Laurel routes broadband support to edge

Laurel Networks last week unveiled software for its edge router that lets carriers deploy the device as a broadband service delivery system.

PITTSBURGH - Laurel Networks last week unveiled software for its edge router that lets carriers deploy the device as a broadband service delivery system.

The company's Broadband Remote Access Server (BRAS) software for its ST200 router will pit Laurel against entrenched broadband aggregation router vendors such as Redback Networks and Juniper Networks, which acquired Redback competitor Unisphere Networks a year ago. Although Laurel is a late entrant to this market, analysts say there is demand for a high-performance BRAS system such as the one Laurel is proposing.

Currently, ST200 is used mainly for aggregating frame, ATM, IP and other traffic types for passage across carrier core networks.

"They already had all the ports, they already had all of the hardware," says Dave Passmore, research director at Burton Group. "Most of the BRAS platforms that are out there, like the initial Redback boxes, were really based on PC chassis. They don't scale to the kinds of bandwidth requirements in places like Korea."

The BRAS software features a capability Laurel calls Service Separation and Blending (SSB). SSB delivers high bandwidth per subscriber, advanced quality of service (QoS), and integrated routing and switching required for multimedia broadband service.

SSB blends packets from multiple services downstream over one broadband customer connection, while switching and routing separate upstream traffic to different content or service providers, Laurel says. It does this through per-service queuing and shaping, and intelligent separation of packet streams across multiple content networks, the company says.

ST200 supports more than 100,000 broadband sessions with classification, filtering, IP VPNs, multicast and QoS features enabled, Laurel says. The router supports more than 500 multicast channels.

Integrated ST200 per-subscriber bandwidth control eliminates the need for external bandwidth managers, such as ATM switches; and the ST200 is the first broadband remote-access server with OC-48 and OC-192 uplinks, the firm says.

The ST200 BRAS software is in trials with many service providers, and general availability is planned for the third quarter.


Copyright © 2003 IDG Communications, Inc.

The 10 most powerful companies in enterprise networking 2022