say "Vendor 1 provides a simplistic approach to enabling MPLS by abstracting lower-level functions from the CLI and allowing minimal configuration knobs that the user can adjust. While Vendor 2 provides a more complex approach to enabling MPLS by requiring more initial knowledge, but allowing for greater configuration flexibility from the CLI." that would give us a clue as to your knowledge level.

Both approaches have pros and cons, much like everthing in life.

I await your enlightenment.

signmeup
JackRJ45 12/4/2012 | 11:14:46 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS "When people discuss IP and IP/MPLS, what is the actual difference in the network elements or line cards involved?"

Some vendors produce specific line cards with MPLS built into Hardware.

Some of the these hardware cards are centralized with no interface ports on them and the MPLS is in H/W is available to all of the I/O modules.

Most vendors use MPLS H/W on interface I/O modules the limitation is that MPLS is limited to that module.

Either approach works. The best (although may be expensive and hard to do with changing drafts) is to have all MPLS features built into all IP hardware. This is difficult with ASICs and possible with micro code programmable ASICs or FPGA.

Extreme and Procket are two examples of the Micro code ASICS.

cc_junk 12/4/2012 | 11:14:45 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS When it comes to multi-service MPLS edge routers I have seen a lot of promises, but not much delivery. By multiservice I mean delivering normal IP (Internet routing) service, 2547 Layer 3 VPN service, plus Layer 2 Virtual Psuedo Wire Service (aka Martini) for FR, ATM and Ethernet, layer 2 VPLS. And allow for various service interface types NxDS0, DS1, NxDS1, DS3, OCx and Ethernet (GigE and FE) for FR (at OCx speeds also), PPP, ATM and Vlan.

The router-legacy boxes just don't seem to have a good layer 2 story. Others don't seem to have good layer 3. The closest I have seen to a real, delivered (not just planned) multiservice box that does have a large subset of the above at scale would have to be someone like Laurel Networks (being used this way at Level 3).

I do see a lot of "stories" around every vendors platform that they will do all these things and more. Well, I will believe it when I see it in a production network.
krisman 12/4/2012 | 11:14:45 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS What type of boxes constitute metro Ethernet quoted in the article? Are they packet based equipment such as from Extreme and Foundry or TDM based equipment (Ethernet on SONET) such as from Nortel (Optera 3500) or Lucent (DMX).

Thanks
Kevin Mitchell 12/4/2012 | 11:14:38 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS Mr EC said:
"When people discuss IP and IP/MPLS, what is the actual difference in the network elements or line cards involved?"

MP of MPLS stands for Multiprotocol, so
MPLS does not automaticaly mean IP. While MPLS orginated on IP routers, almost every ATM/FR switch vendor now supports MPLS in some fashion.
change_is_good 12/4/2012 | 11:14:37 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS who cares what the plumbing is as long as it is cheap and reliable?

get a grip man!
lkuav8r 12/4/2012 | 11:14:36 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS Name one carrier deploying MPLS
AAL5 12/4/2012 | 11:14:34 PM
re: Survey: Carrier Dough Flows to IP/MPLS lkuav8r said "Name one carrier deploying MPLS",

AT&T, Bellsouth, SBC, Sprint.

Is that enough for you?

AAL5
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