OIF carriers define requirements for NNI

May 3, 2002--Carrier members of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) have agreed upon a Network-to-Network Interface (NNI) that specifies needs for the establishment and control of automatic connection between SONET/SDH and optical transport layers.

Carrier members of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) have agreed upon a Network-to-Network Interface (NNI) that specifies needs for the establishment and control of automatic connection between SONET/SDH and optical transport layers.

The NNI would allow carriers to more easily build and operate intelligent optical networks consisting of multiple vendors. The OIF's Carrier Working Group announced the NNI plans at the Forum's quarterly meeting in Boston last week. The OIF also announced that a record number of technical documents have moved forward in the Implementation Agreement (IA) process, including the SFI-5 (OC-768 SERDES-Framer Interface), which has now been approved to move to the final ballot stage.

"The OIF continues to propel the industry forward with its technical work," contends Sid Chaudhuri, OIF president. "The Forum's carrier members are really helping us define the direction that the industry is taking on true interoperability. The overwhelming number of ballots proposed at this meeting is quite exciting in these challenging economic times."

Tom Palkert, systems architect at AMCC, was appointed to the board of directors. As a member of the board, Palkert will assist in overseeing the long-term direction of the Forum and coordinate the efforts of the OIF's working groups.

NNI Carrier Requirements

The NNI applications defined by the OIF's Carrier Working Group are targeted at control plane interworking between different network segments such as metro and core and between multi-vendor network domains. The requirements address near-term needs for automatic connection management within a single carrier across various control domains. In the OIF network model, each control domain provides connection and routing control services while allowing different representations of information and distributions of control.

"It is very encouraging to pass along a list of requirements to the vendor members of the OIF for NNI applications," asserts John Strand, chairman of the OIF Carrier Working Group. "Ultimately, the OIF plans on a number of IAs to support this technical work. In the meantime, we are sharing the NNI document with the IETF, ITU, TMF, T1M1, and T1X1 groups to facilitate closer integration of the various efforts in this area."

Launched in April of 1998, the OIF (Fremont, CA) is a non-profit organization with more than 300 international member companies, including many of the world's leading carriers and vendors. As the only industry group uniting representatives from data and optical networks, the OIF helps advance the standards and methods of optical networks. For more information, visit the forum's Web site at www.oiforum.com.

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