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Ethernet Switches & Routers

Occasional Contributor
Posts: 43
Registered: ‎08-20-2010

Provider Backbone Bridging for Service Transport

It isn't exactly news to anyone that service providers are increasingly required to carry way more content and services over VLANs than ever before. Basically, there are more customers wanting more services today than there were yesterday, and don't even ask about tomorrow. In order to increase support of additional customers while maintaining high SLA's, service providers require a solution that partitions individual customer traffic. Standard based provider backbone bridging (PBB), a layer two technology which Brocade has introduced in the 5.3 software release for the NetIron platforms, is designed for the metro core and aggregation networks and can simplify the operation of your network.  PBB provides a clear and strong demarcation between the customer and service provider networks at the metro edge.

PBB is a set of architecture and protocols for routing over a provider's network allowing interconnection of multiple provider bridge networks, and offers signficantly more scalability than provider bridging. The primary benefit of this feature is that it can support over 16 million customers, using a 24-bit service instance identifier (I-SID), as opposed to provider bridging that only supports up to four thousand customers using a 12-bit SVID. PBB duplicates the MAC layer of the customer packet and keeps it separate from the provider domain, creating an infrastructure that is transparent from a customer network. The I-SID instances also simplify management and billing by cleanly separating the customer from the provider network.

For interconnection of inter- and intra-regional data centers, PBB helps simplify provisioning, making it easy to configure and scale VLANs from one data center to another.  This is ideal for service providers looking to deliver cloud services to their customers or de-duplication through Ethernet.   The diagram below shows how PBB can be used to interconnect multiple data centers.


Check back later, when I'll tell you about some of the new management and system features in the 5.3 release that will further simplify your network operations.

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