2/19/2003 - Tektronix, Inc. (NYSE: TEK), a leading provider of test, measurement and monitoring tools for mobile network operators, announced its passive monitoring solution for an emerging technology growing in popularity as operators strive to maximize profits from third-generation (3G) investments.
In order to minimize costs during the early years of 3G network deployment, operators will re-use as much existing infrastructure as possible. Inverse Multiplexing for ATM (IMA), a technology that bundles present lower bandwidth (E1/DS1) network links to gain higher bandwidth (3G) backhaul capabilities, is proving to be a successful way to achieve this goal. However, in order to employ IMA, operators must have a non-intrusive monitoring tool that examines all lines without utilizing additional test equipment. By combining innate protocol monitoring for specific interfaces with seamless access to IMA links, Tektronix' new IMA monitoring software enables users to perform upper-layer protocol analysis in addition to retrieving information (statistics, alarms etc.) from the lower-layer IMA links.
"Tektronix is committed to enabling network equipment manufacturers and operators to be profitable," said Bob Agnes, Vice President, Monitoring and Protocol Test, Tektronix, Inc. "With Tektronix' innovative IMA monitoring support available on its proven protocol test platform, operators are equipped to control 3G expenditures by using the cost-savings benefits of IMA technology."
Re-Using Backhaul Links Reduces Cost of Transition to 3G
GSM network operators own a vast infrastructure of E1/DS1 hardware links connecting their Base Transceiver Station (BTS) to the Base Station Controllers (BSC). Ordinarily these individual links lack the bandwidth to handle the expected Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) traffic between the equivalent elements in a 3G network, namely, the Node-B (BTS in 3G networks) and the Radio Network Controller (RNC), respectively. IMA technology works by binding groups of these lower-bandwidth E1/DS1 links to form "virtual" high-bandwidth. By allowing network operators to take advantage of existing equipment, IMA makes it feasible for operators to achiever higher bandwidth without by minimizing infrastructure investments.
IMA Solution Monitors Links Passively
While most IMA monitoring tools interrupt lines carrying active network traffic (cutting off traffic on the link while the connection is being made), Tektronix' new IMA solution is the only one to monitor passively. The protocol tester can be connected to the E1/DS1 lines of interest (those using IMA) at any time without affecting live traffic, and there is no need to disconnect or re-start the links being monitored. Tektronix' IMA software automatically determines whether the links that make up an IMA group are correctly connected. Links that do not belong in the group are revealed in real-time. This automation dramatically simplifies the task of connecting E1/DS1 cables and reduces the risk of incorrect connections.
About the K1297-G20 Protocol Analyzer
The K1297-G20 is a full-featured, compact protocol tester that can be configured for a wide range of protocols. The instrument's hardware architecture is fully modular, and integrated "network processor" provides the flexibility to acquire and analyze complex data from diverse protocols in use around the world. The K1297-G20 supports multi-channel and multi-port protocol testing and incorporates a broad selection of conformance test suites. With broad support for GSM, GPRS, UMTS, and other protocols and interfaces, the K1297-G20 is enabling the industry's transition to 3G network technology.
Tektronix, Inc. is a test, measurement, and monitoring company providing measurement solutions to the communications, computer, and semiconductor industries worldwide. With more than 55 years of experience, Tektronix enables its customers to design, build, deploy, and manage next-generation global communications networks and advanced technologies. Headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon, Tektronix has operations in more than 20 countries worldwide. Tektronix' Web address is www.tektronix.com.
Tektronix is a registered trademark of Tektronix, Inc.
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