ETSI Plugtests™ test event confirms 'plug and play' interoperability of Gigabit-capable Passive Optical Networks

ETSI Headquarters, Sophia Antipolis, France – 9 July 2009

The latest ETSI Plugtests™ testing event has significantly advanced industry confidence in the interoperability of Gigabit-capable Passive Optical Networks (GPON).  This was the eighth event on the topic and successfully confirmed a 'plug and play' interoperability between various vendors' products.

The event was organized in June by ETSI and the Full Service Access Network Group (FSAN) with support from France Telecom, Telecom Italia and test tool vendors, and sponsored by the European Commission. Its focus was on verifying correct implementations of the ITU-T OMCI Implementers' guide (OMCI is the Optical Network Termination (ONT) Management and Control Interface). The testing was valuable as a validation of the clarity and consistency of that guide. This gives an assurance that future implementations based on the guide should be 'plug and play'.

The event was hosted by ETSI at its headquarters in Sophia Antipolis, France, and brought together 14 GPON equipment and integrated circuit device vendors. Using detailed Test Case descriptions provided by FSAN operators, the event enabled these vendors to run numerous test cases between each other, resulting in 55 half-day test pairing sessions in a period of one week.

However, beyond these pairing sessions that are regularly used at Plugtests™ events, a new test concept was successfully introduced for the first time. This was "Blindfold pairing" and was employed to create a more 'real world' situation for these particular products. Taking on the role of network operators, independent testing experts configured the Optical Network Termination themselves through the OLT using the OMCI layer without vendor intervention, as will be the case in practice, and then carried out the tests. 'Blindfold pairing' permitted a further 60 short pairing test sessions, each lasting a maximum of half an hour, and very effectively confirmed the 'plug and play' capabilities of the vendors' implementations.
The participating vendors were Alcatel-Lucent, Broadcom Corporation, BroadLight, Calix, Cambridge Industries, Comtrend, ECI, Ericsson, Huawei, PMC-Sierra, RAD Data Communication, Transwitch, Zhone Technologies and ZTE.  All vendors expressed their appreciation of the efficient organization of the event, as well as the support provided by ETSI, France Telecom, observers and test tool vendors.

Part of an ongoing series of GPON test events, this latest Plugtests™ event has brought industry confidence in GPON products to a high level, as observed by Regis Coat (France Telecom), Chair of the FSAN Interoperability Task Group, who said:
"The Sophia-Antipolis event showed that plug and play GPON interoperability is almost fully achieved. Thanks to the strategy FSAN operators have built in 2008, GPON vendors have now clear guidance to reach the target. We will be able to confirm the good maturity of the GPON technology again during the ninth test event which will take place in China in November 2009".

Paolo Solina (Telecom Italia), Chair of the FSAN Optical Access Network Working Group added:
"The decision to create an OMCI Implementers' Guide, which is now an ITU-T Standard, has been for FSAN the key element for the achievement of a full OMCI interoperability, as the Sophia Antipolis event has shown.".

Michael Shaffer – FSAN OMCI Implementation Study Group co-ordinator said:
'This event has shown that OMCI implementations can now support a full range of Ethernet based services in a mixed vendor environment. It goes well beyond the simple Ethernet pipe interoperability that has been demonstrated using other technologies'.

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Notes for Editors

About ETSI
ETSI produces globally-applicable standards for Information and Communications Technologies (ICT), including fixed, mobile, radio, converged, broadcast and internet technologies and is officially recognized by the European Union as a European Standards Organization. ETSI is an independent, not-for-profit association whose 766 member companies and organizations, drawn from 63 countries across 5 continents worldwide, participate directly in its work.
For more information please visit: http://www.etsi.org/  

About ETSI Plugtests™
As a complement to its core standards-making task, ETSI specializes in running interoperability test events for a wide range of telecommunication, Internet, broadcasting and multimedia converging standards.  Plugtests™ events are open to all companies, organizations, working and study groups implementing a standard. For information about ETSI Plugtests™ and upcoming events, please visit http://www.etsi.org/plugtests 

Plugtests™ and the ETSI logo are trademarks of ETSI registered for the benefit of its Members.

About FSAN
The Full Service Access Network (FSAN) Group is an interest group for the world's leading telecommunications services providers, independent test labs, and equipment suppliers to work towards a common goal of truly broadband fibre access networks. The FSAN group is an affiliation of international network operators and telecom vendors.
For more information: http://www.fsanweb.org

For more information about this event: For general ETSI press enquiries
Anthony Wiles
ETSI
Tel:  +33 4 92944387 
Email: anthony.wiles@etsi.org
Paul Reid, Events & Communications 
ETSI
Tel:  +33 4 92944219  
Email: paul.reid@etsi.org


For more information: http://www.fsanweb.org
Paolo Solina
Chair, FSAN Optical Access Network Working Group
Tel:  +39 011 2285298 
Email: paolo.solina@telecomitalia.it

Regis Coat
Co-Chair FSAN Interoperability Task Group
Tel:  +33 2 96052108 
Email: regis.coat@orange-ftgroup.com