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Cisco Subscriber Registration Center Device Provisioning Registrar

Cisco Subscriber Registration Center

Table Of Contents

Q & A


Q & A


Cisco Subscriber Registration Center
Device Provisioning Registrar 2.0

Q. What technologies does CSRC DPR 2.0 support?

A. Cisco Subscriber Registration Center Device Provisioning Registrar (CSRC DPR) 2.0 is the first of the CSRC 2.0 family of provisioning software products. CSRC DPR 2.0 introduces the CSRC Provisioning Application Programming Interface (API), which is a Java-based API designed specifically for integration with billing, customer care, and mediation systems. The focus of CSRC DPR 2.0 is provisioning "CableLabs-certified" devices, which adhere to the Data-over-Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS) 1.0 standard and also digital set-top boxes (DSTBs) that adhere to the Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB) standard. CSRC DPR 2.0 also provisions subscriber devices behind the network devices, such as personal computers, and supports certain DOCSIS 1.0+ features. In particular, CSRC DPR 2.0 can provision call agents that adhere to the Simple Gateway Control Protocol (SGCP) standard. This allows service providers to provide residential voice over IP (RVoIP) services, based on SGCP, to their subscribers.

Q. What are the components of CSRC DPR 2.0?

A. To support provisioning CableLabs-certified devices that adhere to the DOCSIS 1.0 standard, CSRC DPR 2.0 includes Cisco Network Registrar (CNR), which provides high-performance Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), Domain Name System (DNS), and Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP) software servers. CSRC DPR 2.0 also requires a Lightweight Delivery Access Protocol (LDAP)v3-compliant directory server. Because Cisco does not sell LDAP directory-server software, customers are responsible for selecting and obtaining this required component of CSRC DPR 2.0 by themselves. Although CNR can be purchased separately, customers are encouraged to purchase CSRC DPR 2.0 directly, including the appropriate version of CNR for CSRC DPR 2.0.

Q. What version of CNR does CSRC DPR 2.0 require?

A. CSRC DPR 2.0 includes CNR 5.0.5. Customers who are using earlier versions of CNR and who would like to migrate to CSRC DPR 2.0 must first upgrade to the version of CNR that is required by CSRC DPR 2.0.

Q. How does CSRC DPR 2.0 integrate with billing systems, customer-care systems, and mediation systems?

A. Customers and their integration partners should use the Java-based CSRC Provisioning API for this purpose. Although CNR is a tremendously successful, powerful, and flexible product, the CSRC Family of products takes full advantage of the flexibility and extensibility of CNR. In addition, the CSRC Family of products can send certain commands related to provisioning directly to the CableLabs-certified modems under management using specific Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) commands. This feature, as well as all the other features provided by CSRC, is accessible through the CSRC Provisioning API, which provides service-provider customers tremendous flexibility in implementing workflow models and integrating with the billing, customer-care, and mediation systems of their choice.

Q. What version of the Java Developers' Kit (JDK) will I need in order to use the CSRC Provisioning API?

A. Customers or their integration partners will need to use JDK 1.3.

Q. On which operating environments is CSRC DPR 2.0 supported?

A. CSRC DPR 2.0 is supported on Sun SPARC Solaris 2.6, 7, and 8 and Microsoft Windows NT 4 (on Intel). See the CSRC DPR Installation Guide for more details.

Q. Will CSRC DPR 2.0 run on Windows 2000?

A. CSRC DPR 2.0 is not qualified on Windows 2000.

Q. What about a minimal lab configuration?

A. At least two workstations are recommended for a minimal lab configuration. The CSRC DPR Installation Guide discusses the recommended configuration. For more information, please see the CSRC DPR 2.0 deployment white paper for lab configurations and deployment scenarios. This paper is available through local Cisco field sales offices.

Q. How do we design a redundant CSRC DPR 2.0 installation?

A. CSRC DPR 2.0 provides high availability of DHCP through industry-leading implementation of DHCP fail-over on the CNR/DHCP module. Redundant architectures are discussed in the CSRC DPR 2.0 deployment white paper. This paper is available through local Cisco field sales offices.

Q. What areas of performance should I be investigating for my deployment?

A. The function of CSRC DPR 2.0 is to provision edge devices. In particular, CSRC DPR 2.0 allocates IP addresses and, for DOCSIS modems/routers, sends the DOCSIS configuration file to the device. Therefore, the operational performance of CSRC DPR 2.0 is most dependent on the performance of the DHCP and TFTP servers used to allocate these addresses and send the DOCSIS configuration files. The embedded CNR 5.0 included in CSRC DPR excels in these areas—raw DHCP performance exceeds 1200 leases per second, and TFTP performance has been shown to offer twice the performance of shareware TFTP servers. The characteristics of the hardware servers on which these software services run will determine the actual performance of the provisioning system.

The parameters that affect the performance of the provisioning system DHCP subsystem that are most often overlooked are the DHCP lease time of the modem/router and the DHCP lease time of the subscribers' computer(s). Customers are encouraged to select a DHCP lease time that is as long as possible. With respect to the hardware on which the CSRC DPR 2.0 components run, the first bottleneck is most likely to be observed on the LDAPv3 directory server. CSRC DPR 2.0 deployments where the hardware on which the LDAPv3 directory server runs is the largest hardware platform of the CSRC DPR 2.0 installation are common. More information on deploying CSRC DPR 2.0 is available in the deployment white paper, which is available through local Cisco field sales offices.

Q. What hardware platform(s) are recommended?

A. Both the number of IP addresses under management, "devices," and the DHCP lease times ("one" DHCP lease time for the modems/routers and, potentially, "another" DHCP lease time for subscribers' computers) will determine the "steady-state" load on the DHCP subsystem of CSRC. Large-scale production environments should consider at least dual-processor systems. External drive arrays with high-performance input/output (I/O) cards should be considered if an installation requires three or more processors. Because the LDAPv3 server is in the critical path of the provisioning system, the hardware platform on which the LDAPv3 server runs may need to be "larger" than the hardware platform of the other CSRC DPR 2.0 components. These topics are also included in the CSRC DPR 2.0 deployment white paper, which is available through local Cisco field sales offices.

Q. How should customers scale the CSRC DPR 2.0 solution?

A. As a service provider's subscriber base grows, it will be important to monitor the load on all the CSRC DPR 2.0 systems. CSRC DPR 2.0 is qualified to scale to 250,000 devices under management. As customers approach 250,000 nodes in one CSRC DPR 2.0 installation, they should consider migrating to CSRC Broadband Provisioning Registrar (BPR) 2.0, the other product in the CSRC 2.0 Family. Another option is to begin a separate instance of CSRC to support an an additional 250,000 devices.

Q. I'm running CNR today. How do I get to CSRC DPR 2.0?

A. A migration tool is available to assist customers who use CNR alone to migrate to CSRC DPR 2.0. If customers are not running a version of CNR that has been qualified with CSRC DPR 2.0, they will need to upgrade to that version of CNR first. The migration tool is available through local Cisco field sales offices.

Q. I'm running CSRC 1.0 today. How do I get to CSRC DPR 2.0?

A. A migration tool is available to help current CSRC 1.0 customers to migrate to CSRC DPR 2.0. The migration tool is available through local Cisco field sales offices.

Q. Is there a recommended LDAPv3 directory server?

A. CSRC DPR 2.0 requires an LDAP v3-compliant directory server. CSRC DPR 2.0 was tested most extensively with iPlanet Directory Server Version 4.13 and OpenLDAP Version 2.07. Cisco recommends that customers consider one of those LDAP directory servers. In CSRC DPR 2.0, the performance of the DHCP system will be limited by the performance of the LDAP subsystem. Customers are strongly advised to design this part of their provisioning system for very high performance.

Q. Can I integrate CSRC DPR 2.0 with my existing LDAP?

A. As long as the directory server is LDAPv3 compliant, yes. Customers who would like to do this will be required to use the CSRC DPR 2.0 LDAP schema in their existing LDAP server. Note that CSRC DPR 2.0 will generate a certain amount of load on any LDAP server, and there are certain latency requirements between the CSRC DPR 2.0 components and the LDAP server. These latency requirements must be met for CSRC DPR 2.0 to function properly. Customers who would like to use their existing LDAPv3-compliant directory server are urged to carefully review the CSRC DPR 2.0 deployment white paper and pay particular attention to the architecture of the LDAP subsystem of CSRC DPR 2.0.

Q. What billing, customer-care, and mediation systems are integrating with CSRC DPR 2.0?

A. Because of the tremendous interest, please contact the product manager or your local Cisco field sales office for the latest list.

Q. Which integration partners have been qualified to work with CSRC DPR 2.0?'

A. Because of the tremendous interest, please contact the product manager or your local Cisco field sales office for the latest list.

Q. What CMTSs work with CSRC?

A. Any CableLabs-qualified CMTS should work with CSRC DPR 2.0. However, extensive testing has been performed with only the Cisco Universal Broadband Router Series of cable modem termination system (CMTS) and wireless modem termination system (WMTS) hardware.

Q. What tools are available to help create DOCSIS configuration files?

A. Customers can download the Cisco DOCSIS CPE Configurator software tool from the Software Center at Cisco.com from the following URL (a Cisco.com login is required): http://www.cisco.com/public/sw-center/sw-cable.html

Q. Can CSRC DPR 2.0 support cable, digital subscriber line (DSL), and HomePNA provisioning?

A. The CSRC 2.0 releases (CSRC DPR 2.0 and CSRC BPR 2.0) will provision modems that are CableLabs (DOCSIS) certified or that adhere to the DVB standard only. Future releases of CSRC may broaden the types of broadband technologies that CSRC can provision.

Q. Where can I find more information?

A. For more information, please see the product documentation, which is available on Cisco.com: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/sw/netmgtsw/ps2181/index.html

Local Cisco field sales offices will be able to answer further questions on any Cisco product, including CSRC DPR 2.0.

The following questions relate to the differences between CSRC 1.0 and CSRC DPR 2.0.

Q. Does CSRC DPR 2.0 contain a graphical user interface (GUI)?

A. No. The CSRC 1.0 product included a module called User Registrar (UR), which included a Web server. Neither member of the CSRC 2.0 family of products includes Web servers. However, all the capabilities provided by UR are accessible through the CSRC Provisioning API. A Web server provided by a billing, customer-care, or mediation system, for example, will be able to integrate with CSRC 2.0 products through the Java-based CSRC Provisioning API. Through the CSRC Provisioning API, this Web application will be able to deliver the same capabilities as the CSRC 1.0 UR Module.

Q. Is there an analog to Modem Registrar?

A. The CSRC 1.0 product included a module called Modem Registrar (MR), which dynamically generated DOCSIS configuration files for the CableLabs-certified modems. CSRC DPR 2.0 does not include the capability to dynamically generate the DOCSIS configuration files. Instead, customers must create the DOCSIS configuration files themselves.

Q. We enjoy the benefits of dynamically generated DOCSIS configuration files today. What should we do?

A. The CSRC DPR 2.0 product does not dynamically generate DOCSIS configuration files. Another member of the CSRC 2.0 Family of products will have the capability to dynamically generate DOCSIS configuration files. Because the CSRC Provisioning API will be "upwardly compatible" (meaning that all features provided by the Provisioning API in CSRC DPR 2.0 will be supported by the other members of the CSRC 2.0 family), even customers who require dynamically generated DOCSIS configuration files may want to consider CSRC DPR 2.0 for their lab environments. This will allow them to begin integrating their billing, customer-care, or mediation systems to the CSRC Provisioning API to prepare themselves for the other members of the CSRC 2.0 family.