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Routers ‘best platform for WAN connectivity’

Juniper takes it to the edge

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Juniper Networks has upgraded its edge router portfolio to offer greater reliability in IP services.

The M40e Internet router, which is based on its original M40 router, is a high density platform with redundancy features geared to the provision of services IP connectivity and application services (such as Layer 2 VPNs).

It comes with redundancy in its main components (two router engines and switch fabrics) and a feature called graceful routing protocol restart, which allows processes to be restarted without interrupting the flow of traffic through a router.

Vendors such as Cisco and Foundry are promoting Ethernet switches as a way to provision profitable telco services, but Juniper argues routers are for "better or worse" the best platform from which to deliver WAN connectivity services.

Alan Taylor, Juniper's technical director in EMEA, said that it supported Ethernet but its wasn't "focused on it to the exclusion of everything else".

Amid the current slowdown in telco spending, networking vendors are focusing on marketing kit that sits on the edge of service provider networks, allowing revenue generating services to be set up. Juniper argues its M40e provides the high availability and links into the back-end core of service provider networks needed to set these services up.

Whatever the merits of this assertion, its router is certainly a big beast.

The M40e router, which features Juniper Networks Internet Processor II and JUNOS Internet software, can deliver 40Gbps and can accommodate up to 32 PICs (physical interface cards). Its JUNOS software allows hot-swapping of interface cards.

The M40e comes with interface cards that allow a 2Mbps pipe to be split into 64K channels, and multichannel interface cards to offer more granularity to multi-megabit services. It also enables encrypted tunnels to be set up, by allowing IPSec cards to be slotted into the router. ®

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