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Case Studies

Real World Management


Telecommunication service providers often need to operate large distributed data networks which can provide up-to-date customer and market information to the internal corporate desktop as well as external affiliated organisations.

Telstra is the leading provider of fixed and mobile telephony services in Australia. Telstra's Network Technology Group (NTG) is responsible for 24x7 operation of the Australian service provider's corporate data network, which serves both internal Telstra staff and in-house contractors. The substantial infrastructure investment behind this modern communications network demands a highly effective monitoring and management environment to assure service continuation and quality.

Telstra has selected Willhart's award-winning Mediator™ IP Gateway Service Gateway to uniformly manage LAN and computer room facilities and network support infrastructure across the country. The Mediator™ IP Gateway provides continuous monitoring of the LAN/computer facilities for:

  • Temperature & Humidity Monitoring
  • UPS Operation Status
  • Mains Power Failure

"Our organisation has made a substantial investment in the past 5 years in the deployment of a unified data network management system. The Mediator™ IP Gateway allows us to standardise the management of computer facilities by linking remote system alarms into our HP OpenView™ management platform", asserts the Telstra National Manager for IT Network Infrastructure, David Odgaard.

Network operations staff can remotely monitor and control the remote facilities as the Mediator™ IP Gateway detects and reports environmental changes inside the facility. Problems such as overheating due to the failure of an air conditioning unit are reported on a real-time basis to the OpenView console residing at Telstra central network operations. Remote procedures are then activated to prevent any costly damage to the data communications equipment.

Telstra's customer service focus and size of operations have resulted in several innovations introduced into the Mediator™ IP Gateway service environment. One particular feature enables the gateway to execute local business rules or instructions to respond to equipment conditions. This occurs when the WAN link is not functioning, allowing the Mediator™ IP Gateway to reference site-specific embedded business rules. Should an alarm be generated, the Mediator™ IP Gateway will provide remedial action by initiating a controlled server shutdown procedure or trip the emergency power switch in the event of extreme emergencies.

The Mediator™ IP Gateway application in Telstra extends to an End-to-End Systems Management function. Alarm integration is provided into the BMC Command/Post platform serving as the enterprise-wide alarm manager. This integration allows alarms to be passed to the appropriate system automatically and remedial actions undertaken rapidly. This may include paging service technicians or electricians if a failure is detected and cannot be resolved remotely.

According to Telstra's Odgaard, "We seek to deploy management technologies that leverage the existing infrastructure investment and provide a consistent interface that can be monitored remotely from the central SNMP console(s). With the Mediator™ IP Gateway system we are able to assign specific device thresholds that suit the specifics of each computer facility without a need for custom software.

This is a great advantage from the point of having a single global console that can monitor all the regional sites."

Technology investment decisions are based more and more on financial analyses identifying rate of Return on Investment (ROI) and total payback estimates. Telstra conducted an extensive evaluation of the Mediator's benefits before adopting the technology for its national remote management requirements. Telstra has been able to identify a payback period of less than 18 months for the Mediator™ IP Gateway project. As Telstra focuses on the challenges of a competitive market and the technology shift to IP based services, it can be certain that the Mediator™ IP Gateway provides an enterprise solution for infrastructure management while offering flexibility to adapt to the demands of a service driven network.

Management Platform Integration

The Mediator™ IP Gateway is supported on the following SNMP Network Management Platforms:

  • CA Unicenter TNG™
  • BMC Patrol & Command/Post™
  • HP OpenView™
  • Cabletron SPECTRUM™
  • Tivoli™ and NetView™

The Mediator™ IP Gateway provides an integrated network management approach. The Mediator™ IP Gateway agent runs on the SNMP management system and makes use of the platform's inherent monitoring tools to present a graphical view of the disparate network elements.

This solution architecture provides a fully integrated disparate element management architecture that can leverage the organisation's investment in Enterprise class network management software.

Supported Device Interfaces:

  • Contact Closure
  • Digital/Analogue/TTL
  • RS232/RS485
  • Connection to vendor element manager systems via LAN, WAN and point to point secure dialup interfaces

All registered and unregistered trademarks are the sole property of their respective companies. The information contained in this document is subject to change without notice. This document will be updated periodically to reflect additions, enhancements and other changes in the Mediator™ IP Gateway product family.

Telco Legacy Management

Queensland Rail

Operating a modern state-wide railway system requires the day-to-day management of a complex infrastructure dealing with thousands of kilometres of tracks, roads and geographically dispersed signaling and communications equipment.

For Queensland Rail (QR) corporation, the challenge is about improving the efficiency of its vast telecommunications network through the introduction of a modern, centrally managed Telecommunications Network Management System (TNMS). QR needed to achieve measurable improvements in managing instruments, processes and human resources while maintaining tight budgetary controls on systems expenditure. QR's core business is about continuously delivering a quality transport service while searching for ways to minimise maintenance costs and to improve response time to system failures.

After extensive evaluation, QR selected a casestudy/server SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) management platform to oversee the operations of its highly distributed Transmission, Signaling and Bandwidth Management equipment across Queensland. A key component of the overall system related to the implementation of a standard network interface to the various telemetry and telecommunications supervisory systems. This interface was required to receive and interpret signals from diverse equipment while translating and forwarding SNMP alarms to the enterprise class management system.

QR selected Willhart's award winning Mediator™ IP Gateway network management gateway to provide a uniform data collection mechanism capable of closely interfacing with the central management software.

For QR's TNMS Operations staff in Brisbane, the biggest need was to remotely access a range of telecom supervisory systems in real-time. "We needed to quickly rationalise our network operations by centrally monitoring and controlling our remote switching systems," QR-TNMS casestudy Manager stated.

The QR operations team expects to see savings in the next several years through the deployment of the Mediator™ IP Gateway units to standardise and simplify access to a range of telemetry and complex switching systems.

The Mediator™ IP Gateway is designed to substantially drive down expenses associated with interfacing disparate and non-network standard devices. In order for QR to fully realise the cost benefits of its investment in the technology, the configurable Mediator™ IP Gateway software agent was installed in each unit to provide management of switching and telemetry interfaces without the need for a site by site customisation of the serial switch interfaces.

The Mediator™ IP Gateway software environment presents a framework for the deployment of SNMP-compliant device agents to deal with transmission, telemetry and bandwidth management systems. The differentiator for QR is the ability to collect and process critical device information and forward it to the central management facility using the existing corporate Wide Area Network (WAN). The Mediator™ IP Gateway solution is therefore well adapted to service the requirement of QR's operations and business management staff.

The movement of information and on-line access to mission critical systems is crucial to the state transport organisation's plans to expand and manage its extensive network while moving from a high fixed-cost structure, attributable to high labour network while moving from a high capital-cost, to a variable-cost management structure.

The list of devices interfaced to the Mediator™ IP Gateway serial RS232 ports at the regional sites includes:

  • GPT-Plessey Telemetry Systems
  • Philips Telemetry Systems
  • MEGADATA Power Supervisory Systems
  • NORTEL Meridian PBX/PABX1s
  • NEC Digital Supervisory Systems
  • Infotron Bandwidth Managers
  • NOKIA 2000 Digital Microwave Radio
  • MITEC Minilinks
  • Passenger Information Display Systems
  • Centralised Traffic Control Systems
  • GPT-Plessey Analogue MicrowaveRadio
  • SEPAC - ATR Trunk Radio System

The on-going modernisation at the State level will position QR-TNMS as a leading implementation of an integrated enterprisewide manager dealing with switching, telemetry and management applications. The solution comprises an intelligent network element management system and a pro-active SNMP alarm reporting and service restoration application platform fully integrated through the Mediator™ IP Gateway management gateway.

Mediator™ IP Gateway can fully support the following Network Management Platforms:

  • CA Unicenter TNG™
  • BMC Patrol™ & Command/Post™
  • Sun Solstice Enterprise Manager™
  • HP OpenView™
  • Cabletron SPECTRUM™
  • Tivoli™ and NetView™

Supported Device Interfaces:

  • Contact Closure
  • Digital/Analogue/TTL
  • RS232 & RS485
  • Connection to vendor element manager systems via LAN, WAN and point to point interfaces

All registered and unregistered trademarks are the sole property of their respective companies. The information contained in this document is subject to change without notice. This document will be updated periodically to reflect additions, enhancements and other changes in the Mediator™ IP Gateway product family.