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The Story So Far From SUPERCOMM 2004:

The message from last year's SUPERCOMM conference has resonated clearly with vendors and exhibitors showing their wares in Chicago this week. Both carriers and enterprise users are sick and tired of managing the extreme complexity associated with network convergence, and if they can help it, they are not going to take it any more. To that end, the focus of many early announcements revolves around managing the complexity created by reconciling the alphabet soup of protocols and technologies that characterize next-generation-network management.

Testing for VoIP over MPLS

Attendees are watching with great interest to see what happens this week with the University of New Hampshire's InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL), as the talent there teams up with the European Advanced Networking Test Center (EANTC) to jointly showcase how VoIP can flow over an MPLS core. The test bed is also testing several proposed MPLS-related protocols, including Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS) and Hierarchical Virtual Private LAN Service (H-VPLS). These newer MPLS protocols will be tested in a "real-world" multi-vendor setting. (Editor's Note: A follow up on how they performed is in the works for later in the week.)

But the VoIP-over-MPLS demo is an important test, because if it is demonstrated to work effectively, it can facilitate carrier introductions of unified voice, data and video networks (the so-called triple play which at this point is less common in the networking industry than it is on baseball diamond.)

NEC Takes an Integrated Transport Approach to Optical Networking

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