In the past two decades, massive SDH devices have been running on networks to provide services such as base station backhaul, broadband access, and private lines and networks. With globalization, informatization, and service cloudification, traditional SDH devices have run into bottlenecks. The challenge of smoothly evolving SDH networks has long been a concern of fixed network operators.
Traditional SDH hard pipes cannot meet new requirements
Critical sectors, such as government and finance, require highly reliable, secure, and guaranteed transmission pipes. Through time-division multiplexing (TDM), traditional SDH technology is able to provide hard pipes with exclusive bandwidth to satisfy the transmission requirements of latency-sensitive services.
However, after many years of industry development, SDH private lines can no longer provide sufficient capacity and are slow to provision, leading to severe user churn. Specifically, the capacity of a single SDH fiber is limited, and the maximum capacity of a single ring network is only 10G. In addition, mainstream SDH vendors in the industry have stopped providing services, and cannot quickly cater to user requirements. Following the cloudification of private network services in the government, healthcare, and finance industries, the per-user bandwidth requirement reaches up to 10G, and services need to be provisioned within days to support flexible capacity expansion. It is clear that traditional SDH devices are not able to offer higher capacity or respond quickly to service requests.
Take a bank customer of an operator as an example. In 2017, this customer had 300+ bank branches. In each of these branches, 10M SDH services needed to be transmitted to the headquarters, primarily to implement teleconferencing. As operations increasingly move online, the bandwidth needed to be increased to 100M to carry new services such as video conferencing and surveillance. However, due to insufficient network resources and slow service provisioning, two months passed and the work order still had not been completed. As a result, the contracted SLA could not be implemented and customer churn occurred, leading to a loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
An upgrade from SDH to MS-OTN brings greater value
As new services such as high-bandwidth private lines and HD video emerge in the cloud era, metro network traffic has increased by a factor of 100. Maximizing existing fiber resources and deploying metro WDM have become industry trends. More than 80% of the top 100 operators have deployed metro WDM products. OTN devices can be seamlessly connected to SDH devices. Therefore, there is a consensus among operators to gradually replace SDH devices with OTN devices. This enables one network to carry various services. For example, consider what one particular operator has done. During metro WDM network construction, this operator upgrades traditional SDH private line services into OTN services. In this way, the private line customer experience is improved, and the efficiency of live-network resources is improved to attract potential private line customers, allowing the operator to achieve a positive return on investment (ROI) in two years.
Lack of experience and professional tools hinder SDH network reconstruction
SDH network reconstruction is a systematic process. Migration of a customer’s services varies by scenario and requires extensive engineering experience. Traditionally, migration depends on manual work and the network management system (NMS), which is time-consuming and labor-intensive. Drawing on customer feedback and engineering experience, Huawei has summarized the typical problems encountered in SDH reconstruction: 1) The service migration cannot be started due to inaccurate resource management system (RMS) information. 2) The priority of the network reconstruction cannot be determined due to uncertain customer service priorities. 3) The migration cannot be easily done because the effects of the reconstruction are unknown. 4) Manual migration is required during the reconstruction, which is labor-intensive, time-consuming, and error-prone.
A professional platform enables quick SDH network migration
Considering the four pain points of customers in the SDH network migration, Huawei has developed a one-stop solution based on the global network evolution and experience center cloud platform. The one-stop solution supports E2E migration solution design and migration deployment, implementing a visualized, manageable, and controllable migration process.
- Complex RMS information is streamlined with efficiency and accuracy
Live-network information collection and analysis: The solution obtains the script data of the live network from the NMS and uses tools to parse and convert network device configurations to restore services. The tool can automatically parse 150+ types of devices from 10+ vendors. For example, the multi-vendor (MV) data of 10,000 services can be parsed by the tool within 5 person-days, improving efficiency by 20 times.
- The solution identifies resource bottlenecks and determines service migration priorities to gradually reconstruct the network
Target network evaluation and planning: The solution restores network topology and service routes, evaluates and analyzes devices, services, capacity, and resource release after migration of redundant and inefficient services, and identifies resource bottlenecks efficiently. In addition, CAPEX and OPEX values before and after the migration are compared to determine the migration priority.
- The pre-verification of integration ensures that the solution is secure and controllable
Integration verification: Before the migration and deployment, multiple pre-verification tests, such as service connectivity, clock, and migration solution tests, are performed to avoid migration risks. This ensures that the solution is accurate and secure, and avoids adverse impacts on live-network services.
- Batch migration via tools improves efficiency and accuracy
Network deployment and migration implementation: The solution decouples ports from services to simplify relationships, and migration scripts can be exported in one click to implement batch service migration. In addition, scenario-based migration is supported, which enables isolation from the live network to minimize service interruption risks. Compared with manual delivery deployment, the deployment via tools is more smooth, efficient, and accurate, improving the average efficiency by more than 70%.
Take a project in one particular country as an example. At the end of 2017, Huawei and Operator M set up a joint project team to migrate nearly 100,000 services within 4 months, based on a customized migration solution. Compared with traditional reconstruction solutions, the customized solution improved the efficiency by more than 70%. After the reconstruction, the one-stop OTN solution broke through the network bottlenecks, released 85% of equipment room footprint, and reduced OPEX by 70%. At the same time, the new premium private line service has greatly enhanced the customer's experience. Operator M won orders from multiple potential high-value customers in 2018, realizing an upward business spiral.
Leveraging the experience and platform advantages, metro WDM networks are deployed to upgrade SDH networks
To sum up, as a result of the continuous development of cloud services, the government, banks, insurance companies, and the securities industries require hard pipes with high security, reliability, and sufficient bandwidth. Each year, more than 20% of traditional private line services need an urgent improvement in speed and quality to improve customer experience. Continuous SDH modernization by deploying metro WDM networks is the best strategy.
Huawei has provided 50+ operators with SDH modernization solutions and accumulated extensive experience through the migration of 100,000+ legacy SDH devices. Huawei plans to continue investing in technological innovation, perfect scenario-based solutions, and work with operators to build future-oriented high-speed networks, helping them achieve sustainable business success.
This content is sponsored by Huawei.