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"Robust Communications Software"




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 : Wednesday : Programming Techniques : Wednesday Afternoon Tutorials (13:30 - 17:00)

Robust Communications Software

Royal Palm Salon 4
Wednesday, 13:30, half day



Greg Utas, Pentennea LLC

Tutorial number: 42

Carrier-grade software is required in embedded systems that implement communications networks, such as routers, switches, servers, gateways, and mobile handsets. Firms that operate communications networks are known as carriers. A carrier-grade product is one that satisfies a carrier's strict quality requirements, which typically include

  • Availability: <5 minutes downtime per year (five nines, or 99.999%)
  • Reliability: <1 failure per 10,000 sessions (four nines, or 99.99%)
  • Scalability: >100,000 users per system (site); millions of users per network

Although many products claim to be carrier grade, the fine print often reveals that this only refers to their hardware. But in today's complex communications products, software is usually the cause of outages and incorrect behavior. This course covers a broad range of carrier-grade software techniques that have been proven in flagship products and that significantly improve a product's chances of satisfying the most extreme requirements. Many of these techniques are seldom used elsewhere in the computing industry and sometimes supplant common practices that are ill advised in carrier-grade systems. The tutorial includes OO-related techniques that address concerns involving object management, execution overhead, and exception handling.

Intermediate: Participants should have a general familiarity with object orientation. The tutorial will be of particular interest to people who work on, or provide platforms for, communications products such as routers, switches, servers, gateways, and mobile handsets.

Greg Utas, Pentennea LLC:  Greg Utas is a consultant specializing in carrier-grade software and the author of the recently published _Robust Communications Software_ (Wiley, 2005). He has over 20 years of industrial experience, including Chief Software Architect roles at both Sonim Technologies (wireless push-to-talk services) and Nortel (GSM core networks). He became the first software architect at Nortel's Director level after leading a team of 50 designers who rewrote GSM call handling software using OO techniques.