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Lecture notes

Switching Systems by Jorma Kekalainen

Switching Systems
Jorma Kekalainen

Switching Systems
Introduction

Introduction and network evolution

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Lecture notes

Switching Systems by Jorma Kekalainen

Goals of the course


Understand principal concepts of switching
systems
the basic structure and functions of a switching
system
the role of a switching system in a transport
network

Course outline

Introduction to switching
Transport and switching
Switch fabrics
Switch implementations
Optical switching

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Lecture notes

Switching Systems by Jorma Kekalainen

Sources
1.

Usually, the most precise sources are the original


sources, i.e. standards, recommendations or other
specifications.
You can pull them from the Internet e.g.
ITU-T www.itu.int/ITU-T/
IETF www.ietf.org
3GPP www.3gpp.org
or from elsewhere.

2. You can look for material from corresponding


courses using some search engine
3. Some may find that the books are easier to read.
4. Lecture notes are sufficient to pass the course.
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Books
Ericsson & Telia, Understanding Telecommunications 1
Hui, Switching and traffic theory for integrated broadband
networks
Freeman, Telecommunication System Engineering.
Chao, Lam and Oki, Broadband Packet Switching Technologies
A Practical Guide to ATM Switches and IP routers
Penman, Interconnections: Bridges, Routers, Switches and
Internetworking Protocols
Stern, Bala, Multiwavelength Optical Networks: A Layered
Approach
Davie, Doolan and Rekhter, Switching in IP networks

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Motivation
Switches allow reduction in overall network cost by
reducing number and cost of transmission links
Limited number of physical connections implies need
for sharing of transport resources, which means
better utilization of transport capacity
use of switching

Switching systems are central components in


communications networks

History of switching
Manual systems
manually operated switching equipment (the first one in
1878)

Electromechanical systems
manual exchanges were replaced by electromechanical
switching systems
a patent for automated telephone exchange in 1889
more efficient routing of traffic through transmission
network
increased traffic capacity at lower cost

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Modern times
1950-2000
Computer-controlled and fully electronic switching systems
The first computer controlled exchange put into service in 1960
1ESS (Electronic Switching System)
Packet switching and routers

N-ISDN network combined telephone exchange and packet data


switches
Cell switching (ATM) formed basis for B-ISDN
Label switching (MPLS)
Optical switching
optical switching with electronic switch control
all optical switching in the horizon

Development of switching technologies

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Introduction and network evolution

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Lecture notes

Switching Systems by Jorma Kekalainen

History of switching

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End-Office evolution
Switching
System

Operation

Method of
Switching

Type of Control

1878 manual
operator

manual

space/analog

1892 step-by-step

electromechanical

space/analog

distributed stageby-stage

1918 cross-bar

electromechanical

space/analog

common control

1960 ESS - first


generation

semielectronic

space/analog

common control

1972 ESS second


generation

electronic

space/analog

stored program
control

1976 ESS - third


generation

electronic

time/digital

stored program
common
control

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The Hierarchy of Telecom Switching Systems

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Public Circuit Switched Network

A private branch exchange (PBX) is a telephone exchange that serves a particular


business or office, as opposed to one that a common carrier or telephone company. PBXs
are also referred to as: PABX - private automatic branch exchange

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Telecom Components
Subscriber
Devices attached to network

Subscriber line
Link between subscriber and network
Also called Local Loop or Subscriber Loop

Range from few km up to tens of km

Exchange
Switching center in the network
End office specific switching center that supports
subscribers

Trunks
Branches between exchanges
Multiplexed
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Circuit Establishment

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Switched network
For transmission of data beyond a local area,
communication is typically achieved by transmitting
data from source to destination through a series of
interlinked nodes, called switches.
Switching nodes will move the data from node to node
until they reach their destination.
The end devices that wish to communicate may be
referred to as stations or hosts.
The stations may be computers, telephones, or other
communicating devices.
The nodes are connected to one another in some
topology by transmission links.
Each station attaches to a node, and the collection of
switched nodes is referred to as a switched network.
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Switched network

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Switched network

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Alternative topologies
Whenever we have multiple devices, we have the problem of how
to connect them to make one-to-one communication possible.
We can make a point-to-point connection
between each pair of devices (a mesh topology) or
between a central device and every other device (a star
topology).
These methods are impractical and wasteful when applied to
very large networks.
the links require too much infrastructure and
the majority of those links would be idle most of the time.
not cost-effective
Other topologies employing multipoint connections, such as a
bus, are ruled out because the distances between devices and
the total number of devices increase beyond the capacities of
the media and equipment.
A better solution is switching.
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Example: Full mesh networks


Each terminal directly
connects to every other
terminal
Uneconomical: Large
number N(N-1) of
poorly utilized
connections

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Example: Broadcast and select networks

Each terminal connects to a


common shared medium.
Sources broadcast information.
Destinations select appropriate
information.
Poor scalability: Shared medium
is a bottleneck.
As the number of nodes
increases transmission time
spent arbitrating access (e.g.
Ethernet collisions) also
increases
Poor security: Information is
visible to all nodes.
Poor reliability: Single failure
point.

or

A system whose performance improves after adding hardware,


proportionally to the capacity added, is said to be a scalable system.

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Example: Switched networks


Most traffic is
directed (broadcast=bad) and
bursty (mesh=bad)

Switches
Forward traffic only towards its
destination(s)
Multiplex traffic from multiple sources

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Switched networks
Advantages
Economical for large
scale
Smaller collision
domains:

Objections
Switches cost
Switches may get congested
or block
Switches introduce delay

less time spent


arbitrating access

Relative secure
Reliable e.g. choice of
path
Simple to upgrade
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Lecture notes

Switching Systems by Jorma Kekalainen

Definition of switch
Switch: Any device with multiple ports that direct
traffic only to one output port that leads to the
destination.
Note1: Router: A switch that uses network layer (e.g. IP)
headers to decide which port to forward packets on.
Note2: ITU-T specification for switching:
The establishing, on-demand, of an individual connection
from a desired inlet to a desired outlet within a set of
inlets and outlets for as long as is required for the
transfer of information.
Note3:
Ports are also known as interfaces.
inlet/outlet = a line or a channel
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Switches
Switches are devices capable of creating
temporary connections between two or more
devices linked to the switch.
In a switched network, some of these nodes
are connected to the end systems (computers
or telephones).
Others are used only for routing.
Data can be switched on bit, octet, frame,
packet or message level

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Examples of switching
Electronic switching
Computer network
Telephone network

Non-electronic switching
Vehicular traffic
railway switching yards
automotive traffic (lane
switching)

Irrigation systems
Utility networks (water,
sewerage. electricity,
gas ...)

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Example: Full connectivity between


stations

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Example: Centralized switching

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Example: Switching network to connect


hosts

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Example: Hierarchy of switching networks

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Heterogeneity by switching
Switching systems allow heterogeneity among
terminals and transmission links by providing a
variety of interface types

various data rates


different link layer framing
optical and electrical interfaces
various line codes

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Heterogeneity by switching

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Types of switching networks (1)


Statically switched networks
connections established for longer periods of time (typically
for months or years)
management system used for connection manipulation

Dynamically switched networks


connections established for short periods of time (typically
from seconds to tens of minutes)
active signaling needed to manipulate connections

Routing networks
no connections established - no signaling
each data unit routed individually through a network
routing decision made dynamically or statically

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Types of switching networks (2)


We can divide networks into three broad categories:
circuit-switched, packet-switched and messageswitched networks.
Packet-switched networks can further be divided into
two subcategories datagram networks and virtualcircuit networks.
The virtual-circuit networks have some common
characteristics with circuit-switched and datagram
networks.

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Taxonomy of switched networks

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Packet and message switching


In packet switching station breaks long message into
packets
Packets are sent one at a time to the network
Packets are handled in two ways
Datagram
Virtual circuit

In message switching, each switch stores the whole


message and forwards it to the next switch.
Packet switching has replaced message switching in
general communications.

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Circuit Switching
Originated in public telephone networks
Well suited to both analog and digital transmission of
voice signal, but can also handle digital data
A dedicated path is established between two stations
for communication
Three phases: establish, transfer, disconnect
The connection is transparent:
Once it is established, it appears to attached devices as if there
were a direct connection

Network must have switching capacity and channel


capacity to establish connection
Network must have intelligence to work out routing
In circuit switching, a direct physical connection
between two devices is created by space-division
switches, time-division switches, or both.
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Introduction and network evolution

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Space- and time division switch


In a space-division switch, the path from one device
to another is spatially separate from other paths.
A crossbar is the most common space-division switch.
It connects n inputs to m outputs via n m
crosspoints.
Multistage switches can reduce the number of
crosspoints needed, but blocking may result.
Blocking occurs when not every input has its own
unique path to every output.
In a time-division switch, the inputs are divided in
time, using TDM.
A control unit sends the input to the correct output
device.
A TDM buses are simple time-division switches.
Space- and time-division switches may be combined.

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Telephone network

Smart Network

Dumb Terminals

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Packet Switching: Basic Operation


Data transmitted in small packets
Typically 1000 octets (8 bit byte)
Longer messages split into series of packets
Each packet contains a portion of user data plus
some control info

Control info
Routing (addressing) info

Packets are received, stored briefly


(buffered) and passed on to the next node
Store and forward
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Datagram

Each packet is treated independently


Packets can take any practical route
Packets may arrive out of order
Packets may go missing
Up to receiver to re-order packets and
recover from missing packets

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Internet

Dumb Network

Smart Terminals

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Virtual Circuit
Preplanned route established before any
packets sent
Call request and call accept packets establish
connection (handshake)
Each packet contains a virtual circuit
identifier instead of destination address
No routing decisions required for each packet
Clear request to drop circuit
Not a dedicated path
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Combined datagram and VC


In packet switching we can combine datagram
networks and virtual-circuit networks.
Network route the first packet based on
the datagram addressing idea, but then a
virtual-circuit network is created for the rest
of the packets coming from the same source
and going to the same destination.

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OSI definitions for switching and routing

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The interaction between layers in the OSI model

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Physical layer

The physical layer is responsible for movements of


individual bits from one hop (node) to the next.
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Data link layer

The data link layer is responsible for moving


frames from one hop (node) to the next.
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Hop-to-hop delivery

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Network layer

The network layer is responsible for the


delivery of individual packets from
the source host to the destination host.
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Source-to-destination delivery

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Transport layer
Processes

The transport layer is responsible for the delivery


of a message from one process to another.
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Reliable process-to-process delivery of a message

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Summary of layers

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Main building blocks of a switch

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Abilities of modern switching


Support of different traffic profiles
constant and variable bit rates, bursty traffic

Switching of highly different data rates


kbits/s - Gbits/s

Support of varying delay requirements


constant and variable delays

Scalability
number of input/output links, link bit rates

High reliability
Low cost/throughput ratio

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Switching Systems
Network evolution and
switching modes

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Narrowband network evolution


Early telephone systems used analog technology frequency division multiplexing (FDM) and space
division switching (SDS)
With the help of digital technology time division
multiplexing (TDM) and time division switching (TDS)
became possible
Development of electronic components enabled
integration of TDM and TDS => Integrated Digital
Network (IDN)
Different communications networks were developed
circuit switching for voice-only services
packet switching for (low-speed) data services
dedicated networks, e.g. for video and specialized data
services
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Network evolution (1)


Different communications networks
circuit switching for voice-only services

packet switching for (low-speed) data services

dedicated networks, e.g. for video and specialized data


services

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UNI=User Network
Interface

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Network evolution (2)


Service integration became to better utilize
communications resources then
IDN ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network)
ISDN offered

integrated transport and full digital access


inter-node signaling (based on packet switching)
packet and circuit switched end-to-end digital connections
three types of channels (B=64 kbit/s, D=16 kbit/s and
H=nx64 kbit/s)

Three types of long-distance interconnections


circuit switched, packet switched and signaling connections

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Note. Broadband services continued to be supported by separate dedicated networks

Broadband network evolution (1)

Progress in optical technologies enabled huge transport capacities


integration of transmission of all the different networks BB became
possible
Switching nodes of different networks co-located to configure
multifunctional switches

Each type of traffic handled by its own switching module


narrow-band integrated access and broad-band integrated
transmission
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NNI=Network-to-Network Interface

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Broadband network evolution (2)


For elimination the limitations of N-ISDN:
low bit rate channels
no support for variable bit rates
no support for large bandwidth services

connection oriented packet switching scheme (ATM), was


developed
B-ISDN concept

integrated broadband transport and switching (no more need for


specialized switching modules or dedicated networks)

NNI=Network-to-Network Interface

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UNI=User Network
Interface

Switching modes
Circuit switching
Cell and frame switching
Packet switching
Routing
Layer 3+ switching
Label switching

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Circuit switching
End-to-end circuit established for a connection

Signaling used to set-up, maintain and release circuits


Circuit offers constant bit rate and constant transport delay
Equal quality offered to all connections
Transport capacity of a circuit cannot be shared
Applied in conventional telecommunications networks (e.g.
PDH/PCM and N-ISDN)

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Cell switching
Virtual circuit (VC) established for a connection

Data transported in fixed length frames (cells), which


carry information needed for routing cells along
established VCs
Forwarding tables in network nodes

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Cell switching
Signaling used to set-up, maintain and release VCs as
well as update forwarding tables
VCs offer constant or variable bit rates and
transport delay
Transport capacity of links shared by a number of
connections (statistical multiplexing)
Different quality classes supported
Applied in ATM networks

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Frame switching
Virtual circuits (VC) established usually for virtual
LAN connections
Data transported in variable length frames (e.g.
Ethernet frames), which carry information needed
for routing frames along established VCs
Forwarding tables in network nodes

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Frame switching (2)


Signaling used to set-up, maintain and release
VCs as well as update forwarding tables
VCs offer constant or variable bit rates and
transport delay
Transport capacity of links shared by a
number of connections (statistical
multiplexing)
Different quality classes supported
Applied, e.g. in offering virtual LAN services
for business customers
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Packet switching
No special transport path established for a
connection
Variable length data packets carry information used
by network
Nodes in making forwarding decisions
No signaling needed for connection setup

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Packet switching (2)


Forwarding tables in network nodes are
updated by routing protocols
No guarantees for bit rate or transport delay
Best effort service for all connections in
conventional packet switched networks
Transport capacity of links shared effectively
Applied in IP (Internet Protocol) based
networks

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Layer 3 - 7 switching
L3-switching evolved from the need to speed up (IP
based) packet routing
L3-switching separates routing and forwarding
A communication path is established based on the
first packet associated with a flow of data
Succeeding packets are switched along the path (i.e.
software based routing combined with hardware
based one)
Note: In wire-speed routing, traditional routing is
implemented in hardware to eliminate performance
bottlenecks associated with software based routing
(i.e., conventional routing reaches/surpasses L3switching speeds)
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Layer 3 - 7 switching (2)


In L4 - L7 switching, forwarding decisions are
based not only on MAC address of L2 and
destination/source address of L3, but also on
application port number of L4 (TCP/UDP) and
on information of layers above L4

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Label switching
Evolved from the need to speed up
connectionless packet switching and utilize
L2-switching in packet forwarding
A label switched path (LSP) established for a
connection
Forwarding tables in network nodes

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Label switching (2)


Signaling used to set-up, maintain and release LSPs
A label is inserted in front of a L3 packet (behind L2
frame header)
Packets forwarded along established LSPs by using
labels in L2 frames
Quality of service supported
Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) is a
standardized label switching concept and is used to
carry IP packet, e.g. over ATM, Ethernet and PPP
Generalized label switching scheme (GMPLS) extends
MPLS to be applied also in optical networks, i.e.,
enables light waves to be used as LSPs
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