Low-Cost Implementation of Ethernet-based Services over CATV Interconnect Networks (1998)

By Robert W. Harris, ADC Broadband Communications and Michael Coden, ADC Codenoll

A low cost solution for implementing Fast Ethernet data transport over local backbone and long distance regional CATV networks is presented. The approach allows switching and transmission of standard Ethernet and Fast Ethernet data in its native mode over any size ring network with no limitation to distance. Furthermore, this method is independent of both data format and protocol allowing service providers to deliver fully transparent Ethernetbased services to their customers. This approach, in effect, extends the functionality and low cost of the local area network (LAN) into the Wide Area Network (WAN). This paper describes the theory of operation of a new “ring-based” Fast Ethernet switch and transport solution known as EtherRingä. Implementation of EtherRing in cable data modem applications is presented as an alternative to current data transport solutions. EtherRing makes use of the data networking concept known as “Route Once-Switch Many” and is extended into the CATV network environment as a method for centralizing network routers. This solution, when used in conjunction with EtherRing transport technology, is shown to provide a highly scaleable and efficient approach to data modem service delivery resulting in network cost savings between 50% to 80% over alternative data transport methods. Additional CATV data transport applications are presented including; advertisement insertion transport, set-top box access and control transport and general purpose LAN service delivery.

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