OIF to Host Public Workshop on 100G Developments

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) will host a public workshop addressing the latest developments in 100G Serial, immediately following OFC 2016 in Anaheim, California. The event, OIF Workshop – 100G Serial Electrical Links and Beyond, is open to the public and scheduled for Thursday, March 24, 2016, from 12:30 pm to 6:15 pm at the Anaheim Marriott Hotel. The workshop will feature subject matter experts from the OIF and will include an industry view presented by Dale Murray, Principal Analyst at LightCounting Market Research.

“This event presents an opportunity for members of the larger optical networking industry to see the technical direction of 100G Serial,” said Tom Palkert, OIF Physical & Link Layer Working Group Vice Chair – Electrical, System Architect at Molex. “100G developments are evolving rapidly – companies that are prepared with interoperable solutions will have a distinct advantage.”

The deadline to register is March 17, 2016. Registration fee includes a one-hour cocktail reception. For details including registration information, please click HERE.

Two working sessions led by OIF subject matter experts will focus on 100G serial application requirements and 100G serial electrical technology.

Session 1 – 100G Serial Application Requirements

1:40 pm -2:20 pm:  Networking Trends – Matt Traverso, Principal Engineer, Cisco Systems, Inc.

2:20 pm – 3:00 pm:  Cloud Scale – Brad Booth, Principal Architect, Microsoft Azure Networking

3:00 pm – 3:40 pm:  Storage and CPU – Scott Kipp, Senior Technologist, Brocade

Session 2 – 100G Serial Electrical Technology

4:00 pm – 4:40 pm:  PAM Options – Atul Gupta, Chief Technologist, MACOM

4:40 pm – 5:20 pm:  100G Connectors/Cables – David Helster, Director, Signal Integrity and System Architecture, TE Connectivity

5:20 pm – 6:00 pm:  Alternate Modulation – David Stauffer, Senior Engineer, Kandou Bus, S.A.

6:00 pm – 6:15 pm: Wrap up – Tom Palkert

6:30 pm – 7:30 pm:  Reception

 

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

 

OIF Launches Flex Coherent DWDM Framework Effort, Elects New Officers

Members of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) are working to specify a framework for Flex Coherent DWDM Transmission in the application fields of long haul, metro, and data center inter-connection. The framework will build upon work the OIF completed for 100G LH DWDM and provide guidance for 400G.

“We’ve discussed the hardware implications of SDN for a couple years now,” said Junjie Li, of China Telecom and OIF board member. “We need to move away from fixed performance transceivers in order to provide Service Providers with a flexible solution, complete with software ‘knobs’ that can be dialed-in to achieve the desired performance.”

Dynamic networks require flexibility in reach, data rate, and spectral efficiency. This can be accomplished through the following flexible transceiver attributes: modulation formats, symbol rates, and number of subcarriers. Flex Coherent DWDM will outline a software-defined optics ecosystem that initially leverages past and current OIF projects for tunable lasers, high bandwidth PMQ modulated transmitters and integrated coherent receivers. The Flex Coherent DWDM Transmission will start with the following modulation formats suitable for different scenarios; QPSK, 8QAM, 16QAM for long haul and metro applications and 32QAM, 64QAM for data center inter-connection applications.

Board Elections

The OIF announced the results of its recent leadership elections, welcoming Peter Landon of BTI Systems as the chair of the Networking & Operations Working Group committee for 2-year term.

Newly elected to the Board of Directors are Ian Betty of Ciena for a 2-year term, Tom Issenhuth of Microsoft for a 2-year term and Mike Tessaro of Qorvo for a 1-year term. Junjie Li of China Telecom was re-elected to the board for a 1-year term. John McDonough of NEC America will serve as president. Dave Brown of Alcatel-Lucent continues to serve as VP of Marketing and Dave Stauffer of Kandou Bus continues to serve as secretary/treasurer.

OIF Day at Huawei Technologies

In conjunction with the Forum’s recent quarterly meeting in Shanghai, the OIF and Huawei Technologies hosted a day of interactive and educational workshops featuring OIF and Huawei Technologies subject matter experts. Topics covered included OIF projects and technical work, intelligent optical networking, and 400G. The exclusive event was focused on helping attendees understand system vendor challenges and strategies, strengthening member/executive support for the OIF and establishing an input and validation process for strategic/project planning.

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

OIF to Display 400G CEI 56G Interfaces, Discuss SDN Work at ECOC

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) will showcase the “Next Generation of Pluggable Modules” to ECOC attendees at the Forum’s booth #345 in Valencia, Spain, September 28-30. OIF representatives will also present sessions on the Forum’s latest work on 400G and SDN.

On September 25th, the OIF and global telecom carrier Orange will host an interactive and educational workshop at the Orange Labs in Issy les Moulineaux near Paris. The event features subject matter experts from the OIF and Orange addressing intelligent optical networking, Transport SDN and 400G, as well as OIF projects and directions.  This event is the latest of a series of OIF Day programs held with select carriers and optical vendors to inform them on the latest developments in optical network physical and control interfaces and exchange views on future directions in the optical networking industry.

 OIF at ECOC – “Enabling the Next Generation of Pluggable Modules”

The OIF will show 56Gb/s NRZ and PAM4 electrical interfaces as well as pluggable coherent optics demonstrations at ECOC in booth #345. The demonstration will include CFP2-ACO, showing key components of the ecosystem necessary to accelerate the movement of coherent optics into the pluggable realm. The two Common Electrical Interface (CEI) demos address the fourth generation CEI-56G. These demos show the next generation electrical data rates in chip to module implementations. The current efforts include the definition of both PAM4 and NRZ modulations to enable 56Gb/s electrical interfaces across diverse industry applications.

OIF Presentations at ECOC Market Focus Theater

Monday, September 28 – 2:05-2:35 pm
Topic: OIF’s CEI 56G Interfaces – Key Building Blocks for Optics in Next Generation 400G Data Centers
Presenter: Ed Frlan, OIF Physical & Link Layer Interoperability Working Group Chair, Semtech

Tuesday, September 29 – 1:35-2:05 pm
Topic: Gearing up for Transport SDN Deployment – a starter kit for early adopters
Presenters: Christophe Betoule, Orange and Jonathan Sadler, OIF Technical Committee Vice Chair, Coriant

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

 

OIF Technical Work Continues at Rapid Pace With 400G White Paper, New Implementation Agreements

Continuing a tradition of producing timely, relevant technical work, the members of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) have published a whitepaper that provides the carrier perspective on 400G technology options and its impact on future high-capacity WDM applications. The Forum also approved implementation agreements that outline service provider requirements for Neighbor Discovery and updated specifications for the industry standard Integrable Tunable Laser MSA.

In an effort to bring order and clarity to the race to build 400G transport solutions, the OIF’s 400G whitepaper summarizes the technology options for specific applications such as long-haul, metro and data center interconnect. Entitled “Technology Options for 400G Implementation”, the whitepaper provides a consensus from carriers on the specific system parameters and network requirements needed for 400G to support increased bandwidth demands in optical networks.

“As the industry moves forward towards 400G-transmission speed, it is crucial to have carriers and vendors working together, as was achieved with 100G optical interfaces,” said Karl Gass, of Qorvo and the OIF PLL working group vice-chair, optical. “This whitepaper summarizes the requirements by carriers for specific technology applications, and we expect to start projects to define the best, near term solutions for 400G networks.”

Implementation Agreements Approved

Service providers need to streamline and reduce cost of operating their optical networks; one way is to reduce manual effort by automating link configuration processes. Automating the process of link identification and exchanging the link configuration data is known colloquially as Neighbor Discovery. The ITU-T has defined an architecture and protocol for Neighbor Discovery in G.7714 and G.7714.1, but implementation of the specifications has been limited. The OIF’s “Neighbor Discovery Implementation Agreement 1.0” utilizes ITU-T specifications to support the exchange of:

  • Identity of the network element port connected to the far end of the link,
  • Data-plane capability of the network element ports on each link end,
  • Management-plane details for each link end,
  • Control-plane details for each link end.

The resulting specification provides carriers with an interoperable solution complete with use cases, requirements, procedure and protocols conforming to the ITU-T’s specifications.

The OIF continues to build on the industry standard for tunable lasers established by the forum six years ago. The OIF has updated the existing MSA and assembly IA to add the functionality needed for next generation, highly flexible networks.

The Integrable Tunable Laser Assembly MSA (ITLA-MSA 1.3) and Micro – Integrable Tunable Laser Assembly IA (OIF-MicroITLA-01.1) updates add the provision of high resolution registers and raises the protocol version to 3.0.0.

The 400G white paper and implementation agreements can be found here.

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

It’s Getting Hot In Here!

In an effort to help optical module suppliers and system designers reduce heat and thermal management issues, the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) has approved a thermal interface implementation agreement (IA) for pluggable optics modules. The agreement summarizes the information to be provided by module suppliers to facilitate thermal integration of
the module within the host system. It also defines the requirements and methods for testing a thermal interface between a pluggable optical module and the hostsystem heatsink.

“When optical modules are mated with heatsinks, the goal is to remove over 90% of
the heat through the interface area into the airflow stream via the heatsink,” said
Torsten Wuth, of Coriant and the OIF Physical Layer User Group Working Group chair.
“Nominal ranges of heat flux are defined as Power Density classes. The OIF
agreement defines acceptable thermal impedances for the contact area for various
pluggable module types and a method of measuring the impedance.”

The OIF previously addressed various methods that could be employed by system
designers to reduce the temperatures of modules in air-cooled systems in the
Thermal Management at the Faceplate white paper. Those methods included the
direction of airflow over the modules, internal system baffling to direct airflow,
placement of the modules and other heat dissipating devices on the blade,
optimizing fin layout on the heatsink, and increasing the thermal conductivity of the
heatsink, as well as the importance of thermal contact resistance between the
module and the heatsink.

The new IA specifies generic interface properties but includes specific examples
such as, CFP, CFP2, CFP4, XFP, SFP, SFP+, QSFP, QSFP+, and CDFP. Of primary
concern are interfaces where the pluggable module slides through the faceplate and
under a spring-loaded heat sink. This type of interface has limited contact force
because the insertion and extraction force and force from the heatsink on the
connectors are limited.

For more information go to http://www.oiforum.com/documents/implementationagreements/

About the OIF

The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking
solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements
(IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market
adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and
electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies,
and to network control and operations including software defined networks and
network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of
national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only
industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking,
including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors,
component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF
can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

OIF Publishes Transport SDN Framework Document

Key Findings from 2014 Demo Inspires Framework Architecture

Fremont, Calif. – May 19, 2015 –Following a 2014 prototype demonstration event, the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) has approved an SDN Framework whitepaper that paves the way for implementation of SDN in Carrier Networks. The whitepaper, titled “Framework for Transport SDN:  Components and APIs”, documents the SDN framework for multi-domain carrier networks.  It identifies critical open APIs for Transport SDN based on synthesis of the SDN layered architecture and the ITU-T ASON functional element model for optical network control.

SDN identifies interfaces separating infrastructure and control layers, and control layer from application layer.  The interface between infrastructure and control layers is termed the SouthBound Interface or SBI, the interface between control and application layers is termed the NorthBound Interface or NBI, and provides APIs to the application.

“In 2014, the prototype demonstration brought together multiple vendors and carriers to test cloud-bursting services, utilizing SDN principles and interfaces,” said Lyndon Ong of Ciena and co-chair of the OIF Market Awareness & Education Committee.  “The demonstration results factored into the development of a framework that allows SDN to be deployed over a carrier’s network with multiple, diverse domains.”

One of the key findings from the demonstration was that the separation introduced by the NBI and SBI enables SDN to be applied over greenfield (i.e., OpenFlow) and brownfield environments, allowing integration of domains controlled by management systems and domains using existing distributed control planes as well as centralized SDN.  A variety of SBI protocols could coexist in the carrier’s Transport SDN network, including the OpenFlow protocol, with extensions for optical networks.

NBI is an area of particular importance; by providing access to ASON functional elements, the NBI opens up access to the network control plane and provides greater programmability of services, improving the speed of service deployment and overall manageability of the network.  Functional elements accessible via NBI in this framework include Call Control, Connection Control, Topology and Path Computation.

The document assesses where existing protocols may be used to support NBI access.  In addition to existing protocols, there are benefits from defining new REST-based interfaces such as were prototyped in the demo, based on a common information model.

For a copy of the SDN framework document http://www.oiforum.com/documents/technical-white-papers/

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com

The OIF Launches New Integrated Photonics Projects

Two Implementation Agreements Published for Industry Use

Fremont, Calif. – May 7, 2015– In the wake of the Optical Internetworking Forum’s April quarterly meeting in Lisbon, Portugal, the organization announced that initial work has begun on technical specifications for high bandwidth optical modulators and receivers for coherent applications. Members also approved implementation agreements for 100G applications. The Q2 meeting also saw several OIF technical committees meet to continue the Forum’s work on the FlexEthernet and Common Electrical Interface (CEI) projects begun in 2014. Finally, based on the success of technical demonstrations in 2014, Forum members held initial discussions regarding an SDN-focused demo for 2016.

“Our members are working at full capacity right now,” said Karl Gass, of Qorvo and the OIF Physical and Link Layer Working Group vice chair, Optical. “With as many as 19 documents going to ballot this quarter alone we are completing technical work at an extremely fast pace. These two new electro-optical component projects will fill a gap in the line side component space, providing systems engineers more tools to increase channel capacity beyond 100Gb/s.”

The utilized coherent ASIC Baud Rate is no longer sufficient information to define the frequency response requirements for coherent electro-optical (EO) components now that the industry has embraced the use of preconditioning. The High Bandwidth Polarization Multiplexed Quadrature Optical Modulator project enables coherent electro-optical modulation of a wider optical spectrum per optical carrier defined in terms of frequency response. The Intradyne Coherent Receiver project proposes an improved RF high frequency response that enables coherent electro-optic demodulation of a wider optical spectrum per optical carrier.

Implementation Agreements Approved for Public

The IA for Integrated Dual Polarization Micro-Intradyne Coherent Receivers targets coherent 100G PM-QPSK applications with nominal symbol rates up to 32 GBaud in a CFP2 form factor. This IA also defines a low speed electrical interface incorporating an SPI bus for control of the TIAs in the coherent receiver.

The IA for Generation 2.0 100G Long-Haul DWDM Transmission Module-Electromechanical applies to optical line interface applications. The IA reduces the size and power consumption requirements by defining a 4×5 module that can be used for 100G long-haul DWDM transmission applications.

For more information go to http://www.oiforum.com/documents/implementation-agreements/

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

OIF Members Lead the Industry in 56G Interfaces and Pluggable Coherent Optics

Collaboration Results in Groundbreaking Work

Fremont, Calif. – Feb. 24, 2015– Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) members are leading the market again in a live technology demonstration at OFC 2015 in Los Angeles, March 24-26, 2015, booth #613. The OIF Technology Showcase 2015 – It’s Happening Now – 56G Electrical Interfaces and Pluggable Coherent Optics will highlight the OIF‘s groundbreaking technology work. The Forum’s 4th generation Common Electrical Interface, CEI-56G, enables users to achieve new heights in CEI data rates. The technology showcase event will also demonstrate the OIF’s CFP2-ACO technology, a coherent optics transceiver module in a CFP2 form factor, an optimal medium-term solution to maximize faceplate density and minimize install costs for metro/regional DWDM and data center applications.

“The OIF has always demonstrated industry leadership, and this year at OFC is no exception,” says Nathan Tracy, technologist at TE Connectivity and the OIF technical committee chair. “From key industry presentations on Carrier, SDN, and physical layer topics, to demonstrating live hardware that conveys the progress on defining pluggable coherent optics, the OIF brings the sharpest minds in optical networking together to solve the toughest problems. Our work on 56Gb/s interoperable electrical channel agreements is addressing multiple modulation solutions. By attracting developers whose expertise range from test equipment to optics to electronics to connectors to equipment OEMs, the OIF is developing the ecosystems required by future datacomm architectures.”

Demos and Participants

Live and static displays at the OIF Technology Showcase 2015 – It’s Happening Now – 56G Electrical Interfaces and Pluggable Coherent Optics:

  • Live CEI-56G-VSR-NRZ Channel with Credo Semiconductor, Multilane, Tektronix, Yamaichi Electronics
  • Live CEI-56G-VSR-PAM QSFP Compliance Board with Anritsu, Molex, Multilane, TE Connectivity, Tektronix, Yamaichi Electronics
  • CEI-56G-VSR-PAM Optical Static Display (concept) with Molex, Multilane, TE Connectivity
  • Live CEI-56G-MR/LR-PAM Backplane with Keysight Technologies, Molex
  • Live CEI-56G-MR/LR-NRZ Backplane with Credo Semiconductor, Keysight Technologies, TE Connectivity
  • Live CEI-56G-MR-NRZ Passive Copper Cable with Credo Semiconductor, Keysight Technologies, Molex, TE Connectivity, Yamaichi Electronics
  • CFP2-Analog Coherent Optics – Pluggable Coherent Optics with Keysight Technologies, Multilane

Static displays of equipment aimed at developing the ecosystems for 56G electrical interfaces and pluggable coherent optics will include modules, test equipment, connectors, compliance boards, DSPs, drivers, transimpedance amplifiers and components from ClariPhy Communications, Finisar, Inphi, Kandou Bus, MACOM, Molex, MoSys, Multilane, NEC Corporation, Oclaro, Qorvo and TE Connectivity.

About the OIF Technology Showcase

OIF Technology Showcase 2015 – It’s Happening Now – 56G Electrical Interfaces and Pluggable Coherent Optics

OIF member companies will unite under the banner of the OIF to showcase multi-vendor participation in the OIF Technology Showcase 2015. The OIF’s Physical and Link Layer demonstration highlights live CEI-56G electrical interfaces. Also demonstrated is the emerging ecosystem for CFP2-ACO pluggable coherent optics, including subcomponents and test equipment.

A public demonstration will be on display at #OFC2015, March 24-26 in Los Angeles in booth #613. Additional info can be found at http://www.oiforum.com/meetings-and-events/oif-ofc-2015-2/

Presentations at OFC

Service Provider Summit – Panel 1: Value and Cost of Multi-Layer SDN
March 25, 2015 – 9:15am-10:45am
Panelist: Vishnu Shukla, OIF President

OIF Panel: Transport SDN – Clearing the Roadblocks to Wide-scale Commercial Deployment
March 25, 2015 – 2:00pm-3:00pm – EXPO Theater II
Moderator: Dave Brown, OIF VP of Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent
Lead Speaker: Vishnu Shukla, OIF President, Verizon
Speakers: Ruiquan Jing, China Telecom; Lyndon Ong, OIF MA&E Committee Co-Chair – Networking, Ciena; Jonathan Sadler, OIF Technical Committee Vice Chair, Coriant

OIF Panel: OIF CEI-56G – It’s Happening Now
March 26, 2015 -10:30am-11:30am – EXPO Theater II
Moderator: Nathan Tracy, OIF Technical Committee Chair, TE Connectivity
Speakers: Ed Frlan, OIF PLL Interoperability WG Chair, Semtech; Brian Holden, OIF MA&E Committee Co-Chair – PLL, Kandou Bus, S.A.; Tom Palkert, OIF PLL WG Vice Chair Electrical, MoSys

OIF Panel: System Architectures Using OIF CEI-56G Interfaces
March 26, 2015 – 11:30am-12:30pm – EXPO Theater II
Moderator: David Stauffer, OIF PLL WG Chair and Board Member, Kandou Bus, S.A.
Speakers: Ed Frlan, OIF PLL Interoperability WG Chair, Semtech; Edward Priest, Juniper Networks; Nathan Tracy, OIF Technical Committee Chair, TE Connectivity

 

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

OIF Tackles Incremental Bandwidth Increases with FlexEthernet

Significant Strides Made on SDN, APIs, CEI

As members of the Optical Internetworking Forum gathered last month for their first quarterly meeting of 2015, the organization launched a new project to enable flexible Ethernet by providing a toolkit to expand the utility of existing and future Ethernet interfaces.  The new project, labeled FlexEthernet, provides a way for Ethernet equipment to more efficiently utilize optical link bandwidth. FlexEthernet toolkit provides channelization, bonding and sub-rate functionality to connect one or more Ethernet MACs using standard Ethernet PMDs between equipment, either directly or through transport links.

Building upon the OIF’s multi-link gearbox (MLG) work that addresses multilane configuration, FlexEthernet provides support for speeds in between and beyond the fixed speeds currently defined, driving a wider set of applications needed by data centers and carriers.

“Ethernet connections between routers or transport gear needs to be flexible by providing incremental increases in bandwidth,” said Nathan Tracy of TE Connectivity and the OIF’s Technical Committee chair.  “The proposed FlexEthernet toolkit bridges the gap between previous, current and next-gen rates.

At the quarterly meeting, OIF members prepared to approve the OIF’s SDN Framework, a technical white paper identifying components and interfaces requiring standardization to provide a cohesive SDN app development framework designed around Web 2.0 technologies. Members also made progress on developing implementation agreements for SDN APIs addressing Topology, Service Request, Connection Request and Path Computation.

“The OIF is ahead of the industry in identifying specific work that needs to be done to bring SDN to fruition,” said Jonathan Sadler, Coriant and the OIF’s Technical Committee vice chair.   “The API documents are the outcome of the prototype SDN demonstration that took place late last year. We have motivated, enthusiastic members working hard to finalize these APIs for service provider deployment.”

Members of the Physical and Link Layer Working group held a one-day interim meeting in addition to their usual three-day meeting discussing PAM4 and NRZ specifications as they continued work on the multiple CEI-56G projects.   The CEI-56G development work will increase the data rates by a factor of two over the data rate of CEI-28G while also defining new application spaces.  The group will hold another interim meeting before the Q2 meeting in April. For more information on the OIF’s CEI work see http://www.oiforum.com/technical-work/current-oif-work/

About the OIF
The OIF facilitates the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services. Members collaborate to drive Implementation Agreements (IAs) and interoperability demonstrations to accelerate and maximize market adoption of advanced internetworking technologies. OIF work applies to optical and electrical interconnects, optical component and network processing technologies, and to network control and operations including software defined networks and network function virtualization. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of national and international standards bodies. Launched in 1998, the OIF is the only industry group uniting representatives from across the spectrum of networking, including many of the world’s leading service providers, system vendors, component manufacturers, software and testing vendors. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.

OIF Launches New Project to Identify APIs for Transport SDN

Close on the heels of the joint Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) and Open Networking Foundation (ONF) Global Transport SDN demonstration that concluded in October, the OIF has launched a new project to develop implementation agreements (IAs) for the application programming interfaces (APIs) used between application and network controller during the event. The new initiative will build on the Service Request and Topology APIs prototyped in the demonstration, culminating in IAs for use by carriers and equipment vendors. The new initiative will also create IAs for Service Request, Path Computation, Topology and Link Resource Manager interfaces that have been identified as part of the OIF’s upcoming SDN Framework document. The APIs to be delivered by the new project are based on REST and JSON principles enabling rapid and flexible application development.

“The prototype Transport SDN demonstration revealed a lack of definition for how user applications interact with transport network applications and resource functions,” said Jonathan Sadler, of Coriant and the OIF technical committee vice chair. “The programmability of Transport SDN requires some of the internal interfaces used by ASON to become open.”

In particular, a Service API is important as it allows applications to request connectivity services from the network. Having a common Service API allows a variety of applications to access services provided by the network, particularly in an environment with multiple domains with potentially different underlying control methods.

During the Global Transport SDN demonstration, different domains supported a number of South-Bound Interfaces (SBIs) with the Domain controller, including vendor-specific, standard OpenFlow version 1.3, and OpenFlow with optical extensions. The use of a common Service API allowed the same application to be tested across these heterogeneous domains.

Similarly, the Topology API allows applications to understand the connectivity available in the network.  A common Topology API allows a variety of applications to access network topology information, enabling support for new constraints and service criteria.

The Global Transport SDN demonstration implemented a prototype Topology API. Different domains exported their topology information enabling path computation to be performed outside of the controller.  These paths could then be requested using the Service API.  Additionally, the Service API responses had references to links and nodes in the topology, enabling the activated path to be shown.

Leadership Elections

The Forum conducted its annual leadership election with Doug Zuckerman of Applied Communication Sciences and Junjie Li with China Telecom elected to the OIF board of directors for one-year terms. Officers re-elected to two-year terms include Dave Brown of Alcatel-Lucent, vice president of marketing; Dave Stauffer, of Kandou Bus, secretary/treasurer; John McDonough, NEC Corp of America, vice president; and Torsten Wuth, of Coriant, Physical Layer User Group working group chair.

About the OIF
Launched in 1998, the OIF is the first industry group to unite representatives from data and optical networking disciplines, including many of the world’s leading carriers, component manufacturers and system vendors. The OIF promotes the development and deployment of interoperable networking solutions and services through the creation of Implementation Agreements (IAs) for optical, interconnect, network processing, component and networking systems technologies. The OIF actively supports and extends the work of standards bodies and industry forums with the goal of promoting worldwide compatibility of optical internetworking products. Information on the OIF can be found at http://www.oiforum.com.