Ciena releases CoreDirector FS for evolving networks to Ethernet and OTN

SEPTEMBER 28, 2009 -- The company has upgrade its switching platform upgraded with OTN, FlexiPorts, 1,000-node scale and tighter integration with CN 4200 for automated, end-to-end service creation.

SEPTEMBER 28, 2009--Network specialist Ciena Corp. has announced its CoreDirector FS multiservice optical switch, a comprehensive enhancement of the company's core optical switch that delivers new hardware and software features, including data, control, and management plane extensions, to support the transition from SONET/SDH architectures to next-generation Ethernet/OTN-based networks.

Fully interoperable with the global installed base of CoreDirector and CoreDirector CI switches, CoreDirector FS, along with the new 5400 family of reconfigurable switching systems (see "Ciena intros modular approach to IP/optical networks"), represent Ciena's next-generation switches for building service-enabling infrastructures that are designed for rapid service creation, agile service delivery, and providing a seamless transition to high-capacity converged Ethernet and OTN networks.

With mesh restoration capabilities, CoreDirector is deployed in both terrestrial and submarine networks at operators including AT&T, BT, Cable & Wireless, Sprint, Tata Communications, Telmex, and Verizon Business. CoreDirector was originally designed to automate the core of SONET/SDH networks via intelligent software-based automation and control plane-managed resiliency. CoreDirector FS retains those same capabilities while consolidating SONET/SDH, OTN, and Ethernet functionality in a single, high-capacity multiservice optical switch, which Ciena says will offer customers a simplified network architecture approach, reduced operational costs, and a flexible option to help migrate their network architectures from SONET/SDH to Ethernet and OTN to alleviate the strain of increased bandwidth demand from high-speed optical private line and packet services.

"A number of large global operators have relied on Ciena's CoreDirector platform, equipped with control plane and mesh restoration, to increase survivability on their submarine and terrestrial networks for quite a few years now," says Ron Kline, principal analyst, optical networks at Ovum. "Operators see the type of increased resiliency provided by OTN-based switching equipment, such as the CoreDirector FS, as essential to running their business."

CoreDirector FS adds new hardware modules and software features to the platform such as transparent service delivery with OTN switching; scalability up to 1,000 nodes in a single control plane domain; full C-band tunable, pluggable ULH DWDM interfaces; and new FlexSelect line modules with programmable ports and tighter integration with the CN 4200 FlexSelect advanced services platform.

With the introduction of OTN networking on CoreDirector FS, Ciena has extended the service flexibility and wavelength efficiency of CN 4200 beyond the metro and across a reliable, automated, and efficient regional, national, or global mesh core to maximize the profitability of optical services. Together, CoreDirector FS and CN 4200 provide an end-to-end software-automated optical layer to optimize the router layer. Ciena claims the platform's multiprotocol fabric and SONET/SDH-to-OTN gateway features enable CoreDirector FS to optimize and reduce the costs of metro hub offices by eliminating standalone SONET/SDH, OTN, and back-to-back DWDM muxponder equipment.

"Some of the largest network operators in the world use the industry-leading switching and restoration features of CoreDirector to create reliable and differentiated services for their end customers, which underscores our focus on continual, large-scale investment in enhancing the platform as a means to help our customers transition their networks to Ethernet and OTN," says Mike Aquino, senior vice president of global field operations at Ciena. "With CoreDirector FS, we've expanded the platform to include proven technologies from CN 4200 -- Ethernet, OTN, and FlexiPorts -- and data, control, and management plane extensions to enable the delivery of new services and applications from the wide-area core, through the metro, right out to the network service edge with point-and-click provisioning ease."

The converged multiservice capabilities are designed to address applications such as differentiated bandwidth wholesaling, resilient submarine cable landing networks, digital video and content distribution, and MEF-compliant E-Line services, among others.

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