Last week I participated in the Metro Ethernet Forum’s (MEF) quarterly meeting in San-Diego, California.
This time around, along with marketing and technical sessions that are used by the MEF members to discuss Carrier Ethernet trends and develop Carrier Ethernet standards, they also organized “Americas Carrier Ethernet Summit” that brought together senior service provider executives to discuss Ethernet innovation. One of them was Dr. Robert Metcalfe, “the inventor of the Ethernet”, from the University of Texas at Austin who suggests that Carrier Ethernet 3.0 will be driven by new high-speed network technology, advanced broadband applications, and software-defined networking (SDN). As an MEF advisory director, he urged the MEF to collaborate with the Open Network Forum (ONF), a consortium looking to develop SDN standards.
Other speakers covered innovations enabled by CE 2.0 and how it is impacting their business and that of their customers. Mr. Terry Canning from Rogers Communications said that their customers appreciate Rogers’ investment in deploying a multi-service switch at their sites allowing them to increase bandwidth & add new services quickly and easily. Mr. Michael Rouleau from TW Telecom talked about evolving carrier networks for on-demand services that are available when and for as long as needed, and are secured, scalable, and with an expected user experience. Mr. Jarrett Appleby from CoreSite talked about data centers as the interconnection enabler, and the opportunity to build cloud-enabled data center campuses that leverage Ethernet as on-ramps.
SDN and cloud services continue to dominate industry debate. At the event people were discussing Ethernet access to the Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), data center inter-connect WAN services, and hybrid data centers that augment traditional on-premises data centers with cloud services. This drives the MEF to enhance current technical specifications and develop new ones in order to standardize delivery of cloud services.
At Telco Systems we believe that enterprises expect cloud-based services to provide the same level of experience as if the infrastructure was located locally. To make this happen cloud networks needs to offer assured capacity, security, resiliency, and in some cases, low latency. Cloud-based services must also be flexible enough to allow for real-time changes in bandwidth demand. Enterprises also expect to have visibility on how the quality of their service is behaving in real time.
This can be achieved using several tools and functions, including OAM tools for service activation, performance monitoring, fault management, service manageability, and Quality-of-Service (QoS) for better utilization of network resources. Additionally, interoperability is a key component that allows extended reach and decreased time to market.
Many of these have been provisioned within the MEF technical specifications and are being verified and tested by the CE2.0 program.
Telco Systems is proud to be one of the first companies to be CE2.0 certified.