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Ciena Corporation : "Systems and Methods for Operational Simplification of Carrier Ethernet Networks" in Patent Application Approval Process

12/24/2013 | 03:02pm US/Eastern
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By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Politics & Government Week -- A patent application by the inventors HOLNESS, Marc (Nepean, CA); FROMM, Kelly D. (Newman Lake, WA); GORDON, Cory D. (Colbert, WA), filed on June 6, 2012, was made available online on December 19, 2013, according to news reporting originating from Washington, D.C., by VerticalNews correspondents.

This patent application is assigned to Ciena Corporation.

The following quote was obtained by the news editors from the background information supplied by the inventors: "Carrier Ethernet is evolving to support the needs of the carrier network environment. Carrier Ethernet requires scalable, reliable, and dynamic mechanisms to support operations, administration, and management (OAM) and traffic engineering (TE). Standards have been developed in the Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF), International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and the like providing many of these required extensions. Specifically, Connectivity Fault Management (CFM) is an Ethernet standard to provide many common OAM functions associated with underlying network transport for services. For example, CFM is defined in IEEE 802.1ag-2007 IEEE Standard for Local and Metropolitan Area Networks Virtual Bridged Local Area Networks Amendment 5: Connectivity Fault Management, the contents of which are herein incorporated by reference. Also, OAM functions are also defined in ITU-T G.8013/Y.1731 (07/2011) 'OAM functions and mechanisms for Ethernet based networks,' the contents of which are herein incorporated by reference. Further, the MEF also defines Ethernet OAM in various technical specifications, such as MEF 17 (04/2007) 'Service OAM Requirements & Framework,' the contents of which are herein incorporated by reference. Variously, CFM enables definition of maintenance domains, their constituent maintenance points, and the managed objects required to create and administer them; definition of relationships between maintenance domains and the services offered by Virtual Local Area Network (VLAN)-aware bridges and provider bridges; description of protocols and procedures used by maintenance points to maintain and diagnose connectivity faults within a maintenance domain; and the like.

"Conventionally, in Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement (e.g., Y.1731 ETH-LM), there is a requirement that both a local and remote end of an Ethernet Virtual Circuit (EVC) being monitored collect real-time service data traffic flow metrics at each end. For example, this can include a transmission frame reception counter (TxFCI) counting data frames transmitted toward the peer Maintenance End Point (MEP) and a receiver frame reception counter (RxFCI) counting data frames received from the peer MEP. It may be impractical for device implementations to persistently collect these service traffic flow metrics (i.e., TxFCI and RxFCI counters) associated with all configured EVCs within the network. For example, the device data collection and storage requirements to support this may not be scalable, especially as the number of EVCs within the network increases. To support persistent collection, device implementations require an over abundance of storage (e.g., memory) and processing capacity to be able to actively monitor all EVCs within the Service Provider's network. However, it is rare to have network elements without storage and processing capacity constraints to support persistent capture. Accordingly, support for performance monitoring capability is typically on an 'on-demand' basis and/or only for a subset of the EVCs within a Service Provider's network.

"With such typical implementations, the Service Provider still needs to perform a management action on both the local and remote peer NE involved in supporting an Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement (ETH-LM) monitored session. As a consequence, a typical device implementation of the ETH-LM protocol may require explicit notification of the EVC to be monitored, so that it can commence collection of the real-time service traffic flow statistics. As a result, when initiating an ETH-LM session, the network operator may need to 'touch' (via management actions) both the local and remote device prior to invoking the frame loss measurement. Multiple management actions at the local and remote devices to initiate an ETH-LM session is operationally inefficient and expensive. For example, there may be many EVCs within the network that may require monitoring of Y.1731 ETH-LM, and thus the multiplicative operational expense may be significant."

In addition to the background information obtained for this patent application, VerticalNews journalists also obtained the inventors' summary information for this patent application: "In an exemplary embodiment, an Ethernet method includes receiving a request to initiate an Ethernet Operations, Administration, and Maintenance (OAM) session at a local device, setting up the OAM session at the local device responsive to the request, transmitting a Protocol Data Unit (PDU) from the local device to a remote device with information related to the OAM session and the request contained therein, and receiving the PDU at the remote device and setting up the OAM session at the remote device based on the information in the PDU. The Ethernet method can further include initiating the OAM session through one of an operator issued command and an application, wherein the OAM session is initiated only at the local device without requiring operator involvement at the remote device. The information related to the OAM session can be located in counter fields in one of a Continuity Check Message (CCM), a Loss Measurement Message (LMM), and Loss Measurement Reply (LMR), and wherein provisioning information for the remote device can be contained in at least one Type-Length-Value (TLV) field of the PDU. The PDU can include a first PDU, and the method can further include collecting remote frame counters for the OAM session at the remote device; and transmitting a second PDU from the remote device to the local device with data related to the remote frame counters contained therein. The Ethernet method can further include receiving the second PDU at the local device; and performing a computation for the OAM session based on the data related to the remote frame counters contained. The provisioning information related to the OAM session can be located in at least one Type-Length-Value (TLV) field of the first PDU and the data related to the remote frame counters is located in counter fields of the second PDU.

"The Ethernet method can further include transmitting PDUs between the local device and the remote device; collecting remote frame counters for the OAM session at the remote device; and exchanging information between the local device and the remote device in Type-Length-Value (TLV) fields of the PDUs for setting up a measurement associated with the OAM session. The Ethernet method can further include upon termination of the OAM session, stopping the collecting remote frame counters at the remote device and stopping collecting local frame counters at the local device. The Ethernet method can further include terminating the OAM session at the local device based on session parameters provided during the initiating; and terminating the OAM session at the remote device based on non-reception of PDUs associated with the OAM session during a time window. The Ethernet method can further include collecting frame counters at each of the local device and the remote device only while the OAM session is active; exchanging information including the frame counters between the local device and the remote device in counter fields in one of a Continuity Check Message (CCM), a Loss Measurement Message (LMM), and Loss Measurement Reply (LMR); and exchanging provisioning information related to duration, frequency, and configuration data in at least one Type-Length-Value (TLV) field of the PDU.

"The Ethernet method can further include discarding the first measurement at the remote device by the remote device not responding to a first PDU can include Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement. Optionally, the Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement is single-ended, wherein the PDU includes a Loss Measurement Message (LMM) with local frame counter data contained therein, and the method can further include receiving the LMM at the remote node and programming an Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement engine to commence collection of per frame counters from the local node; composing an Loss Measurement Reply (LMR) to the local node and providing data from the collection in the LMR; receiving the LMR at the local node and computing frame loss based on the data from the collection in the LMR. Alternatively, the Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement is dual-ended, wherein the PDU includes a first Continuity Check Message (CCM) with local frame counter data contained therein, and the method can further include receiving the first CCM at the remote node and programming an Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement engine to commence collection of per frame counters from the local node; composing a second CCM to the local node and providing data from the collection in the second CCM; receiving the second CCM at the local node and computing frame loss based on the data from the collection in the second CCM. The Ethernet method can further include utilizing at least one Type-Length-Value (TLV) field of the PDU to exchange data between the local device and the remote device for any Connectivity Fault Management service that requires setup at both the local device and the remote device thereby avoiding the setup at the remote device.

"In another exemplary embodiment, an Ethernet node includes at least one port communicatively coupled to a remote device; a processing entity associated with an Ethernet connection on the at least one port, wherein the processing entity includes instructions that, when executed, cause the processing entity to: initiate an Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement session at the Ethernet node; set up the Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement session through collecting local frame counters; transmit a Protocol Data Unit (PDU) to the remote device with information related to the Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement session contained therein; receive a response PDU from the remote device with information related to the Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement session at the remote device contained therein; and calculate Ethernet Frame Loss based on the response PDU. The Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement session can be initiated through one of an operator issued command and an application, wherein the Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement session is initiated only at the Ethernet node without requiring operator involvement at the remote device. The PDU and the response PDU can utilize at least one Type-Length-Value (TLV) field to exchange provisioning information between the Ethernet node and the remote device for any Connectivity Fault Management service that requires setup at both the local device and the remote device thereby avoiding the setup at the remote device.

"In yet another exemplary embodiment, an network includes a plurality of interconnected nodes; a local processing entity at a local node of the plurality of interconnected nodes, wherein the local processing entity includes instructions that, when executed, cause the local processing entity to: initiate an Frame Loss Measurement session at the local node; set up the Frame Loss Measurement session through collecting local frame counters; transmit a Protocol Data Unit (PDU) to a remote node with information related to the Frame Loss Measurement session contained therein; receive a response PDU from the remote node with information related to the Frame Loss Measurement session at the remote note contained therein; and calculate Frame Loss based on the response PDU; and a remote processing entity at the remote node of the plurality of interconnected nodes, wherein remote local processing entity includes instructions that, when executed, cause the remote processing entity to: receive the PDU and set up the Frame Loss Measurement session through collecting remote frame counters; and transmit the response PDU with the information related to the Frame Loss Measurement session at the remote note based on the remote frame counters. The Frame Loss Measurement can include one of an Ethernet Frame Loss Measurement and a Multiprotocol Label Switching-Transport Profile Frame Loss Measurement

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING(S)

"Exemplary and non-limiting embodiments of the present disclosure are illustrated and described herein with reference to various drawings, in which like reference numbers denote like method steps and/or system components, respectively, and in which:

"FIG. 1 is a network diagram of an exemplary Carrier Ethernet network configured with Ethernet Operations, Administration, and Maintenance (OAM) mechanisms;

"FIG. 2 is a block diagram of an Ethernet connection between two processing entities;

"FIGS. 3-7 are a flowchart of an Ethernet OAM method between two processing entities;

"FIGS. 8A-8D are a block diagram of Ethernet OAM Protocol Data Units (PDUs) including a general PDU (FIG. 8A), a CCM (FIG. 8B), an LMM (FIG. 8C), and an LMR (FIG. 8D); and

"FIG. 9 is a block diagram of an exemplary implementation of a network element."

URL and more information on this patent application, see: HOLNESS, Marc; FROMM, Kelly D.; GORDON, Cory D. Systems and Methods for Operational Simplification of Carrier Ethernet Networks. Filed June 6, 2012 and posted December 19, 2013. Patent URL: http://appft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&Sect2=HITOFF&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsearch-adv.html&r=3524&p=71&f=G&l=50&d=PG01&S1=20131212.PD.&OS=PD/20131212&RS=PD/20131212

Keywords for this news article include: Ethernet, Area Network, Ciena Corporation.

Our reports deliver fact-based news of research and discoveries from around the world. Copyright 2014, NewsRx LLC

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