Laurel unveils Layer 3 MPLS VPNs

Edge router start-up Laurel Networks Inc. this week announced RFC 2547bis-based MPLS IP VPN support for its ST200 router.

The ST200 is currently deployed in production networks within the U.S. and Europe, with ST200 IP VPN software entering carrier trials in June. The company is believed to be on the short list for an edge buildout at Cable and Wireless PLC.

RFC 2547bis specifies use of the BGP routing protocol to enable provider edge routers to administer and share subscriber VPN tables. The IETF document is garnering a lot of recent support from router and multiservice switch vendors - many of whom will showcase it in the largest MPLS interoperability demonstration to date at Supercomm next month - even though it's been criticized by a couple of scientists for introducing scalability and administration problems.

Laurel's implementation of 2547bis extends existing Layer 2 VPN support announced in September of 2001. Laurel's Layer 2 VPN support is based on IETF Draft Martini and enables carriers to offer ATM, frame relay and Ethernet private line services, the company says.

Laurela's ST200 supports interfaces ranging from fractional T-1/E-1 to OC-48/STM-16. Ports are software configurable to support ATM, frame relay, Ethernet and/or IP services on each interface or channel.

This capability eliminates central office grooming equipment and the reconfiguration costs associated with moving IP VPN customers to different speeds or access technologies, Laurel claims.

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