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You Light Up My Life: Luminescence Coming to OFC 2016

by Juniper Employee ‎03-16-2016 11:52 AM - edited ‎03-16-2016 11:57 AM

OFC 2016 is less than a week away, and I’m excited to see what innovative new photonic technologies will be unveiled at this year’s show.

In years past, the show introduced some game-changing innovations, such as 10G modem technology, the pre-cursor to coherent receivers; ultra-low loss fiber that can be tied in a knot which potentially eliminates residential fiber installation issues; and flex-spectrum ROADMs, paving the way for super-channel DWDM systems.


implifying your DC Network has many advantages for the IT Department: It becomes easier to handle, easier to upgrade, you need less training efforts and have more time to focus on high value activities like analytics and optimization. Simplification is an important step on the journey to the cloud.


It’s only a few days until the MPLS World Congress in Paris, so I thought I’d say some words about our live demo of NorthStar, our SDN WAN Controller.


One of the key applications of NorthStar is the creation of diversely routed pairs of LSPs. These are used to underpin services that have high SLA requirements - if something fails along the path of one LSP, the other is unaffected and so can still carry traffic. This is illustrated in Figure 1.


Figure 1: are these LSPs really diverse?Figure 1: are these LSPs really diverse?

But how do we know whether the LSPs are truly diverse? - they may appear to be diverse at the IP/MPLS layer, but there may be some fate-sharing in the underlying optical layer.


One option is to configure Shared Risk Link Group (SRLG) tags on the interfaces on routers P1, P2, P4 and P5 that share fate. These SRLGs are carried in the IGP alongside all the other link-state information and communicated to the NorthStar via IGP or BGP-LS peering. Another option is to configure the NorthStar conroller with SRLG info via the northbound REST API. However, in the conference, I will talk about a third option: a standards-based YANG-based data model [1] that enables an optical NMS to communicate essential information about the optical layer to the NorthStar controller. This allows the optical NMS to advertise Shared Risk Link Groups (SRLGs), so that NorthStar is aware of any fate-sharing. This dynamic approach provides a higher degree of automation than manually configuring SRLGs on the router interfaces, bearing in mind that the SRLGs could change over time, for example if the routing of paths through the optical network changes over time.


In Figure 2, the left-hand side shows details of the underlying optical infrastructure. As can be seen, the link between P1 and P4 shares fate with the link between P2 and P5, as they use the same optical fibre between optical nodes O3 and O4.


Figure 2: the left-hand side shows details of the underlying optical infrastructure. The right-hand side shows the resulting set of abstract links that are advertised by the optical controller to the packet controllerFigure 2: the left-hand side shows details of the underlying optical infrastructure. The right-hand side shows the resulting set of abstract links that are advertised by the optical controller to the packet controller

The optical controller describes the connections that it provides to the client packet layer in the form of abstract links, shown on the right-hand side of the slide. Abstract links allow key information (for example SRLGs and delay metrics) to be communicated to the packet controller, while hiding information that is not of interest to it, for example intermediate optical nodes in the end-to-path.


Let’s look at another example, this time with screen-shots from the NorthStar GUI. In Figure 3, the upper part of the network map shows the routers. The lower part shows abstract links and nodes that have been advertised by the optical controller. The table at the bottom of the screen shows SRLGs that have been advertised by the optical controller to NorthStar. The highlighted SRLG shows that the vmx10-p12 to vmx20-p22 link and the vmx10-p11 to vmx10-p21 link share fate (shown in yellow on the map).


Figure 3: NorthStar knows from the information it receives from the optical controller that the two highlighted links share fateFigure 3: NorthStar knows from the information it receives from the optical controller that the two highlighted links share fate

Figure 4 shows what happens if we ask NorthStar to perform a diverse path calculation between vmx10 and vmx20, taking SRLGs into account. As can be seen, NorthStar routes one of the LSPs via vmx30-p31, so that the two LSPs are truly diverse.


Figure 4: A pair of diverse LSPs, taking SRLGs into accountFigure 4: A pair of diverse LSPs, taking SRLGs into account


If you would like to hear more, come to my talk during the conference on Friday morning. Also we will be having live demos of the scheme on our exhibition booth for the whole duration of the conference. See you in Paris!



[1] draft-ietf-teas-yang-te-topo

We know the Internet has changed our lives. The world fits in our pocket. We video chat across the globe. We share and connect with friends instantly. Our office follows us. These are all made possible by connecting through a network. Our lives will continue to change. Transportation. Education. Healthcare. Law enforcement. All of these will be entirely different because networks will transform them. These transformations have already begun. In 2016, I expect to see the networking space specifically evolve in a few ways.


As we have moved out of 2015 and into 2016, we’ve had time to reflect on where the industry’s headed and what changes took place last year. The number of Internet users continues to climb 7.2 percent year over year with no end in sight. It is currently at 3.17 billion, which is up from 2.94 billion in 2014(1). The proliferation of smart devices, cell phones, and tablets are penetrating the far reaches of the globe, enlightening new people everyday.


As a motorsports enthusiast, one of the things that I have massive respect for is the brain’s ability to process information in extreme situations. The amount of data we can consume and process simultaneously is uncanny. It’s something I directly relate to, having raced motorcycles for many years. Making an assessment of a situation at nearly 170 miles per hour (mph) and translating that into action, while continuing to make adjustments based on the ongoing stream of incoming data requires massive processing power. Granted the brain is particularly good at this type of processing, but nonetheless as an “all purpose” compute tool it is one impressive centralized controller. Moving into 2016, we predict the network will operate more and more like a human brain, let me further explain.


Prediction from 2007 about core routers comes true early

by Juniper Employee ‎12-22-2015 06:44 AM - edited ‎12-23-2015 12:50 AM

A long time ago in a network not far away...


The MX series’ initial use case was Carrier Ethernet but it didn’t take long for its use cases to expand to a large number of applications, thanks to the consecutive improvements in software and hardware.


Fixed telecom operators are using the MX series in many critical parts of their networks to satisfy their most demanding needs for business success. This blog lists the top twelve use cases for MX!


The impact of the new requirements from LTE-A (and beyond) on the backhaul network are discussed by Patrick Donegan, from Heavy Reading, in this recently released white paper, and accompanying webinar.


The white paper discusses that to successfully support new features from LTE-A and VoLTE it is essential that the backhaul networks add new features which have not often been a requirement to date. Specifically, these include


  • Frequency synchronisation
  • Phase synchronisation
  • Very low latency access to the Security Gateway from the eNodeB for the handover interface

Jumeirah Hotels & Resorts is one of the most luxurious and innovative hospitality groups in the Gulf region, founded in 1997 with the aim of becoming an industry leader via a world-class portfolio of luxury hotels. It prides itself on providing its guests with the finest service quality, which makes their experience memorable and unique.



According to a recent survey, IT operators spend more than 52% of their time on repetitive tasks: basic installations, device configurations, monitoring, upgrades, individual device-level troubleshooting, etc.


This is no surprise. Today’s enterprise networks are highly complex, consisting of layers of switches with multiple VLANs and different management points, each requiring different tools. These not only consume a lot of time and resources, they  also add operational difficulty.


As the digital economy continues to transform the business landscape, radically altering the structure of competition, no organisation is immune to the disruptive innovation taking place across almost every market. Against this backdrop, and driven by mobile connectivity, cloud computing and social media, new customer experience models allow businesses to have an opportunity to engage with their consumers like never before, but reaction times are critical.


In this new world order, characterised by unrelenting competition, every organisation needs to adapt to rapidly changing market conditions and, where necessary, even find new ways of doing business. Such is the momentum from service innovation and new business models that every organisation is at risk of being disrupted, especially from ‘born in the cloud’ start-ups not constrained by legacy systems, or legacy thinking.


In this digitally-driven era, everything is about speed. Some companies are even talking about a culture where they have an idea in the morning, and put it into the marketplace by the afternoon.



Automation with SDN/NFV: go all in, or do something else

by Juniper Employee ‎11-11-2015 11:14 AM - edited ‎11-11-2015 11:48 AM

Any non-US citizen who’s visited the US will have experienced the “pleasure” of US immigration and the long wait to get your passport stamped. When I arrived at JFK airport this week I was happy to get access to the new Automated Passport Control machines that check your passport, fingerprints and take your picture. However, this delight was soon dealt a crushing blow. After leaving the machine, I realised that there was then a manual process to check that I looked like my passport picture and to get my passport stamped. Unfortunately, there was 35 minute wait for this final manual check.


My experience had illustrated how automation can be useless, and even a negative impact, unless 100% of the process is automated.


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