Cisco Systems® announces the availability of the Cisco® Mobile Wireless Fault Mediator (MWFM) 4.1 release which is part of the Mobile Wireless Center for Cisco Mobile Exchange suite of applications that complements the CiscoWorks LAN Management Solution (LMS) to provide end-to-end management of the Cisco Mobile Exchange. The Mobile Wireless Center for Cisco Mobile Exchange addresses the element-management requirements of mobile operators and provides fault and configuration capability as mobile operators transition their wireless service delivery networks from second-generation (2G) circuit-based traffic to 2.5G and third-generation (3G) IP-based services.
A typical IP-based mobile wireless network built around Cisco Mobile Exchange is represented in Figure 1, where the Cisco General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)/Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service (UMTS) solution helps enable mobile operators to provide packet data service to their wireless subscribers.
In this context, Cisco MWFM is a feature-rich, device-layer solution that provides alarm filtering and correlation of Cisco wireless support nodes such as the Cisco Mobile Wireless Router or the Cisco Packet Data Serving Node (PDSN), Gateway GPRS Support Node (GGSN), and their neighboring Cisco Catalyst® switches. Cisco MWFM uses complex mathematics to solve the change-monitoring problem, allowing network-management products such as a fault-related Manager of Manager to support networks that are experiencing the phenomenal growth imposed by the boom in mobile Internet traffic.
Figure 1. Mobile Wireless Center in a Cisco Mobile Exchange-Based UMTS/GPRS Network
The Cisco MWFM architecture is based on Micromuse Precision fault-management technologies, adapted to the Cisco Mobile Exchange environment.
Discovery and Topology
The Cisco MWFM discovery engine finds all Cisco Mobile Exchange nodes, such as Cisco PDSN, GGSN, or Cisco Content Service Gateway (CSG), capturing not only what is present, but also the port-to-port connectivity between devices on the Cisco Mobile Exchange network. This information is stored in a database designed to allow rapid storage, retrieval, and updating of data concerning connectivity between devices.
Cisco MWFM consistently provides an accurate logical representation of the network topology. Even as the network evolves, ongoing passive discovery detects when new Cisco Mobile Exchange devices are added and triggers a partial rediscovery of that portion of the network.
Cisco MWFM uses a policy-based management system where all aspects of the network are controlled and administered from a single point. This approach relies on active object classes (AOCs) to monitor network elements and define polling requirements. AOCs describe how to identify devices, determine connectivity, and monitor the devices for problems.
Cisco MWFM can perform aggregated polling, which consolidates polling requests for multiple applications, thereby minimizing the unnecessary use of network and device bandwidth. To further minimize unnecessary polling, Cisco MWFM uses caching technology to store the most recent device information. Standard polling methods include Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) ping and Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). Cisco MWFM monitoring also accepts SNMP traps and reads device syslog files.
For many service providers, the migration toward mobile Internet networks creates a unique management problem. Large investments in traditional systems must be taken advantage of while continuing the migration toward mobile wireless IP environments. In these mixed environments, the issue becomes how to transparently manage the mix of technologies while continuing to deliver the highest level of service availability. The flexible and open nature of Cisco MWFM provides effortless integration with popular fault Managers of Manager, such as the Cisco Information Center or HP OpenView.
A New Foundation
Designed as an application system within the Mobile Wireless Center for Cisco Mobile Exchange suite of applications, Cisco MWFM is uniquely capable of serving as the central fault-monitoring component at the element-management layer for Cisco Mobile Wireless solutions. For network administrators, this means less time spent writing rules and building intelligence into the network management system and significant gains in network availability. Figure 2 provides an example of the Cisco MWFM alarm console interface.
Figure 2. Cisco MWFM Alarm Console GUI
KEY FEATURES AND BENEFITS
Table 1 describes the benefits of the Cisco MWFM when deployed as part of an element management system (EMS) infrastructure.
Table 1. Features and Benefits of the Cisco MWFM
Cisco MWFM Feature
• Automatically discovers Cisco mobile wireless-device network connections and changes, while monitoring element status, including neighboring Cisco Catalyst switches
• Provides a near real-time model of the Cisco wireless network
• Eliminates manual update of network inventory
Complex Alarm Gathering Mechanism
• SNMP traps
• MIB threshold violation
• ICMP polling
• Syslog messages
• No additional configuration needed in the device
• Monitors key metrics in a preventive fashion and alerts network management system (NMS) before condition negatively impacts the network performance
• Ensures that devices are available
Multiple NMS Support
• Alarms can be forwarded to multiple NMSs based on user-defined attributes
• Allows a flexible integration with the ISP's network operations center (NOC) architecture
Robust Transport Trap Mechanism
• New trap field with unique and sequential ID number
• Allows traditional OSS to retrieve any missed alarms
• Alarms can be filtered by alarm severity, device type, or alarm field
• Empowers users to receive only the alarms that interest them and hide the remaining ones from view
• Alarm de-duplication
• Reachability and device-level correlation, including Hot Standby Routing Protocol (HSRP) support
• Prevents users from being overflowed, particularly during alarm storms
• Provides the probable root cause of alarms to the user, eliminating the guesswork of troubleshooting network outage
Integration with Cisco OSS and Fault Manager of Manager
• Powerful query mechanism provides a synchronization facility with traditional OSS
• Provides a standard Java API, and automates configuration and alarm synchronization between Cisco MWFM and OSS
• In case of missed alarms or OSS crashing, users can retrieve list of all active alarms through a Java API synchronization mechanism
CiscoWorks LMS-Based GUI
• User-friendly GUI that displays active alarm view window; operators can double- click on a row for a detailed view of trap
• Significantly reduces time to deployment with ready-to-use GUI
AOC Policy Manager
• Configuration GUI that allow user to define rule sets
• Removes the complexity of modifying default correlation rules with a graphical interface
Enhanced Configuration Tool
• Operators define discovery scope and other network parameters intuitively with new configuration
• Eliminates installation configuration complexity and accelerates the time to monitor the network so downtime can be minimized
• GUI and Java API tool to indicate health of the different Cisco MWFM processes
• Provides an early warning system so technical support team can proactively troubleshoot Cisco MWFM
Trap Multiplexer Mechanism
• Operators can set Cisco MWFM to forward, as is, all traps received from the devices to the NMS
• Operators can choose to analyze device alarms without the correlation applied
• SNMP Version 1 (SNMPv1) traps
• Cisco MWFM traps are forwarded to OSS based on SNMP standard
Cisco MWFM supports the following Cisco Mobile Exchange devices (Table 2).
Table 2. Supported Cisco Mobile Exchange Devices
Cisco IOS® Software Release
Cisco PDSN 2.1
12.3(11)YF or later
Cisco 7206 Router or Cisco 6500/7600 Series Multiprocessor WAN Application Module (MWAM)
Cisco Home Agent 2.0
12.3(11)YF or later
Cisco 7206 or MWAM
Cisco GGSN 5.0
12.3(8)XU3 or later
Cisco 7206 or MWAM
Cisco GGSN 5.1
12.3(11)YJ or later
Cisco 7206 or MWAM
Cisco Service Selection Gateway (SSG) 1.2
12.3(11)T4 or later
Cisco 7206 or MWAM
Cisco CSG 5.3
Cisco CSG 5.4
Cisco CSG 5.5 and Later 5.x
Predefined Correlation Rules
• Alarm de-duplication
• Root-alarm determination
• Cisco Mobile Exchange Correlation Rules
• SNMPv1 trap format
• X.733 alarm severity Format
Tables 3 and 4 list the system and client requirements for Cisco MWFM.
• At least a 1-GHz single CPU running Windows Professional, or Windows XP
• Sun UltraSPARC IIIi, single 1-GHz CPU or equivalent
• Windows: Internet Explorer 6.0 SP1, Mozilla 1.7
• Solaris: Mozilla 1.7
Available Disk Space
• Sun Solaris 2.9
• Windows XP, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows Server 2003
Space equal to twice the amount of memory (RAM)
Java Runtime Environment (JRE)
Java Plug-in version 1.4.2_04
The Cisco Mobile Wireless Fault Mediator 4.1 and related upgrade for Cisco Mobile Wireless Fault Mediator 3.3 customers are available for purchase through regular Cisco sales and distribution channels worldwide. To place an order, visit the Cisco Ordering Home Page.
SERVICE AND SUPPORT
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