FierceTelecom: You mentioned that OIF is conducting work on 100 Gbps networking. How will the adoption of PONP platforms and the ongoing move to IP fit into that migration?
Jim Jones: The niche of the OIF is within the network element or intra-system interface where we have a number of projects for high speed electrical interfaces within a circuit board or the backplane. Those are meant to be generic so they can apply to either packet or circuit-based systems and some module specifications on those boards. That was a major motivation to kick off our project in June because the silicon vendors have to make fairly substantial investments in their manufacturing capabilities and needed more clear evidence behind their customers (the system vendors) and the carriers.
Ong: The detailed work on 100 Gbps is being done by a lot of the systems and component vendor participants. When we were originally discussing the scope, a lot of it included input from the carrier group within the OIF to understand what their needs were. I think a lot of times there was input that asked for support for larger and larger traffic and also needing to push ahead work on 100 Gbps in such a way that it would be more cost effective.
FierceTelecom: In June, the OIF conducted an interoperability demonstration at Verizon's Waltham, Mass. lab to test EVPL services over packet (MPLS-based and PBB-TE) as well as SONET/SDH and OTN. What was revealed during that event?
Jones: Supported by six of the vendors and six of the carriers, the demo was a complete test because we covered multiple areas in the data plane, including layer forwarding (unidirectional, bi-directional, point to point and point to multipoint), OAM features (performance monitoring and alarming and QoS).
From a data plane perspective, we didn't have any technical findings, but we did have a number of control plane discoveries that we either put back into our specs or communicated back to the IETF as the owner of Generalized (GMPLS). One of the things we saw in this demo, which we see in all of our demos, was the level of multi-vendor interoperability depends a lot on the optional features and how the vendor chooses to support and how they're being exercised. That's a common theme we have in these demos in general. I think that was especially true on the MPLS base because Transport MPLS (TMPLS) is still in the process of becoming MPLS Transport Profile (MPLS-TP). A number of vendors were in different stages of that migration process. One of the motivations for having these in carrier labs is not do vendors get to put their equipment in front of potential customers, but the carrier also gets experience in the lab with these technologies in how they work and how they either fit or don't fit into their operations.
Click here to go back to part I of the interview