When you think of the open source OpenDaylight (ODL) project, you generally think of new, forward-leaning networks: ODL is often used for software-defined networking. And when you think of CMTSs, you think of old technology that cable operators have used for decades.
But Lumina Networks and CableLabs are bridging the old and the new to help cable providers solve a problem. Lumina today announced commercial support for the open source PacketCable multimedia interface (PCMM) developed for OpenDaylight.
“For multimedia applications that operate over the cable network, you need quality of service for those connections,” said Kevin Woods, vice president of product management at Lumina Networks. “Those parameters are programmed by a quality management system. If you buy a CMTS from a certain vendor, you have to buy that vendor’s QoS management tool set. If you have a bunch of CMTSs, that starts to get complicated. The PCMM plug-in for OpenDaylight allows you to program those parameters for all CMTSs in a standard way without using any vendor-proprietary tool set.”
Lumina Networks is productizing the PCMM interface that has been developed at CableLabs over the last several years and which has more recently been worked on within the ODL project. While many vendor products have supported the PCMM interface specification, this is the first commercialized edition of the community project. Lumina’s PCMM plug-in will manage QoS across disparate CMTS devices from different vendors.
PCMM has been around for more than a decade as an interface to talk to CMTSs, according to Woods. “It’s fairly widely deployed,” he said. “The difference here is we’re supporting it from the ODL platform. CableLabs engineers initiated the PCMM project at ODL and they developed the interface. But now Lumina is getting involved in that project in ODL and will support the plug-in commercially.”
This is the first product that Lumina Networks has introduced in the cable operator space. But the company sees it as a stepping stone to broadening support for MSOs. Lumina is discussing the PCMM technology with operators at this week’s CableLabs Summer Conference in Keystone, Colorado.