Combining Ethernet and MPLS
Innovation in Access and Metropolitan Area Networks
A Kubernan IT Innovation Report
by Jim Metzler for Metrobility
Published July 2005; Posted July 2005
There can be no doubt that both business and residential subscribers would derive significant benefit from higher speed connections to the public network. However, the traditional suite of TDM access connectivity options and legacy Layer 2 WAN services are too expensive on a cost per Mbps basis to allow subscribers to purchase all the bandwidth that they could viably use.
A more cost-effective access technology would allow service providers and enterprise IT organizations to eliminate the access bottleneck while simultaneously opening the door to a wide range of additional value added services. These services include higher speed Internet access, VoIP, broadcast video, Video on Demand (VoD), Transparent LAN Services (TLS), and remote storage options.
As Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) continues to gain acceptance as a mainstream backbone technology, service providers are extending MPLS functionality into the metropolitan and access network segments in order to further simplify their networks and develop a true end-to-end architecture for the delivery of packet data services. This paper will be devoted to a discussion of the complementary nature of Ethernet-in-the-first-mile (EFM) and MPLS and the innovative role that they will play in the next generation access network.
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