Migrating to Ethernet and MPLS: The Cisco Advantage
by Cisco Systems
Published 2005; Posted April 2006


Carriers are rolling out more Ethernet networks in metropolitan areas in order to take advantage of Ethernet's price and performance and its ubiquity within their enterprise customer base. Ethernet provides an ideal foundation for new services such as Layer 3 VPNs and virtual private LAN service (VPLS). However, a large installed base of Frame Relay and ATM customers still remains, and it would be cost-prohibitive and disruptive to simultaneously move those customers to Ethernet. Carriers would rather allow individual customers to gradually migrate at their own pace, while continuing to benefit from the investment and revenue stream of ATM and Frame Relay equipment and services that are already deployed within their networks. A slower transition requires interoperability between the newer Ethernet-connected sites and the traditional ATM- and Frame Relay-connected sites.

This paper describes some of the ways to achieve service interoperability and why the Cisco 12000 Series routers are well suited for such a role.


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