Ensuring optimum performance across the GÉANT network
Project Co-ordinator, DANTE, is responsible for the operation, management and development of the GÉANT network. With over 16 years of managing the world’s leading research and education network, DANTE has an established culture of operational excellence, and has been able to exploit emerging networking technologies to enhance and upgrade the GÉANT network and consequently the connectivity services it can offer through the NRENs.
The operation of the network incorporates two core tasks:
- Managing the network operation.
- Building the network of tomorrow.
Operational Network Management
DANTE’s operations department handles the co-ordination and execution of GÉANT's operational service provision. The department consists of the Operations Team, and the Network Operations Centre.
The operations team performs high level management of the GÉANT network. The team plans and supervises the deployment of new systems and services, and establishes service policies and procedures . The team liaises with those NRENs connected to the network via each NREN's dedicated access port manager (APM). This channel of communication ensures the smooth management of the flow of traffic onto and off GÉANT from the connected national networks.
The operations team also oversees the working of the European distributed access (EDA) nodes for intercontinental access, and the network's interconnections with commercial IP carriers, for routing traffic to and from commercial IP addresses.
Network Operations Centre (NOC)
Day-to-day management of the GÉANT network is handled by the network operations centre (GÉANT NOC) which is made up of two parts - the GÉANT Network Control Centre (NCC) and the GÉANT Service Desk (SD).
- The GÉANT SD acts as a first point of contact to receive reports of service problems and requests, 24/7, 365/366 days per year. It monitors basic network health and creates tickets for network incidents, planned maintenance and new service requests.
- The GÉANT NCC is responsible for diagnosing network problems, organising and overseeing repairs and maintenance, and configuring new services.
Building tomorrow's network
Bandwidth capacity requirements continue to grow, geographic reach needs to be extended and new networking technologies embraced to ensure the network can continue to fulfil the requirements of the research and education community and to maintain its world-leading status.
In parallel with operating the existing network infrastructure, research is ongoing into those emerging technologies, standards and equipment that will be built into the GÉANT of tomorrow.
- GÉANT research teams are in collaboration with industry, standards bodies and networks around the world to identify the optimum technological solutions.
- Analysis of emerging future networking technologies and research into new services is essential to bring innovation to the core network infrastructure and technological solutions for network control, management and service-provisioning across the GÉANT Service Area.
- Examples of such new services include the provision of higher capacity bandwidth services in a static manner (e.g. at 40Gbps and 100Gbps), the provision of more dynamic circuit services (e.g. classical "bandwidth on demand") and, looking a little further into the future, the provision of higher layer "composable" network services.
Moving to 40Gbps and 100GbpsTechnology evaluation and planning is underway to upgrade the network, to enable it to routinely accommodate 40Gbps, and to also reach 100Gbps. A field trial of 100Gbps over a distance in excess of 1,000 km over the GÉANT backbone is planned for 2010.
GÉANT has also implemented a stand-alone test network infrastructure for operational testing and research use within the GÉANT community. This test network includes Alcatel-Lucent switching equipment and Juniper routers located in several GÉANT PoPs.