• United States
by Steve Taylor and Joanie Wexler

The Frame Relay Forum’s most significant contribution to the industry

May 27, 20032 mins

* FRF-13 continues to specify service level measurement parameters

In continuing our review of our first 10 newsletters from five years ago, one topic continues to stand out: the need for accurate, measurable, and enforceable service-level agreements.

In our newsletter of June 26, 1998, we reported that the Frame Relay Forum was expected to ratify the FRF-13 implementation agreement for service-level definitions.  Indeed, the forum did ratify the agreement, and even today this stands as an important milestone.

FRF-13 isn’t an SLA in itself.  Instead, FRF-13 provides the fundamental parameters that can be measured.  In particular, it specifies what is reasonable to measure, where these parameters should be measured, and what’s not reasonable to measure.  This is key because it’s not reasonable to promise any parameters that can’t be easily measured.  At the same time, it’s not reasonable to expect service providers to be responsible for aspects of network that they don’t control.

Today, FRF-13 is as applicable as ever.  In fact, the impact of this document has reached significantly beyond the frame relay market.  We’ve referenced this document many times as the prototype for service-level definitions for any packet service – whether it’s frame relay, ATM or an IP-based service.  In fact, we’ve even written entire service definitions for IP services with all of the performance parameters adapted directly from FRF-13.

It’s nice to know that there are occasional documents that are keepers.  Whether you’re implementing frame relay services or not, you need to be familiar with this document.  It may well endure as the most significant contribution that the Frame Relay Forum ever made to the industry.