Glossary of UFB Terms

Like much of the telecommunications industry, Ultra-Fast Broadband can be characterised by acronyms and some obscure jargon. The following is a list of some of the terms which are used in relation to the Ultra-Fast Broadband initiative.

 

Term Definition
AON Active Optical Network – a general term that describes any network configuration in which Multiplexors (MUXs), either in a Central Office or a cabinet, are used to connect multiple Optical Network Termination units (ONTs) via dark fibres. A Point to Point network is an AON with an emphasis on direct connection to each ONT, in which case each dark fibre provides a direct point-to-point physical connection between the MUX in a Central Office and each ONT. This contrasts with a GPON network, in which groups of ONTs are connected to an Optical Line Terminal in centralised locations within the network.
Bits The word bit is shorthand for “binary digit”, the 0 and the 1 which form the most basic element or unit in digital communications. 100Mbps stands for 100 Megabits per second and is a measure of the rate at which data is flowing from one point to another. Bytes   (capital “B”) are used when measuring data volumes, bits (lowercase “b”) are used when measuring data speeds.
BG Business Gateway – a more sophisticated form of the Residential Gateway (RG) which is described below. BGs contain extra features and often have more physical connection points, which make them more suitable to some businesses than a standard RG.
BNG Broadband Network Gateway – a general term for a piece of network equipment that terminates Layer 2 Services at the Service Provider part of the Network. BNGs provide Service Providers with mechanisms for management of data traffic on a per End User basis. They are described in more detail in the TR-101 standard.
Bytes A unit of digital information or data that generally consists of eight bits. 1000 bytes = 1 Kilobyte, 1000 kB = 1 Megabyte,   1000MB = 1Gigabyte, 1000 GB = 1Terabyte, 1000 Tb = 1 Petabyte, 1000 Pb = 1   Exabyte and 1000 Eb = 1 Zettabyte. Bytes (capital “B”) are used when measuring data volumes, bits (lowercase “b”) are used when measuring data   speeds.
CO Central Office – The termination point for the LFC’s Network. The Central Office is where the OLTs and/or MUXs (as applicable) are installed. Central Offices are expected to connect to at least several thousand End User premises.
CIR Committed Information Rate, meaning the rate of data transfer committed by the LFC to be provided as a minimum to end users.
Co-location Service Space and associated services such as power, cooling, access, lighting etc. at the CO.
CPE Customer Premises Equipment, such as routers or wireless modems.
DOCSIS 3.0 Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification –   an international telecommunications standard that permits the addition of high-speed data transfer over an existing HFC network
Downstream Data transfer from the Internet to the user, also known as “download” .
Drop The service line from the property boundary to the External Termination Point on the building.
EAS Ethernet Aggregation Switch – a specialised piece of network equipment used to aggregate data traffic to/from many Multiplexors (MUXs) or Optical Line Terminals (OLTs). EASs provide a connection mechanism to Broadband Network Gateways (BNGs).
EIR Excess Information Rate. A best efforts bit rate or connection speed. The additional bandwidth above the Committed Information Rate (guaranteed speed) which a subscriber can use, subject to traffic on the network.
Ethernet Described by the IEEE 802.3 standards, “Ethernet”  is a particular style of data traffic management and formatting for Layer 2 Services, and is increasingly being established as the dominant Layer 2 Service technology throughout the world.
ETP External Termination Point – the point where the service line or “drop” from the boundary connects to the premise.
EUBA Enhanced Unbundled Bitstream Service – a regulated Layer 2 Service in the New Zealand market today.
FAP Fibre Access Point – the point, underground or on a pole where the fibre branches off from the “passing” to a drop or service line.
Feeder fibre The fibre which runs from the exchange or Central Office to the cabinet.
FTTP / FTTH / FTTB Fibre To The Premise / Fibre To The Home / Fibre To The Business – generic terms for any broadband network architecture which deploys optical fibre all the way to the relevant end-user premise.
FTTC / FTTN Fibre To The Cabinet / Fibre To The Node – generic terms for broadband network architecture which deploys optical fibre to terminate in a streets cabinet or nodes up to some distance away from end-user premises, with the final connection to end-user premises typically being provided by legacy copper technology.
GEM GPON Encapsulation Method – a mechanism for the management of data traffic transport between multiple Optical Network Units (ONUs) and an Optical Line Terminal (OLT) in a GPON network configuration.
GPON Gigabit Passive Optical Network – a specific standard for connection of Optical Line Terminals (OLTs) to multiple Optical Network Termination units (ONTs) in which groups of ONTs are connected to an OLT using a shared dark fibre configuration. This is described in the ITU-T G.984 standard.
GPON Splitter A specialised piece of network equipment that connects a single dark fibre from one side to many dark fibres on the other.   It is used in the GPON network configuration to allow many Optical Network Units (ONUs) to share a single port on an Optical Line terminal (OLT) – hence the use of the word “Splitter” – splitting one dark fibre into many.
Handover Point Identifier An as-yet-to-be-determined information tag than can be used for identifying a physical network point at which the LFC’s Layer 2 Service is “connected” to the network equipment that is owned and operated by a Service Provider.
HFC Hybrid fibre-coaxial – a broadband network which combines optical fibre and coaxial cable. HFC has been commonly deployed globally by cable TV operators since the early 1990s, and in New Zealand by TelstraClear in Wellington and Christchurch.
IPTV Internet Protocol Television – distribution of television signals over fibre. The audio/video components of a TV programme are converted into IP packets which are then transmitted over the fibre data link.
ITP Invitation to Participate in the partner selection process for the Ultra-Fast Broadband initiative.
Layer 1 Services Services that operate at Layer 1 of the Open Systems Interconnection Model of network architecture. Layer 1 is normally associated with passive fibre optic network infrastructure. Often known as  “dark fibre” or “unlit” services.
Layer 2 Service Services that operate at Layer 2 of the Open Systems Interconnection Model of network architecture. Layer 2 is normally associated with active fibre optic network infrastructure (the electronics that light fibre). Often known as “lit” services.
LAN Local Area Network. A network of computers in close proximity such as a home, school, or office building.
LFC A local fibre company, being an entity in which CFH, the Government and a partner will hold shares, and through which the investment of CFH and the partner in relation to the UFB initiative will be effected.
MUX Multiplexor – a general term used to describe a piece of network equipment that terminates many dark fibres in an Active Optical Network (AON) configuration, and is installed in centralised locations within the LFC business.
ODN Optical Distribution Network – a general term for the specialised dark fibre configuration of a GPON network in which many ONTs share a single dark fibre for connection to an OLT.
OLT Optical Line Terminal – a general term for a specialised piece of GPON network equipment that terminates many dark fibres and is installed in centralised locations within the LFC Network. An OLT terminates the dark fibres from many Optical Network Termination units (ONTs).
ONT Optical Network Termination point – a general term for a specialised piece of network equipment that terminates a single dark fibre and is located at the End User premises.
Open Access Competition at all layers of the network, any to any connectivity at all layers, technology neutrality, transparency and fair trading (non-discrimination and /or equivalent treatment) between the layers.
OSS/BSS Operational Support Services/Business Support Services – the systems used to manage orders and provision services for customers.
Passing The fibre running down the street, also known as distribution fibre.
P-bit Priority bit(s) – a data traffic priority value between 0 and 7 set in the 3-bit tag field of the C-VLAN-ID and/or S-VLAN-ID fields (both of these fields can carry P-bit values).
PIR The Peak Information Rate is the maximum bit rate in bits/second at which a broadband connection will operate (upstream or downstream)
POI Point Of Interconnect – The place where the retail service provider’s network connects to the wholesale fibre provider’s network. This is in a Central Office. A feature of the UFB architecture is a single POI per candidate area, driving competition and supporting open access.
POTS Plain Old Telephone Service. A copper line.
P2P or Point-to-Point These are dedicated connections from the network to a premise, often with diversity (an additional connection) to ensure business continuity. They will generally be delivered to large corporate or Government customers.
RF Overlay A means of distributing television programming over fibre. The technology, adds a third lambda or light wavelength to the two existing ones, which is used solely for transmitting television. Like IPTV, RF overlay converts the signal into IP packets.
RG or RGW Residential Gateway – a mass produced piece of network equipment (often referred to as “the customer’s modem”) which sits in the home or office, connects to the Layer 2 Service on one side, and to the End User’s equipment (PCs, telephones, etc) on the other.
RSP Retail Service Provider – a telecommunications or internet service provider selling retail products to the market.
RRP Request for Refined Proposals, the request released by CFH in July 2010   seeking refinements to proposals and taking into account the Government’s announced changes to the business model and regulatory settings for UFB.
UAT User Acceptance Testing. A process to confirm that UFB deployment meets agreed technical requirements. Conducted by CFH on a sample basis, UAT is the final point in accepting a UFB stage, or geographic area, before CFH pays the partner.
Upstream Data transfer from the user to the Internet, also known as “upload”
WAN Wide Area Network – a computer network covering a broad area, typically crossing metropolitan, regional, or even national boundaries.
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