From 8 - 12 May 2017 in Gent (Belgium), 35 engineers from 19 leading network equipment vendors met at the Excentis test labs in Ghent to demonstrate the Remote PHY (R-PHY) and MAC layer interoperability of their DOCSIS 3.1 equipment. After three days of testing, they presented the capabilities of the different 3.1 cable modems (CMs) and cable modem termination systems (CMTSs) to 50 representatives of European service operators (MSOs), during live demos. All participants were enthusiastic to see how well the R-PHY devices worked together with the participating CCAP Core.
As an independent, vendor-neutral expert center for cable and Wi-Fi network testing technologies, Excentis is the perfect host for an interop event, where vendors work alongside peers to test interoperability. While the 2015 and 2016 events at the Excentis labs focused on DOCSIS 3.1 interoperability testing, this year’s meeting focused on the new R-PHY technology. Developed as the standard for remote access architecture, R-PHY is still fairly new in the market. The event was therefore a great opportunity to provide guidance to vendors building solutions for the R-PHY architecture.
Ghent, center of DOCSIS knowledge.
The 19 vendors participating in the tests included CCAP solutions from Arris, Casa Systems, Huawei and Nokia. Additionally, Cisco participated with a CCAP Core to test interoperability with R-PHY nodes from Harmonic, MaxLinear, Teleste and Vector Technologies. Timing was provided by 1588 PTP grandmaster clocks from Microsemi and ADVA Optical Networking. Askey, Compal Broadband Networks, Hitron , Humax , Huawei, Intel, Ubee Interactive, Sagemcom and Technicolor participated with 3.1 cable modems/gateways.
Organizer Excentis, for its part, provided setup assistance and testing equipment, including its ByteBlower® IP traffic assessment tool and its XRA-31 DOCSIS Protocol Analyzer. The interop event was a première for the XRA-31. The protocol analyzer – an easy-to-use tool that provides real-time insight into DOCSIS 3.1 MAC layer.
Interoperability and speed
"It is key for our vendors to be able to test their equipment in a vendor-independent environment, with experts at hand to help them analyze and resolve possible issues,” says Wim De Ketelaere, CTO at Excentis. “At the end, everyone was delighted with the results, as they were able to successfully demonstrate the interoperability of the R-PHY architecture in an ecosystem consisting of R-PHY nodes, CCAP-core and PTP timing sources. Moreover, beyond product interoperability, the promised speeds of the (Euro)DOCSIS 3.1 gateways and DOCSIS 3.1 CCAP systems were proven. “Our ByteBlower® measured speeds – combined wired and wireless on a single 3.1 gateway – of 4.7 Gbps.”
Vendor-neutral center of expertise with top-notch equipment
“Excentis has the expertise and a well-equipped lab, and we’re absolutely vendor-neutral – all the right ingredients for a successful interoperability event,” Luc Martens, CEO of Excentis, concludes. “We were delighted to give developers the opportunity to fine-tune their products and then showcase them to the attending operators. For the Excentis experts, an interop event is a great way to interact with the network equipment manufacturers, vendors and operators, share expertise and hear about their challenges and needs – which is a must in a market that is evolving at dazzling speeds to meet consumer demands.”
Established in May 2000 as a spin-off company of Ghent University (Belgium), Excentis (www.excentis.com) offers testing and consulting services, specialized training and products for the telecom and ICT industry. The strongly held company values of integrity and vendor independence, combined with a well-equipped lab and proven expertise, make Excentis the European competence center to which cable operators, telecom operators and service providers can turn for unbiased technical support. Excentis also develops and sells test and monitoring products, like the ByteBlower TCP/IP traffic generator and analyzer (www.byteblower.com) and its XRA-31 DOCSIS Protocol Analyzer (www.XRA31.com), that makes the MAC Layer visible.
Excentis is headquartered in Ghent, Belgium.
For more information, please contact:
Luc Martens, CEO Excentis
T +32 9 269 22 91
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