The Broadband Forum says it has begun work on a standards-making effort centered on optical network unit (ONU) authentication in virtualized networks.
TR-489 “Authentication of an ONU and selection of eOMCI or vOMCI” will offer system integrators, network operators, and equipment manufacturers a clear framework to accelerate fiber to the premises (FTTP) and related deployments, the organization asserts.
The organization notes that the ONU could be managed by an ONU Management Control Interface (OMCI) function embedded in the OLT (eOMCI) or virtualized in the Management Plane (vOMCI).
But if both the OLT and management plane attempt to manage the same ONU, unpredictable results can ensue.
“If the authentication process – and which part of the network is responsible for it – is not defined, it can result in inconsistent or even faulty network behavior,” said Ken Ko, managing director at Broadband Forum. “TR-489 will benefit all Broadband Forum Work Areas concerned with ONU authentication and management selection and continue to help the industry transition to open, virtualized networks.”
TR-489 will define the authentication architecture and requirements as well as identify the interfaces (including YANG modules) necessary to perform ONU authentication.
The work will cover the selection of whether the OMCI function is performed by the OLT or by a management entity in the operator’s network.
The selected authority will control, configure, and monitor the ONU to identify potential faults, collect and analyze performance data, and encrypt data.
The Broadband Forum notes that several credentials and procedures can be used to authenticate an ONU, including matching serial number, registration ID, or LOID.
The choice of authentication procedure will depend on operational procedures at the discretion of the operator.
“ONU authentication is a key component to enable the benefits of virtualizing functions from the physical architecture,” said Robert Peschi, senior product architect at Nokia and editor of Broadband Forum’s TR-489. “The project ensures seamless interoperable and multi-vendor networks, regardless of whether parts of the network are virtualized or not.”
The requirements specified by TR-489 will be reflected in TR-385 Issue 2 Amendment 1 (ITU-T PON YANG modules).