Carrier Ethernet

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Carrier Ethernet

A standard for carrier-class Ethernet services for network service providers. Carrier Ethernet extends Ethernet from the local area network (LAN) to the wide area network (WAN), enabling companies to connect their Ethernet LANs to service provider networks via the same Ethernet interface they use to attach every device in the network. It provides a transparent LAN service that bridges LANs in separate locations together as if they were one network. An administrator can manage a global Ethernet network using virtual LAN tools, which group computers together logically no matter where they physically reside. See virtual LAN and carrier class.

Using traditional TDM and SONET backbones, service providers have taken days and weeks to establish wide area networks for new customers and make subsequent changes. Since Carrier Ethernet connects to a LAN using Ethernet plugs and sockets, new customers can be hooked up to Gigabit Ethernet and 10 Gigabit Ethernet interfaces in a much shorter time. See TDM and SONET.

From Local Networks to Subscriber Networks
Residing within a building or campus, almost all business networks are Ethernet. In order to extend Ethernet to a global network that serves multiple customers, Ethernet had to be extensively upgraded to handle fault tolerance, levels of service and continuous changes in a timely manner. For detailed information about the standards, visit the Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) at

MPLS for Service Quality
Most LAN traffic is IP based; therefore the bulk of all Carrier Ethernet traffic is IP packets. Since MPLS is a method for providing quality of service (QoS) in an IP network, it can also be used to ensure quality levels in a Carrier Ethernet network. See MPLS and QoS.

Carrier Ethernet Over SONET
Although Carrier Ethernet is designed to transport Ethernet frames natively (layer 2 in the OSI model), network providers can deploy it over legacy point-to-point SONET circuits. Carrier Ethernet can also ride directly over fiber (see WDM).

Ethernet Virtual Connection (EVC) Topology
Carrier Ethernet is based on a virtual connection between two user network interface (UNI) points. An "E-Line" is one EVC (point-to-point), whereas an "E-LAN" offers a multipoint EVC topology just like any local network. See Metro Ethernet.

Private or Virtual Point-to-Point
There are two types of point-to-point E-Line connections: an Ethernet Private Line (EPL) is a dedicated connection between two points, whereas an Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL) is shared with other network connections.

Multipoint Topology
An E-LAN provides a multipoint topology like a local network. Each node can reach any other node.
References in periodicals archive ?
BellSouth Ethernet Service certified by Metro Ethernet Forum
Centec's E310 and E810 systems are Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF)-9 and 14 certification-ready carrier-grade Ethernet access/aggregation switching systems that provide rich metro features and are optimized for advanced QoS (including hierarchical QoS), Ethernet OAM efficiency, and L2/L3 VPN and Virtual Private LAN (VPLS) functionality.
Our two newest members exemplify the fact that Metro Ethernet's advantages of lower cost and greater service flexibility are attractive to both incumbent and challenger service providers alike," said Ron Young, chairman of the board of the Metro Ethernet Forum.
In addition, Draer will serve as a Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) ambassador during the Ethernet Wholesale Summit 2010 event taking place as part of the MPLS & Ethernet World Congress 2010.
Curran's appointment to the MEF board is a further testament to the fast-growing relationship between the Metro Ethernet Forum and the cable industry.
The IP/MPLS Forum announced today the commencement of a new work item by members including operators and vendors of the forum to develop a new set of MPLS-based specifications and requirements supporting Carrier Ethernet Services as defined by the Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF).
OpVista's MEF 9 certification and its membership in the Metro Ethernet Forum further underscores the company's dedication to providing Carrier Ethernet Transport to service providers," said Winston Way, Chief Technology Officer.
For more information on MEF standards for Carrier Ethernet, please visit the Metro Ethernet Forum website at: www.
The Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) is a global industry alliance comprised of 100 organizations including telecommunications service providers, network equipment/software manufacturers, semiconductor vendors and testing organizations.
The purpose of the showcase is to demonstrate viable solutions from work ongoing in the IP/MPLS Forum and the Metro Ethernet Forum that allow operators to migrate from ATM and TDM backhaul solutions for mobile networks to ones using Ethernet and IP/MPLS.
Lucent's carrier-grade Ethernet solutions are being featured at the Carrier Ethernet World Congress (CEWC) 2006, the official conference of the Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) in Madrid, Spain, September 26-29, 2006.
The Metro Ethernet Forum, a non-profit organization created to accelerate the adoption of Ethernet in metro networks worldwide, consists of more than 60 member companies representing a range of leading Ethernet service providers, major incumbent local exchange carriers, top network equipment vendors and other prominent networking companies.

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