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Asynchronous Transfer
Mode (ATM)

A high-speed, broadband transmission data communication
technology based on packet switching and multiplexing
technologies, and used by telcos, long distance carriers,
and campus-wide backbone networks to carry integrated
data, voice, and video information


"A transfer mode in which information is
organized into cells; it is asynchronous in
the sense that the recurrence of cells
containing information from an individual
user is not necessarily periodic".

• ATM, like Frame Relay, was built on the
assumption that the underlying physical media
was reliable and flexible.
• i.e. Minimal error and flow control overhead is

Why faster than Frame Relay ? Faster than Frame Relay because :• Minimal error and flow control capabilities thus reduces overhead per cell • More streamlined (presents very little resistance to a flow) in nature • Use fixed-size cells simplifies the processing required at each ATM Node .

6Mbps to 622.Similarities between ATM and packet switching? Data rates .08Mbps (155.25.5 Mbps necessary for full-motion video) .

• Each cell contains 48 bytes of payload (data) • and 5 bytes of control and routing information in the header.Architecture • ATM uses fixed-size 53-byte cells. • The 5-byte header provides addressing information for switching the packet to its destination. .

SONET.ATM Protocol Reference Model Map data to the ATM cell structure Framing.52 Mbps. . cell structure & Logical Connections Virtual Channel Functions Virtual Path Functions Various data rates (155.08 Mbps) over various physical media types (Fiber Optic. 622.

ATM Adaptation Layer (AAL) • The function of the ATM Adaptation Layer (AAL) is to adapt the ATM Layer protocol to high-level networking protocols above it. If there's insufficient data to form a cell. • Segmentation And Reassembly (SAR): • Bottom sublayer. SAR pads the cell to make a full cell. responsible for breaking up high-level data streams into 48-byte segments for packaging into ATM cells. . responsible for performing functions relating to the class of service specified for the traffic being transported over ATM. The AAL consists of two sub layers: • Convergence Sublayer (CS): Top sublayer.

ATM Layer • This middle layer takes the payload formed by the ATM Adaptation Layer and adds the 5-byte header information and routes the packet to its destination. .

• Note : The ATM Layer and Physical Layer are together equivalent to the OSI model's Physical layer. .Physical Layer: • This bottom layer defines the electrical characteristics of the network interface and media over which the ATM cell is transmitted and converts the ATM cell into electrical signals.

make sure the various planes coordinate their activities properly – Layer management • Provides operations.Protocol Model has 3 planes • User – provides for user information transfer and associated controls (flow control. congestion control) • Control – performs call control and connection control functions (signaling) • Management – provides plane management and layer management and coordination functions Management plane – Plane management • Management functions related to system as a whole. and maintenance services thru info packets that switches exchange to keep system running effectively . administration.

• The advantages of this topology are that troubleshooting is simplified and the network can easily be reconfigured if required. . • ATM switches can provide bandwidth on demand. and additional connections can be formed with the switch when more bandwidth needs to be added.Other Information • ATM is generally deployed in a star topology with the ATM switch at the center acting as a concentrator.

.• ATM is a connection-oriented technology that supports both pointto-point and point-to-multipoint connections. but multipoint connections require multicasting • NOTE : ATM does not support broadcasts.

• The paths with which ATM connects end stations are called virtual channels (VCs). and • all cells in a given ATM transmission follow the same VC to ensure reliable data transmission.Virtual channels • ATM requires the establishment of a specific network path between two points before data can be transported between them. . • A VC exists only while data is being transmitted on it. • Virtual channels consist of one or more physical ATM links connected in a series for transmitting data between remote stations.

virtual path • A virtual path (VP) is a collection of VCs having the same source and destination points that can be used to pool traffic being transmitted to a given destination. • The header of an ATM cell contains routing information that defines the VC being used for the connection. (to be thought later) . • This routing information is called the Virtual Path Identifier/Virtual Channel Identifier (VPI/VCI).

ATM Connection Relationships Virtual Channel: basic logical communications channel Virtual Path: groups of “common” virtual channels Physical Transmission Path: physical communications link .

Advantages and Disadvantages .

Virtual Path/Virtual Channel Terminology Virtual Channel (VC) A generic term used to describe unidirectional transport of cells associated by a common unique identifier value Virtual Channel Identifier (VCI) A unique numerical tag for a particular VC link Virtual Channel Link A means of unidirectional transport of cells between the point where a VCI is assigned and where it is translated or terminated Virtual Channel Connection (VCC) A concatenation of VC links that extends between two connected ATM endpoints .

Virtual Path/Virtual Channel Terminology Virtual Path (VP) A generic term which describes unidirectional transfer of cells belong to VC that are associated with a common unique identifier Virtual Path Identifier (VPI) Identifies a particular VP Virtual Path Link A group of VC links identified by a common identifier between the point where the identifier (VPI) is assigned and where it is translated or terminated Virtual Path Connection (VPC) A concatenation of VP links that extends between ATM end-points where the VCIs are assigned and where they are translated or terminated .

. • • A Virtual Channel Identifier (VCI) identifiers a particular VC within a particular VP over a UNI or NNI. Each ATM cell contains an explicit label in its header to identify the virtual channel.Virtual Channels • The virtual channel (VC) is the fundamental unit of transport in ATM. • a Virtual Channel Identifier (VCI) • a Virtual Path Identifier (VPI) • A virtual channel (VC) is a communication channel that provides for the transport of ATM cells between two or more endpoints for information transfer.

.Virtual Paths  A Virtual Path (VP) is a group of Virtual Channels that are carried on the same physical facility and share the same Virtual Path Identifier (VPI) value.  Aim: Control cost of network :  By grouping connections sharing common paths through the network into a single unit.  Thus network management action can be applied to a small number of groups of connections instead of a large number of individual connections.

Virtual Connection Identifiers in UNIs and NNIs .

Between VPTs associated with the same VP.Connection Identifiers     The VP boundaries are delimited by Virtual Path Terminators (VPT). . only the VPI values are processed (and translated) at ATM network elements. both VPI and VCI are processed. and are not translated at intermediate ATM network elements. AT VPTs. The VCI values are processed only at VPTs.

Advantages of Virtual Paths • Simplified network architecture – allows separation of functionality into individual logical connections (virtual channel) and related groups of logical connections( virtual path) • Increased network performance and reliability. simplifies setup of new virtual channels over existing virtual call processing is required at transit nodes • Enhanced network services – supports user-specified closed groups/networks of VC bundles . Network deals with fewer entities • Reduced processing and short connection setup time – complex setup tasks are in virtual paths.

Call Establishment with Virtual Paths Virtual path control mechanism including calculating routes. allocatin Capacity. and storing connection State information Request for VCC VCC originates originates VPC exists? No Establish new VPC Yes Can QoS be satisfied? Yes No Block VCC or request more capacity Request granted? No Reject VCC request Yes Make connection .

without network intervention . low data rate channel for setting up signaling channels – User-to-network signaling virtual channel: set up between user and network to carry user data – User-to-user signaling virtual channel: set up between users within a VPC. allowing users to set up and tear down VCCs.150): – Semi-permanent VCC: no control signaling required – Meta-signaling channel: permanent channel. I.Control Signaling • A mechanism to establish and release VPCs and VCCs • The exchange of information involved in this process is referred to as control signaling • 4 methods for VCCs (as per ITU-T Rec.

It is by prior agreement. user to network or user to user. .Control Signaling: exchange of information 3 methods for VPCs • Semi-permanent: • No control signaling required. The path may be network to network. • Customer controlled: • Customer uses a signaling VCC to request VPC from the network • Network controlled: • Network establishes VPC for its own control and signaling use.

ATM Cell • Fixed size – 5-octet header – 48-octet information field • Why so small? – Small cells reduce queuing delay for high priority cells (essential for low delay) – Small cells can be switched more efficiently(essential for very high data rates) – Easier to implement switching of small cells in hardware – Fixed-size makes programming more easy .

ATM Cell Format .

AAL5 CLP: Cell Loss Priority HEC: Header Error Check (CRC-8) • Network-Network Interface (NNI) – switch-to-switch format – GFC becomes part of VPI field 12 16 3 1 8 384 (48 bytes) VPI VCI PTI CLP HEC (CRC-8) Payload . congestion control.Cell Format • User-Network Interface (UNI) 4 8 16 3 1 8 384 (48 bytes) GFC VPI VCI Type CLP HEC (CRC-8) Payload – – – – – – – host-to-switch format GFC: Generic Flow Control (still being defined) VCI: Virtual Circuit Identifier VPI: Virtual Path Identifier Type: management.

network simply enables or disables sending of cells – like XON/X-OFF flow control – Controlled transmission: flow control constraints – network provides info to user regarding how many cells it can send – like a credit mechanism for flow control .Header Format Generic Flow Control • Controls flow of data from user device into the ATM network only • Used to control traffic flow for different qualities of service at usernetwork interface (UNI) to alleviate/ facilitate short-term overload conditions – Note: not employed in network core (N-N Interface) • When GFC is enabled at the UNI. two procedures are used: – Uncontrolled transmission: not subject to flow control.

Together.Header Format • Virtual path identifier (VPI) – Constitutes a routing field for the network – 8 bit at U-N-I and – 12 bit at N-N-I: to support for an expanded no of VPC’s internal to the network • Virtual channel identifier (VCI) – Used for routing to and from the end user – A 16-bit channel ID. VPI and VCI identify a logical connection .

Administration. congestion experienced. SDU type=1 User data cell. SDU type=1 OAM segment associated cell OAM end-to-end associated cell Resource management cell Reserved for future function SDU = Service Data Unit OAM = Operations. congestion not experienced. and Maintenance . presence of congestion. SDU type=0 User data cell. Service Data Unit (SDU) type) Provide inband control information PT coding 000 001 010 011 100 101 110 111 ______________Interpretation____________ User data cell. congestion experienced. SDU type=0 User data cell.Payload type Header Format 3 bits Identifies cell as user data or network management cell. congestion not experienced.

Header Format • Cell loss priority – Provide guidance to the network in the event of congestion – 0 value : • Cell of high priority • Should not be discarded unless no alternate . – 1 value: • Cell of low priority • Subjected to discard within the network • Can assign to any cell who violet the agreement of traffic parameters • Header error control – Used for error control .

ATM Service Categories • Real-time service – Constant bit rate (CBR) – Real-time variable bit rate (rt-VBR) • Non-real-time service – Non-real-time variable bit rate (nrt-VBR) – Available bit rate (ABR) – Unspecified bit rate (UBR) – Guaranteed frame rate (GFR) .

Constant bit rate (CBR) • Used by application that require a continuous fixed data rate • Tight upper bound on delay • Can support uncompressed audio and video Eg: – Video conferencing – Interactive audio (telephony) – A/V distribution and retrieval (television. distance learning . video on demand) .

and Maximum Burst Size . Sustainable Cell Rate.Real-time variable bit rate (rt-VBR) • Time sensitive application – Tightly constrained delay and delay variation • rt-VBR(Real Time -Variable Bit Rate) applications transmit at a rate that varies with time wile CBR doesn’t Examples include bursty voice and video(COMPRESSED) – Can statistically multiplex connections • More flexible than CBR • Parameters include Peak Cell Rate.

Non-real-time variable bit rate (nrt-VBR) • Intended for bursty traffic with no tight constraints on delay and delay variation • Examples include airline reservations. banking transactions .

defense information (flying standby) . but low loss expected • No bound on traffic user can send • Users are able to shape their traffic to varying network conditions • Resources allocated to give at least MCR • Spare capacity shared among all ABR sources • Examples include LAN interconnection and basic critical data transfer systems such as banking.Available bit rate (ABR) • Application specifies Peak Cell Rate (PCR) and Minimum Cell Rate (MCR) • No performance guarantees other than minimum cell rate (MCR).

messaging.Unspecified bit rate (UBR) • For application that can tolerate some cell loss or variable delays (non-critical apps) • Cells forwarded on FIFO basis • Do not specify traffic related service guarantees • Examples include text/data/image transfer. remote terminals • Best effort service (wear your parachute) .

including IP and Ethernet. • Provide better services than UBR for frame-based traffic. • User is guaranteed that minimum capacity will be supported . • Allow user to reserve capacity for each GFR VC.Guaranteed frame rate (GFR) • Recent addition to support IP backbone sub networks. • To optimize the handling of frame based traffic that passes from a LAN through a router onto an ATM backbone network.

ATM Bit Rate Service Levels .

ATM Bit Rate Service Levels comparison • With ABR it is possible to make use of added buffering in the routers • For Bursty Data: ABR > GFR > VBR > UBR > CBR Class Description Example CBR Constant Bit Rate T1 circuit RT-VBR Real Time Variable Bit Rate Real-time videoconferencing NRT-VBR Non-real-time Variable Bit Rate Multimedia email ABR Available Bit Rate Browsing the Web UBR Unspecified Bit Rate Background file transfer .

• Essentially the “translation layer” between ATM layer and other layers. such as PCM(pulse code modulation ) and IP: • PCM (voice) – Assemble bits into cells – Re-assemble into constant flow • IP – Map IP packets onto ATM cells – Fragment IP packets – Use LAPF over ATM to retain all IP infrastructure .ATM Adaptation Layer • Need of an adaptation layer to support information transfer protocol not based on ATM.

PCM voice. LAPF.ATM Adaptation Layer (AAL) • Support higher-level protocols and/or native applications – e.. IP • AAL Services – Handle transmission errors – Segmentation and re-assembly • To enable larger blocks of data to be carried in the information field of ATM cells – Handle lost and misinserted cells (cells routed the wrong way) – Perform flow control and timing control(basics till mid term ) .g.

g. UBR: IP over ATM .g. nrt-VBR: frame relay. e.g.g. general data service (not really used by anyone) – AAL 5 (successor to AAL 3/4): e. real-time video – AAL 2: rt-VBR traffic. e. ATM.Supported Application types • Four AAL protocols defined: – AAL 1: CBR traffic. e. circuit emulation (T-1 over ATM). MPEG voice and video – AAL 3/4: nrt-VBR traffic. nrt-VBR: voice on demand. voice over ATM.

ATM Adaptation Layer (AAL) .

AAL Protocols • AAL layer has 2 sublayers: – Convergence Sublayer (CS) • Supports specific applications/protocols using AAL • Users attach via the Service Access Point (like a port number) which is address of application. • Common part (CPCS) and application service-specific part (SSCS) • It is service dependent – Segmentation and Reassembly Sublayer (SAR) • Packages data from CS into ATM cells and unpacks at other end .

AAL Protocols and PDUs .

AAL Protocol and Services Basis for classification: • requirement for a timing relationship between source and destination • requirement for a constant bit rate data flow • connection or connectionless transfer .

AAL Service Classification Class A Attribute Class B Class C Class D PacketizedConnection Circuit Datagram Emulation voice/videoOriented Data AAL1 Timing between source and destination AAL2 Required AAL 3 AAL 4 AAL 5 Not required Bit Rate Constant Variable Connection Mode Connection oriented Connectionless .

.Applications of AAL and ATM • • • • • • Circuit emulation (e. T-1 synchronous TDM circuits) VBR voice and video General data services IP over ATM Multiprotocol encapsulation over ATM (MPOA) LAN emulation (LANE) .g.


Segmentation and Reassembly

Segmentation and Reassembly
• ATM Adaptation Layer (AAL)
– AAL 1 and 2 designed for applications that need
guaranteed rate (e.g., voice, video)
– AAL 3/4 designed for packet data
– AAL 5 is an alternative standard for packet data





AAL Type 1
• AAL 1 is the interface between a real-time uncompressed byte
stream and ATM
• Got to be fast!
• AAL 1 takes 46 or 47 bytes of data and puts a one or two byte
header on front
• Constant-bit-rate source
• No convergence sublayer, only SAR sublayer
– SAR simply packs bits into cells and unpacks them at destination.
– No CS PDU structure is defined since CS sublayer primarily for
clocking and synchronization

AAL Type 1 .

short-frame traffic ATM PDU SAR PDU Header SN IT 47 Octets Payload SN: Sequence number IT: Information Type:BOM.SSM Length Indicator LI CRC . or low bit rate.COM.EOM.AAL Type 2  Intended for use with applications with variable bit-rate service on multiple channels (multiplexing).

connectionless (AAL4) or connection (AAL3) oriented.AAL Type 3/4 • Intended for variable bit rate applications that generate bursty data and demand low loss • Originally. now combined into single format (AAL 3/4) • Provides comprehensive sequencing and error control mechanisms .

AAL 3/4 .

AAL 3/4 Example (message mode) .

ready for the ATM layer • SAR sublayer also adds a 32-bit CRC at the end of the packet.AAL Type 5 • AAL 5 packets can be very large – up to 65.535 byte payload • AAL 5 not designed for real-time traffic • SAR sublayer takes the potentially large convergence sublayer packets and breaks them into 48 byte chunks. which is applied to the entire packet .

AAL Type 5 • Streamlined transport for connection oriented protocols – Reduce protocol processing overhead – Reduce transmission overhead – Ensure adaptability to existing transport protocols – primary function is segmentation and reassembly of higher-level PDUs .

AAL Type 5 .

AAL Type 5 .

AAL Protocol Descriptions .

Queries ?? .