Management of physical

routes in transmission

networks

Physical Route Manager (PRM) is an extension to the Physical Network Inventory application. PRM allows grouping of any number of physical resources into an easily accessible and manageable entity called Route. Route consists of mutually related elements, such as, fibres, ports, and splices that comprises a connection between two locations.

Routes facilitate modelling utilization of physical resources for data transmission services and fiber/pairs lease.

Main features

  • Modelling point-to-point connections in fiber and copper networks
  • Automatic search for optical routes
  • Support in network planning, resource utilization and outage management processes
  • Management of measurement data
  • Representation of transmission links corresponding to facilities in Logical Network Inventory
  • Integration with Optical Network Atlas

PRM in Network Inventory Gateway

PRM is available via Network Inventory Gateway (PNI thin client). Physical Route Manager extension presents PRM elements in thin web client in a similar way as thick Physical Network Inventory client does, using the same naming conventions or color schemes. Web client significantly simplifies and improves third parties’ or field technicians’ data access. Routes are held in Smallworld database and managed by PRM application.

Benefits

 Increasing productivity and lowering error rates:

  • Rich graphical representation of designed issues
  • Highly optimized network tracing
  • Automate route building based on existing connectivity

 Easier outages handling:

  • Instant information about issues affected by the outage

Lowering time to market:

  • Instant implementation notes for field engineers
  • On-the-fly access to information about occupancy of PNI resources

 Lowering cost of keeping PNI network up to date:

  • Automatic creation of the PNI connectivity on Issue activation
  • Protecting issues from accidental damage

Planning of network topology and connectivity is one of the main tasks performed by engineers. New trunks within a network are created in advance in order to lower the cost of field works. Such pre-connected links are ready to use for the providing of requested services. Physical Route Manager allows planning of new trunks based on free resources, provides connectivity information for field engineers and facilitates creation of as-build cross-connects in the PNI database. PRM can recognize the difference between the infrastructure route and the end-customer route, allowing different rules to be applied while the route is being created. The infrastructure routes are protected from being destroyed with connectivity placed by other routes. Routes are also a convenient place to plan and store network measurement data.
Autorouting allows the user to build parts of an optical route efficiently by searching for all possible paths connecting two locations, ODFs or even active devices over the optical network. It interactively provides the operator with a set of candidates, starting with direct optical paths connecting locations or devices, ending on routes, which may require reconfigurations in the optical network (e.g. changing physical connections inside optical splice closures or ODF racks). Evaluated candidates are presented as a cost-wise sorted list, where costs computation is based on several factors, such as: route length, number of splices in which network rearrangement should be made, start and end ODF relevance (e.g. by accessibility from active devices within location). Algorithms can be easily tuned up by simply setting all these weight factors for each customer individually. Three searching algorithms are provided:
Direct Path – searches for direct optical routes between two locations or devices without the need to make any changes in the optical network (e.g. changing physical connections in splice closures),
One Splice Crossing – searches for routes between two points, which require hard changes in the optical network to be made in exactly one splice.
Shortest Optical Path – searches for shortest optical routes between two locations; may propose more than one connectivity change in the network (ODF patching and splice crossings).
Autorouting makes creation of a large number of moderately complicated routes convenient and efficient. In more complicated cases, the network planning engineer can split creation of a route into phases and can use Autorouting several times to define route segments.
PRM supports connecting customers to a network. The network engineer can easily arrange more than one issue of a route. The route issues allow the engineer to plan different implementation of customer connection in respective time periods. The PRM interface ensures very efficient and convenient definition of routes. It provides flexible ways for defining and editing route elements. The routing process is supported by displaying information about branch cables, including destination locations with distances. The user can use two tracing methods. The first one is based on cables; the second one is based on the physical connectivity stored in the PNI. Ad-hoc check of free resources is available thanks to the Autorouting feature.
One of the most important benefits of using Physical Route Manager for network management is the ability to instantly view all routes affected by damage to a given site or cable. The operator can check which customers need to be informed and decide if high priority rerouting is necessary. By using Autorouting, alternative paths can be created immediately.
The Issues of the Route follow a lifecycle that corresponds to the statuses during the process of network planning and fulfillment. Routes in “reserved” and “active” statuses occupy associated resources that are unavailable for other routes. Routes of non consuming status like “in construction” or “planned” can share resources with other ones, thus allowing future network configuration planning

PNI/LNI integration
PRM is a Smallworld application closely integrated with Smallworld PNI/LNI installation. Route designs are done with the most up-to-date network data. The changes to issue status (activation, reorganization) can be instantly applied to PNI connectivity removing the need of the manual update of PNI data after field works have been completed. PRM can be also used to model physical implementation of the LNI facilities. It allows presentation of physical paths associated with the LNI facility. If Service Ports are associated to correct RME Ports, then creating representation of the existing facility can be done quickly.

Optical Network Atlas integration
Optical Network Atlas (ONA) is a PNI add-on module developed by Globema that enables generating printer-friendly schemes of the PNI optical network. ONA and PRM are integrated with each other by design. While ONA alone provides the ability to view network parts as a graph of logically connected resources, integration with PRM adds a possibility to visualize this network with all information about planned works. ONA and PRM complete each other and support the process of fibEer network planning and fulfilment. 

 
System requirements

Smallworld PNI 4.1 or 4.3
Optionally LNI 4.1, 4.1.1 or 4.3
Optionally Globema Optical Network Atlas (ONA) for ONA
integration funcionality

Physical Route Manager Demo (Video)

EXPLORE PNI EXTENSIONS
pni

Physical Network Inventory

GE Smallworld PNI

ona

Optical Network Atlas for PNI

prm

Physical Route Manager for PNI

ops

Optical Path Scheme for PNI

radio

Radio Network Inventory for PNI

catv

Cable TV Design for Smallworld PNI

service

Service Inventory for PNI & LNI

dqt

Data Quality Tool for Smallworld GIS

nims2

Network Inventory Maintenance Support