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Versions: 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 RFC 4165

Network Working Group                                      Tom George
INTERNET-DRAFT                                                Alcatel
                                                            Ram Dantu
                                                             IPmobile
                                                      Malleswar Kalla
                                                            Telcordia
                                           Hanns Juergen Schwarzbauer
                                                              Siemens
                                                      Greg Sidebottom
                                                      Nortel Networks
                                                        Ken Morneault
                                                        Cisco Systems


Expires May 2001                                    November 22, 2000


             SS7 MTP2-User Peer-to-Peer Adaptation Layer
                  <draft-ietf-sigtran-m2pa-01.txt>


Status of This Memo

This document is an Internet-Draft and is in full conformance with all
provisions of Section 10 of RFC 2026. Internet-Drafts are working
documents of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), its areas,
and its working groups.  Note that other groups may also distribute
working documents as Internet-Drafts.

Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
material or to cite them other than as 'work in progress.'

The list of current Internet-Drafts can be accessed at
http://www.ietf.org/ietf/1id-abstracts.txt

The list of Internet-Draft Shadow Directories can be accessed at
http://www.ietf.org/shadow.html.

To learn the current status of any Internet-Draft, please check the
'1id-abstracts.txt' listing contained in the Internet- Drafts Shadow
Directories on ftp.is.co.za (Africa), nic.nordu.net (Europe),
munnari.oz.au (Pacific Rim), ftp.ietf.org (US East Coast), or
ftp.isi.edu (US West Coast).











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Abstract

This Internet Draft defines a protocol supporting the transport of SS7
MTP Layer 3 signaling messages over IP using the services of the
Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP).  This protocol would be
used between SS7 Signaling Points employing the MTP Level 3
protocol. The SS7 Signaling Points may also employ standard SS7 links
using the SS7 Message Transfer Part (MTP) Layer 2 to provide transport
of MTP Layer 3 signaling messages.










































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                        TABLE OF CONTENTS

1.  Introduction............................................. 4
  1.1  Scope................................................. 4
  1.2  Terminology........................................... 4
  1.3  Abbreviations......................................... 5
  1.4  Conventions........................................... 5
  1.5  Signaling Transport Architecture...................... 6
  1.6  Services Provided by M2PA............................. 7
  1.7  Functions Provided by M2PA............................ 8
  1.8  Definition of the M2PA Boundaries..................... 9
  1.9  Differences Between M2PA and M2UA.....................10
2.  Protocol Elements........................................12
  2.1  Common Message Header.................................12
  2.2  M2PA Messages.........................................13
3.  M2PA Link States.........................................15
4.  Procedures...............................................17
  4.1  Procedures to Support MTP2 Features...................17
  4.2  Procedures to Support the MTP3/MTP2 Interface.........21
5.  Examples of M2PA Procedures..............................24
  5.1  Link Initialization (Alignment).......................24
  5.2  Message Transmission and Reception....................26
  5.3  Link Status Indication................................26
  5.4  Link Status Message (Processor Outage)................27
  5.5  Congestion Notification to Upper layer................28
  5.6  Link Deactivation.....................................29
  5.7  Link Changeover.......................................30
6.  Security.................................................32
7.  IANA Considerations......................................32
8.  Acknowledgements.........................................32
9.  References...............................................33
10. Author's Addresses.......................................34


















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1. Introduction

1.1 Scope

There is a need for Switched Circuit Network (SCN) signaling protocol
delivery over an IP network.  This includes delivery from a Signalling
Gateway (SG) to a Media Gateway Controller (MGC) or IP Signaling
Point, as described in the Framework Architecture for Signalling
Transport [1]. This could allow for convergence of some signaling
and data networks. SCN Signaling nodes would have access to databases
and other devices in the IP network domain that do not employ SS7
signaling links. There may also be operational cost and performance
advantages when traditional signaling links are replaced by IP network
"connections".

The delivery mechanism described in this document allows for full MTP3
message handling and network management capabilities between any two
SS7 nodes, communicating over an IP network. An SS7 node equipped with
an IP network connection is called an IP Signaling Point (IPSP). The
IPSPs function as traditional SS7 nodes using the IP network instead
of SS7 links.

The delivery mechanism should

   * Support seamless operation of MTP3 protocol peers over an IP
     network connection.

   * Support the MTP Level 2 / MTP Level 3 interface boundary.

   * Support management of SCTP transport associations and traffic
     instead of MTP2 Links.

   * Support asynchronous reporting of status changes to management.


1.2 Terminology

MTP - The Message Transfer Part of the SS7 protocol [2].

MTP2 - MTP Level 2, the MTP signaling link layer.

MTP3 - MTP Level 3, the MTP signaling network layer.

MTP2-User - A protocol that normally uses the services of MTP Level
2. The only MTP2 user is MTP3.

Signaling End Point (SEP) - A node in an SS7 network that originates
or terminates signaling messages.  One example is a central office
switch.

IP Signaling Point (IPSP) - An SS7 Signaling Point with an IP
network connection used for SS7 over IP.

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Signaling Gateway (SG) - A signaling agent that receives/sends SCN
native signaling at the edge of the IP network [4]. In this context,
an SG is an SS7 Signaling Point that has both an IP network connection
used for SS7 over IP, and a traditional (non-IP) link to an SS7
network.

Signaling Transfer Point (STP) - A node in an SS7 network that routes
signaling messages based on their destination point code in the SS7
network.

Association - An association refers to a SCTP association [5]. The
association provides the transport for MTP3 protocol data units and
M2PA adaptation layer peer messages.

Network Byte Order - Most significant byte first, also known as "Big
Endian".

Stream - A stream refers to a SCTP stream [5].


1.3 Abbreviations

BSNT   - Backward Sequence Number to be Transmitted

FSNC   - Forward Sequence Number of last message accepted by
         remote level 2

MSU    - Message Signal Unit

SCN    - Switched Circuit Network

SCTP   - Stream Control Transmission Protocol

SIF    - Signaling Information Field

SIO    - Service Information Octet

SLC    - Signaling Link Code

SS7    - Signaling System 7

SSN    - Stream Sequence Number


1.4 Conventions

The keywords MUST, MUST NOT, REQUIRED, SHALL, SHALL NOT, SHOULD,
SHOULD NOT, RECOMMENDED, NOT RECOMMENDED, MAY, and OPTIONAL, when they
appear in this document, are to be interpreted as described in
[8].


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1.5 Signaling Transport Architecture

The architecture that has been defined [4] for Switched Circuit
Network (SCN) signaling transport over IP uses multiple components,
including an IP transport protocol, the Stream Control Transmission
Protocol (SCTP), and an adaptation module to support the services
expected by a particular SCN signaling protocol from its underlying
protocol layer.

Within this framework architecture, this document defines an SCN
adaptation module that is suitable for the transport of SS7 MTP3
messages.

Figure 1 shows the seamless interworking at the MTP3 layer.  MTP3 is
adapted to the SCTP layer using the MTP2 User Peer-to-peer Adaptation
Layer (M2PA).  All the primitives between MTP3 and MTP2 are supported
by M2PA.  The SCTP association acts as one SS7 link between the IPSPs.



            ********   IP   ********
            * IPSP *--------* IPSP *
            ********        ********

            +------+        +------+
            | MTP3 |        | MTP3 |
            +------+        +------+
            | M2PA |        | M2PA |
            +------+        +------+
            | SCTP |        | SCTP |
            +------+        +------+
            | IP   |        | IP   |
            +------+        +------+

    IP    - Internet Protocol
    IPSP  - IP Signaling Point
    SCTP  - Stream Control Transmission Protocol
            (see Reference [5])

         Figure 1:  M2PA Symmetrical Peer-to-Peer Architecture


An IPSP may have SCCP and other SS7 layers above MTP3. Figure 2 shows
an example. The Signaling Gateway is an IPSP equipped with both
traditional SS7 and IP network connections.  In effect, the Signaling
Gateway acts as an STP.  Any of the nodes in the diagram could have
SCCP or other SS7 layers. STPs may or may not be present in the SS7
path between the SEP and the SG.





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    ********  SS7   ***************   IP   ********
    * SEP  *--------*     SG      *--------* IPSP *
    ********        ***************        ********

    +------+                               +------+
    | TCAP |                               | TCAP |
    +------+                               +------+
    | SCCP |                               | SCCP |
    +------+        +-------------+        +------+
    | MTP3 |        |    MTP3     |        | MTP3 |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+
    | MTP2 |        | MTP2 | M2PA |        | M2PA |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+
    | MTP1 |        | MTP1 | SCTP |        | SCTP |
    |      |        |      +------+        +------+
    |      |        |      | IP   |        | IP   |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+

    SEP   - SS7 Signaling Endpoint

         Figure 2:  M2PA in IP Signaling Gateway


Figure 2 is only an example. Other configurations are possible. For
example, IPSPs without traditional SS7 links could use the protocol
layers MTP3/M2PA/SCTP/IP to route SS7 messages in a network with all
IP links.

Another example, related to Figure 2, is that two SGs could be
connected over an IP network to form an SG mated pair similar to the
way STPs are provisioned in traditional SS7 networks.


1.5.1  Point Code Representation

The MTP specification requires that each node with an MTP3 layer is
represented by an SS7 point code. In particular, each IPSP must have
its own SS7 point code.

1.6 Services Provided by M2PA

The SS7 MTP3/MTP2 (MTP2-User) interface is retained in the IPSP. The
M2PA protocol layer is required to provide the equivalent set of
services to its user as provided by MTP Level 2 to MTP Level 3.

These services are described in the following subsections.

1.6.1 Support for MTP Level 2 / MTP Level 3 interface boundary

This interface is the same as the MTP2/MTP3 interface described in
[2], with the addition of support for larger sequence numbers in
[7].

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Because SCTP uses larger sequence numbers than MTP, the MTP3
Changeover procedure must use the Extended Changeover Order and
Extended Changeover Acknowledgment messages described in [7]. This
will allow for use of the SCTP stream sequence numbers in the
changeover messages.

1.6.2 Support for peer-to-peer communication

In SS7, MTP Level 2 sends three types of messages, known as signal
units: Message Signal Units (MSUs), Link Status Signal Units (LSSUs),
and Fill-In Signal Units (FISUs).

MSUs originate at a higher level than MTP2, and are destined for a
peer at another node. Likewise, M2PA passes these messages from MTP3
to SCTP as data for transport across a link. These are called User
Data messages in M2PA.

LSSUs allow peer MTP2 layers to exchange status information. Analogous
messages are needed for M2PA. The Link Status message serves this
purpose.

FISUs are sent when no other signal units are waiting to be sent. This
purpose is served by the heartbeat messages in SCTP. FISUs also carry
acknowledgment of messages. This function is performed by
SCTP. Therefore, it is unnecessary for M2PA to provide a protocol unit
like the FISU.

1.7 Functions Provided by M2PA

1.7.1 Support of MTP3/MTP2 Primitives

M2PA receives the primitives sent from MTP3 to its lower layer. M2PA
processes these primitives or maps them to appropriate primitives at
the M2PA/SCTP interface. Likewise, M2PA sends primitives to MTP3 like
those used in the MTP3/MTP2 interface.

1.7.2 MTP2 Functionality

M2PA provides MTP2 functionality that is not provided by SCTP. This
includes

   - Data retrieval to support the MTP3 changeover procedure

   - Reporting of link status changes to MTP3

   - Processor outage procedure

   - Link alignment procedure




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1.7.3 Mapping of SS7 and IP Entities

For each IP link, the M2PA layer must maintain a map of the SS7 link
to its SCTP association and its corresponding IP destination.

1.7.3 SCTP Stream Management

SCTP allows a user-specified number of streams to be opened during the
initialization.  It is the responsibility of the M2PA layer to ensure
proper management of the streams allowed within each association.

1.7.4  Retention of MTP3 in the SS7 Network

M2PA allows MTP3 to perform all of its Message Handling and Network
Management functions with IPSPs as with other SS7 nodes.


1.8 Definition of the M2PA Boundaries

1.8.1 Definition of the M2PA / MTP Level 3 boundary

The upper layer primitives provided by M2PA are the same as those
provided by MTP2 to MTP3. Following is a list of these primitives.

Primitives sent from MTP3 to M2PA:

Data Request - Used to send a Data Message for transmission.

Start Request - Used to establish a link.

Stop Request - Used to release a link.

Retrieve BSNT Request - Request the BSNT for the changeover procedure.

Retrieval Request and FSNC - Request retrieval of unacknowledged and
unsent messages. This request includes the FSNC received from the
remote end.

Flush Buffers Request - Requests that all transmit and receive
buffers be emptied.

Continue Request - Requests that processing resume after a processor
outage.

Emergency Request - This is ignored by M2PA.

Emergency Ceases Request - This is ignored by M2PA.


Primitives sent from M2PA to MTP3:

Data Indication - Used to deliver received Data Message to MTP3.

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Congestion Indication - Indicates change in congestion level. The
indication includes the congestion level, if the protocol is using the
optional congestion levels.

In Service Indication - Indicates that the link is in service.

Out of Service Indication - Indicates that the link is out of service.

Retrieved Messages Indication - Indicates delivery of unacknowledged
and unsent messages.

Retrieval Complete Indication - Indicates that delivery of
unacknowledged and unsent messages is complete.

BSNT Confirm - Replies to the BSNT Request. The confirmation includes
the BSNT.

BSNT Not Retrievable Confirm - Replies to the BSNT Request when the
BSNT cannot be determined.

Remote Processor Outage Indication - Indicates processor outage at
remote end.

Remote Processor Recovered Indication - Indicates recovery from
processor outage at remote end.


1.8.2 Definition of the Lower Layer Boundary between M2PA and SCTP

The upper layer primitives provided by SCTP are described in Reference
[5] Section 10 "Interface with Upper Layer".


1.9 Differences Between M2PA and M2UA

The MTP2 User Adaptation Layer (M2UA) [6] also adapts the MTP3 layer
to the SCTP/IP stack. It does so through a backhauling architecture
[4]. This section intends to clarify some of the differences between
the M2PA and M2UA approaches.

A possible M2PA architecture is shown in Figure 3. Here the IPSP's
MTP3 uses its underlying M2PA as a replacement for
MTP2. Commmunication between the two layers MTP3/M2PA is defined by
the same primitives as in SS7 MTP3/MTP2. M2PA performs functions
similar to MTP2.

A comparable architecture for M2UA is shown in Figure 4. In M2UA, the
MGC's MTP3 uses the SG's MTP2 as its lower SS7 layer. In SS7,
commmunication between the MTP3 and MTP2 layers is defined by
primitives. In M2UA, the MTP3/MTP2 communication is defined as M2UA
messages and sent over the IP connection.

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    ********  SS7   ***************   IP   ********
    * SEP  *--------*     SG      *--------* IPSP *
    ********        ***************        ********

    +------+        +-------------+        +------+
    | SCCP |        |    SCCP     |        | SCCP |
    +------+        +-------------+        +------+
    | MTP3 |        |    MTP3     |        | MTP3 |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+
    | MTP2 |        | MTP2 | M2PA |        | M2PA |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+
    | MTP1 |        | MTP1 | SCTP |        | SCTP |
    |      |        |      +------+        +------+
    |      |        |      | IP   |        | IP   |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+


         Figure 3:  M2PA in IP Signaling Gateway



    ********  SS7   ***************   IP   ********
    * SEP  *--------*     SG      *--------* MGC  *
    ********        ***************        ********

    +------+                               +------+
    | SCCP |                               | SCCP |
    +------+                               +------+
    | MTP3 |             (NIF)             | MTP3 |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+
    | MTP2 |        | MTP2 | M2UA |        | M2UA |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+
    | MTP1 |        | MTP1 | SCTP |        | SCTP |
    |      |        |      +------+        +------+
    |      |        |      | IP   |        | IP   |
    +------+        +------+------+        +------+

       NIF   - Nodal Interworking Function


         Figure 4:  M2UA in IP Signaling Gateway











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M2PA and M2UA are similar in that:

   a. Both transport MTP3 data messages.

   b. Both present an MTP2 upper interface to MTP3.

Differences between M2PA and M2UA include:

   a. M2PA: IPSP processes MTP3-to-MTP2 primitives.
      M2UA: MGC transports MTP3-to-MTP2 primitives to SG's MTP2
            (via the NIF) for processing.

   b. M2PA: SG-IPSP connection is an SS7 link.
      M2UA: SG-MGC connection is not an SS7 link.

   c. M2PA: SG is an SS7 node with a point code.
      M2UA: SG is not an SS7 node and has no point code.

   d. M2PA: SG can have upper SS7 layers, e.g., SCCP.
      M2UA: SG does not have upper SS7 layers since it has no MTP3.

Potential users of M2PA and M2UA should be aware of these differences
when deciding how to use them for SS7 signaling transport over IP
networks.


2.  Protocol Elements

This section describes the format of various messages used in this
protocol.

All fields in an M2PA message must be transmitted in the network byte
order, i.e., most significant byte first, unless otherwise stated.


2.1 Common Message Header

The protocol messages for M2PA require a message header structure
which contains a version, message type and message length.  This
message header is common among all SCN adaptation layers. The
header structure is shown in Figure 5.












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    0                   1                   2                   3
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
   |    Version    |     Spare     |         Message Type          |
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
   |                        Message Length                         |
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
   |                                                               |


                 Figure 5:  Common Message Header


2.1.1  Version

The version field (vers) contains the version of the M2PA adapation
layer.  The supported versions are:

      01   Release 1.0 of M2PA protocol

2.1.2  Message Type

The valid message types are defined below and the message contents are
described in Section 2.2.  Each message can contain parameters.

The following list contains the message types for the defined messages.


     MTP2 User Adaptatation Messages

        Type                     Value (Hex)

        User Data                0601
        Link Status              0602


2.1.3  Message Length

The Message length defines the length of the message in octets, not
including the header.

2.2 M2PA Messages

The following section defines the messages and parameter contents.  An
M2PA message consists of a Common Message Header followed by the data
appropriate to the message.






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   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
                                 ...
   |                     Common Message Header                     |
                                 ...
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
                                 ...
   |                         Message Data                          |
                                 ...
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+


2.2.1 User Data

The User Data is the data sent from the MTP3 in the form of the
contiguous LI, SIO, and SIF octets of the MSU ([2] Q.703, section 2.2
Signal Unit Format). The LI octet includes the two undefined bits
between the SIO and LI fields.

The format for the User Data message is as follows:


    0                   1                   2                   3
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
                                 ...
   |                            Data                               |
                                 ...
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+


No padding is added to the MTP3 message.

Note that the Data field contains only the LI, SIF, and SIO
octets. The other components of the message transmitted by MTP2 (the
Flag, BSN, BIB, FSN, FIB, CK) are not included in M2PA.

Note: The two spare bits in the LI octet are used in a national
version of SS7 by MTP3 as a Priority field. See [9], section 14
"Common Characteristics of message signal unit formats", section 14.2
(A) Priority Indicator (PRI).


2.2.2  Link Status

The MTP2 Link Status message can be sent between M2PA peers to
indicate link status. This message performs a function similar to the
the Link Status Signal Unit in MTP2.






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    0                   1                   2                   3
    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+
   |                            State                              |
   +-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+


The valid values for State are shown in the following table.

    Value  Description

     1     In Service
     2     Processor Outage
     3     Processor Outage Ended
     4     Busy
     5     Busy Ended


3.  M2PA Link States

The M2PA link moves from one state to another in response to various
events.  The events that may result in a change of state include:

   - MTP3 primitive requests

   - SCTP notifications

   - Receipt of Status messages from the peer M2PA

   - Expiration of certain timers

Figure 6 illustrates state changes together with the causing events.
Note that some of the error conditions are not shown in the state
diagram.

Following is a list of the M2PA Link States and a description of each.

IDLE - State of link during power-up initialization.

OOS - Out Of Service. Power-up initialization is complete.

AIP - Alignment In Progress. M2PA is attempting to establish SCTP
association.

INS-LOCAL - In Service Local. Association is established. M2PA is
waiting for peer to verify that it is In Service.

INS - In Service. Link is ready for traffic.

RETRIEVAL - Link no longer carries traffic. M2PA is waiting for
request for message retrieval from MTP3.

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                           +-----------+
                           |   IDLE    |
                           +-----------+
                                 |
                                 | Power On
                                 |
                                 V
                           +-----------+
                  +------->|    OOS    |---------+
                  |        +-----------+         |
                  |              |               |
                  |              | Client AND    | Server AND
                  |              | MTP3 Start    | MTP3 Start
                  |              |               |
                  |              V               |
                  |        +-----------+         |
                  |        |    AIP    |<--------+
                  |        +-----------+
                  |              |
                  |              | SCTP
                  |              | Communication Up
                  |              |
                  |              V
                  |        +-----------+
                  |        | INS-LOCAL |
                  |        +-----------+
                  |              |
                  |              | Link Status
                  |              | In Service received
                  |              |
                  |              V
                  |        +-----------+
                  |        |    INS    |
                  |        +-----------+
                  |              |
        Retrieval |              | MTP3 Stop
        Complete  |              | OR SCTP Communication Error
                  |              | OR SCTP Communication Lost
                  |              | OR T6 Expiration
                  |              |
                  |              V
                  |        +-----------+
                  +--------| RETRIEVAL |
                           +-----------+


                Figure 6: M2PA Link State Transition Diagram.





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4.  Procedures

4.1 Procedures to Support MTP2 Features

4.1.1 Signal Unit Format, Delimitation, Acceptance

Messages for transmission across the network must follow the format
described in section 2.

SCTP provides reliable, in-sequence delivery. Therefore the related
functionality of MTP2 is not needed. SCTP does not provide functions
related to Link State Control in MTP2. These functions must be
provided by M2PA.


4.1.2 Link Alignment

Link alignment includes the establishment of an SCTP association and a
handshaking procedure between the M2PA peers to verify that the
association is ready to be used as a link.

To prevent duplicate associations from being established, it must be
decided in advance which endpoint initiates the establishment of the
association. In a pair of endpoints, the endpoint that initiates the
establishment of the association is called the client. The other
endpoint is the server. An endpoint may be a client in its
relationship with one endpoint, and a server in its relationship with
another endpoint. The designations of client and server are needed
only to decide which endpoint initiates the establishment of the
association. After that, the endpoints function as peers.

The client initiates the association using the server's IP address and
the M2PA well-known port number as the destination endpoint. In order
to allow for multiple links between the two endpoints, the client uses
a different local port number for each link. It must be decided in
advance which local ports are used by the client. Each of these client
ports must be known to the server. Each combination of client IP
address/port and server IP address/port must be mapped to the same
Signaling Link Code (SLC) in the client and server, so that each
endpoint knows which link is being created at the time the SCTP
association is established. However, M2PA does not do any processing
based on the SLC.

An example of the relationships between the associations and the SLCs
is shown in Figure 7 and Table 1. Note that a link is an SCTP
association identified by two endpoints, in this case a client and
server. Each endpoint is identified by an IP address and port
number. Each association is mapped to an SLC. Table 1 is only
conceptual. The actual method for mapping the SCTP associations to the
SLCs is implementation dependent.



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                 Client                       Server

                  IPA                           IPB
            +-------------+               +-------------+
            |             |     SCTP      |             |
            |   SLC = a   | association 1 |   SLC = a   |
            |  port = P1  +---------------+  port = PW  |
            |             |               |             |
            |             |               |             |
            |             |               |             |
            |             |     SCTP      |             |
            |   SLC = b   | association 2 |   SLC = b   |
            |  port = P2  +---------------+  port = PW  |
            |             |               |             |
            |             |               |             |
            +-------------+               +-------------+

      IPA    = IP address of Client
      IPB    = IP address of Server
      P1, P2 = Pre-selected port numbers for Client
      PW     = Well-known port number for M2PA

                Figure 7: Associations and SLCs


     +-------------+---------------------------------------+-----+
     | Association |      Client       |      Server       | SLC |
     |             +------------+------+------------+------+     |
     |             | IP address | Port | IP address | Port |     |
     +=============+============+======+============+======+=====+
     |      1      |    IPA     |  P1  |    IPB     |  PW  |  a  |
     +-------------+------------+------+------------+------+-----+
     |      2      |    IPA     |  P2  |    IPB     |  PW  |  b  |
     +-------------+------------+------+------------+------+-----+

                  Table 1: Associations and SLCs


The association shall contain two streams in each direction. Stream 0
is designated for Link Status messages. Stream 1 is designated for
User Data messages.

If the SCTP association is not established, the client M2PA sends the
ASSOCIATE primitive to SCTP. The client should attempt to establish
the association periodically until it is successful.

If SCTP fails to establish the association, and M2PA had received a
Start Request from its MTP3, then M2PA shall report to MTP3 that the
link is out of service. If M2PA has an SCTP association ID for that
association, it should ABORT the association. The association ID is a
number provided by the SCTP used to identify an association.


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Once the association is established, M2PA invokes the GETSRTTREPORT
primitive to determine the Smooth Round Trip Time (SRTT) from SCTP. If
the SRTT exceeds its maximum allowed value (which is implementation
dependent), M2PA should use the ABORT primitive to end the
association.  If M2PA had received a Start Request from its MTP3, then
M2PA shall report to MTP3 that the link is out of service.

Once M2PA has received a Start Request from MTP3, the association is
established, the SRTT is determined to be satisfactory, and if MTP3
has not deactivated the link, then:

   (a) If there is no local processor outage condition, M2PA sends a
       Link Status of In Service to its peer.

   (b) If there is a local processor outage condition, M2PA sends Link
       Status Processor Outage to its peer. When MTP3 sends Local
       Processor Recovered, then M2PA sends Link Status Processor
       Outage Ended to its peer, followed by Link Status In Service.

If M2PA has not received a Link Status In Service from its peer at the
time it sends the Link Status In Service, M2PA starts timer T1. Timer
T1 is stopped when M2PA receives Link Status In Service from its
peer. If M2PA does not receive Link Status In Service from its peer
before T1 expires, then M2PA reports to MTP3 that the link is out of
service. Then M2PA uses the ABORT primitive to end the association.

Recommended value of T1 is 5-150 seconds.

Note that if the server M2PA has not received a Start Request from its
MTP3, it will not send the Link Status In Service message to the
client. Eventually the client will ABORT the association. The client
will then attempt to establish the association.

When the association is established, M2PA has sent Link Status In
Service to its peer, and has received Link Status In Service from its
peer, and there is no local processor outage condition, then M2PA
sends Link In Service to its MTP3.

If M2PA receives a Link Status of Processor Outage during alignment,
and M2PA had received a Start Request from its MTP3, M2PA shall report
Remote Processor Outage to MTP3.

M2PA shall ignore the Emergency and Emergency Ceases commands from
MTP3.

4.1.3 Processor Outage

A processor outage occurs when M2PA cannot transfer messages because
of a condition at a higher layer than M2PA.

When M2PA detects a local processor outage, it sends a Link Status
message to its peer with status Processor Outage. M2PA shall discard

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any User Data messages received. M2PA shall also cease sending User
Data messages to SCTP for transmission.

The peer M2PA, upon receiving the Link Status Processor Outage
message, shall report Remote Processor Outage to its MTP3. M2PA ceases
sending User Data messages.

When the processor outage ceases, MTP3 sends a Local Processor
Recovered indication to M2PA. The local M2PA notifies its peer by
sending a Link Status message with status Processor Outage Ended.  The
peer notifies its MTP3 that the remote processor outage has ceased.

4.1.4 Level 2 Flow Control

Notification of receive congestion from SCTP to M2PA is implementation
dependent. This section assumes that there is some form of receive
congestion notification from SCTP to M2PA.

If M2PA receives notification from its lower layer SCTP that SCTP is
in receive congestion for an association, M2PA shall send a Link
Status Busy message to its peer on that association.

When the peer M2PA receives the Link Status Busy message, it shall
cease transmitting User Data messages from its upper layer MTP3. (User
Data messages already given to the lower layer SCTP are transmitted as
the SCTP protocol allows.) M2PA shall start the Remote Congestion
timer T6. If timer T6 expires, M2PA shall use the ABORT primitive to
end the association and take the link out of service.

If M2PA receives notification from its lower layer SCTP that SCTP is
no longer in receive congestion for the association, M2PA shall send a
Link Status Busy Ended message to its peer on that association.

When the peer M2PA receives the Link Status Busy Ended message, it
shall stop timer T6 and resume transmitting User Data messages from
its upper layer MTP3.

Recommended value of T6 is 1-6 seconds.

4.1.5 Error Monitoring

If M2PA loses the SCTP association for a link, M2PA shall report to
MTP3 that the link is out of service.

4.1.6  Transmission Priorities

In MTP, Link Status messages have priority over User Data messages
([2] Q.703, section 11.2). To achieve this in M2PA, Link Status and
User Data messages shall be sent via SCTP on separate streams. All
messages are sent using the ordered delivery option.

M2PA should give higher priority to reading the Link Status stream

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over the User Data stream.

M2PA should give higher priority to receiving notifications from SCTP
over reading either the Link Status stream or the User Data stream.

Implementation Note: If the SCTP implementation allows streams to have
different priorities for sending messages, then M2PA should set the
Link Status stream to a higher priority than the User Data stream.


4.2 Procedures to Support the MTP3/MTP2 Interface

4.2.1  Sending/receiving messages

When MTP3 sends a message for transmission to M2PA, M2PA passes the
corresponding M2PA message to SCTP using the SEND primitive.

M2PA Link Status messages are passed to SCTP using the SEND primitive.

Link Status and User Data messages shall be sent via SCTP on separate
streams.

When M2PA receives a Data message from SCTP, M2PA passes the message
to MTP3.

4.2.2  Link activation and restoration

When MTP3 requests that M2PA activate or restore a link by a Start
Request, M2PA shall follow the alignment procedure in section 4.1.2.

4.2.3  Link deactivation

When MTP3 requests that M2PA deactivate a link by a Stop command, M2PA
shall send an ABORT primitive to SCTP.

4.2.4  Flush buffers

If M2PA receives a Flush Buffers command from MTP3, M2PA:

   (a) shall not transmit any messages to SCTP that are currently
       waiting to be transmitted to SCTP.
   (b) shall discard all messages currently waiting to be passed
       to MTP3.

4.2.5 MTP3 Signaling Link Congestion

Notification of transmit congestion from SCTP to its upper layer
(M2PA) is implementation dependent. Nevertheless, M2PA should receive
notification from SCTP adequate to allow MTP3 to meet its requirements
for signaling link transmit congestion in [2] Q.704, section 3.8.

M2PA shall notify its upper layer MTP3 when transmit buffer occupancy

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crosses the congestion onset, discard, and abatement thresholds. For
national networks with multiple congestion threshold levels, M2PA
shall notify MTP3 when transmit buffer occupancy crosses each level of
the congestion onset, discard, and abatement thresholds.

4.2.6 Changeover

The objective of the changeover is to ensure that signaling traffic
carried by the unavailable signaling link is diverted to the
alternative signaling link(s) as quickly as possible while avoiding
message loss, duplication, or mis-sequencing.  For this purpose, the
changeover procedure includes data retrieval, which is performed
before opening the alternative signaling links to the diverted
traffic.  Data retrieval consists of these steps:

   (1) buffer updating, i.e., identifying all those User Data
       messages in the retransmission buffer of the unavailable
       signaling link which have not been received by the far end
       SCTP, as well as untransmitted messages, and

   (2) transferring those messages to the transmission buffers of the
       alternate links.

Note that only User Data messages are retrieved and transmitted over
the alternate links. Link Status messages shall not be retrieved and
transmitted over the alternate links. References to stream sequence
numbers in this section refer only to the User Data stream's stream
sequence numbers.

In order to support changeover in M2PA, the SCTP Stream Sequence
Numbers must be used in place of the Forward and Backward Sequence
Numbers (FSN/BSN) of SS7.

Stream Sequence Numbers used by SCTP are 16 bits long.  MTP2's Forward
and Backward Sequence Numbers are only seven bits long.  Hence it is
necessary for MTP3 to accomodate the larger SSNs. This is done through
the use of the Extended Changeover Order (XCO) and Extended Changeover
Acknowledgement (XCA) messages instead of the Changeover Order (COO)
and Changeover Acknowledgement (COA) messages. The XCO and XCA
messages are specified in Reference [7] section 9.8.1. Only the XCO
and XCA messages from [7] are used. These messages have a 24-bit field
for the sequence number. The upper 8 bits of the 24 bit field should
be set to 0, and the SSN placed in the lower 16 bits.

(Note that the Stream Sequence Numbers are used instead of the
Transmission Sequence Numbers. The Transmission Sequence Numbers are
32 bits long, and therefore would not fit in the XCO and XCA
messages.)

For data retrieval, MTP3 requests Backward Sequence Number (BSN) from
M2PA.  This is the sequence number of the last message received by the
local end.  Normally, SCTP delivers ordered messages to the

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application.  However, during congestion or failure condition, the
sequence numbers of the acknowledged messages may have gaps.  In
particular, the SACK (selective acknowledgement message) message can
have several of these gaps.  Hence, it is important to scan through
these gaps and find the sequence number before the first gap.  This is
the number from which the remote end has to transmit the messages.  So
this is the number considered as the Backward Sequence Number and
communicated to the remote end.  In a similar way, the remote end also
detects the BSN and indicates to the local end. As soon as the MTP3 of
the local end receives this BSN, MTP3 retrieves all the unacknowledged
messages starting from BSN.  This is accomplished through a Retrieval
Request and FSNC request.  After all the messages are sent from M2PA
to MTP3, a Retrieval Complete indication is sent.

Note that the sequence numbers and messages requested by MTP3 may be
obtained by M2PA from SCTP via the Communication Lost primitive [5].
Retrieval of messages is an optional feature in SCTP. To perform data
retrieval, it is necessary that this option be implemented, and that
the SSNs of the messages are identified. SCTP must retain the messages
for retrieval by MTP3/M2PA whenever an association is aborted. SCTP
must be able to return messages to M2PA so that M2PA can perform
retrieval for MTP3. There are various ways that this can be
implemented, such as:

   (1) SCTP provides a way for M2PA to request retrieval of messages
       for a specified stream and SSN(s).

   (2) SCTP retrieves all messages and identifies the stream and SSN
       of each message. M2PA then must select the appropriate messages
       to pass up to MTP3.

If M2PA receives a Retrieve BSNT request from MTP3, M2PA responds with
the BSNT indication. The BSNT value is the SCTP stream sequence number
of the last message received by SCTP User Data stream before any gaps
in the stream sequence numbers.

(Note that any messages with stream sequence number greater than this
BSNT value have been acknowledged by the receiving SCTP, but have not
been passed up to M2PA. These messages are discarded by the receiving
SCTP and are not delivered to the upper layer M2PA. Therefore these
messages should be retransmitted by the far end on the alternate
link.)

If M2PA receives a Retrieval Request and FSNC request from MTP3, M2PA
retrieves from SCTP:

       (a) any transmitted messages beginning with the first
           unacknowledged message with stream sequence number greater
           than FSNC, and

       (b) any untransmitted messages in SCTP.


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Each of these messages is sent to MTP3, first (a), then (b). Then M2PA
sends the Retrieval Complete indication to MTP3.

Note: The changeover procedure makes it impossible for M2PA to have
multiple User Data streams in a direction for one link. Buffer
updating would have to be done for each User Data stream separately to
avoid duplication of messages. But MTP3 provides for only one XCO
message for sending the last-received SSN.


5.  Examples of M2PA Procedures

In general, messages passed between MTP3 and M2PA are the same as
those passed between MTP3 and MTP2.  M2PA interprets messages from
MTP3 and sends the appropriate message to SCTP. Likewise, messages
from SCTP are used to generate a meaningful message to MTP3.

Note that throughout this section, the primitives between MTP3 and
M2PA are named using the MTP terminology [1][2]. Communications
between M2PA and SCTP are named using SCTP terminology.


5.1  Link Initialization (Alignment)

An example of the message flow to bring an SS7 link in service is
shown below. Alignment is done by both ends of the link. To simplify the
diagram, alignment is shown on one end only. It is assumed in this
example that SCTP has been initialized.

























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    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

     Out of Service
     <------------

     Emergency OR
     Emergency Ceases
     ------------>

     Start
     ------------>

                 Associate
                 ------------>

                             (SCTP Association
                              procedure)

                 Communication Up        Communication Up
                 <------------           ------------>


Even though the SCTP association is established, it is important that
M2PA not send MTP3 data at this point. It must be confirmed that both
ends of the link are ready for traffic. Otherwise, messages could be
lost. The endpoints must exchange In Service messages.


    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

                 Get SRTT Report
                 ------------>

                 Link Status In Service
                 ------------------------------------>

                                Link Status In Service
                 <------------------------------------

     In Service                                      In Service
     <------------                                   ------------>


At this point, MTP3 may begin sending data messages.







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5.2  Message Transmission and Reception

Messages are transmitted using the Data Request primitive from MTP3 to
M2PA. The diagram shows the case where the Link is In Service. The
message is passed from MTP3 of the source to MTP3 of the destination.


    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

     Message for
     transmission
     ------------>

                 Send
                 (Data Message)
                 ------------>

                             (SCTP sends message)

                                         Receive
                                         ------------>

                                                  Received message
                                                     ------------>


5.3  Link Status Indication

If SCTP sends a Communication Lost primitive to M2PA, M2PA notifies
MTP3 that the link is out of service. MTP3 responds in its usual way.


    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

                 Communication Lost
                 <------------

     Out of Service
     <------------












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5.4  Link Status Message (Processor Outage)

This example shows how M2PA responds to a local processor outage. M2PA
sends a Link Status message to its peer. The peer M2PA notifies MTP3
of the outage. MTP3 can then follow the processor outage procedures in
[2].


    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

             M2PA detects
             Local Processor
             Outage

                 Link Status
                 Processor Outage
                 ------------>

                             (SCTP sends message)

                                         Receive
                                         ------------>

                                                  Remote Processor
                                                  Outage
                                                     ------------>

                 Link Status
                 Processor Outage
                 Ended
                 ------------>

                             (SCTP sends message)

                                         Receive
                                         ------------>

                                                  Remote Processor
                                                  Outage Ceases
                                                     ------------>












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5.5  Congestion Notification to Upper layer

MTP3 expects notification of link congestion. In this example, it is
assumed that SCTP notifies M2PA of congestion onset and abatement. The
notification includes the congestion level, if there are levels of
congestion defined.


    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

                 Implementation dependent
                 indication of congestion
                 onset (level)
                 <------------

     Congestion Indication
     (level)
     <------------

                 Implementation dependent
                 indication of congestion
                 abatement (level)
                 <------------

     Congestion Indication
     (level)
     <------------

























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5.6  Link Deactivation

The MTP3 can request that a SS7-IP link be taken out-of-service. M2PA
uses the Abort message as shown below.


    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

     Stop
     ------------>

                 Abort
                 ------------>

                           (SCTP performs its
                           termination procedure)

                 Communication Lost
                 <------------

     Out of Service
     <------------






























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5.7  Link Changeover

In this example, MTP3 performs a changeover because the link went out
of service. MTP3 selects a different link for retransmitting the
unacknowledged messages.

Note that in this example, the sequence numbers and messages requested
by MTP3 are sent from SCTP to M2PA in the Communication Lost
primitive. In general, the retrieval of sequence numbers and messages
is implementation dependent.











































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    MTP3        M2PA        SCTP        SCTP        M2PA        MTP3
    ----        ----        ----        ----        ----        ----

                 Communication Lost
                 <------------

     Out of Service
     <------------

     Retrieve BSN
     ------------>

                 (M2PA locates
                  first gap in
                  received messages)

     Indicate BSN
     <------------

     XCO (BSN) on another link
     ------------------------------------------------------------>

                                                      Retrieve BSN
                                                     <------------

                                                      Indicate BSN
                                                     ------------>

                                                         XCA (BSN)
     <------------------------------------------------------------

     Retrieval Request
     and FSNC (FSNC =
     BSN from XCA message)
     ------------>

                 (M2PA locates
                  first gap in
                  acknowledgements)

     Retrieved Message
     <------------

     Retrieved Message
     <------------

     Retrieval Complete
     <------------

     Send messages on another link.


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6. Security

SCN adaptation layers rely on SCTP to provide security.


7.  IANA Considerations

The SCTP (and UDP/TCP) Registered User Port Number Assignment for M2PA
is TBD.

The value assigned by IANA for the Payload Protocol Identifier in the
SCTP Payload Data chunk is

        M2PA     TBD

The SCTP Payload Protocol Identifier is included in each SCTP Data
chunk, to indicate which protocol the SCTP is carrying. This Payload
Protocol Identifier is not directly used by SCTP but may be used by
certain network entities to identify the type of information being
carried in a Data chunk.

The User Adaptation peer may use the Payload Protocol Identifier as a
way of determining additional information about the data being
presented to it by SCTP.

8.  Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank Brian Tatum and Ian Rytina for their
valuable comments and suggestions.
























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9.  References

[1] ITU-T Recommendation Q.700, 'Introduction To ITU-T Signalling
    System No. 7 (SS7)'

[2] ITU-T Recommendation Q.701-Q.705, 'Signalling System No. 7
    (SS7) - Message Transfer Part (MTP)'

[3] Bellcore GR-246-CORE 'Bell Communications Research Specification
    of Signaling System Number 7', Volume 1, December 1995

[4] RFC 2719, Framework Architecture for Signaling Transport,
    October 1999

[5] RFC 2960, Stream Control Transmission Protocol,
    October 2000

[6] SS7 MTP2-User Adaptation Layer, draft-ietf-sigtran-m2ua-05.txt,
    November 2000

[7] ITU-T Recommendation Q.2210, 'Message transfer part level 3
    functions and messages using the services of ITU-T
    Recommendation Q.2140'

[8] Bradner, S. "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate Requirement
    Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

[9] Telecommunication Technology Committee (TTC) Standard JT-Q704,
    'Message Transfer Part Signaling Network Functions',
    April 28, 1992.























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10.  Author's Addresses

Tom George                                        Tel: +1-972-519-3168
Alcatel USA                          EMail: tom.george@usa.alcatel.com
1000 Coit Road
Plano, TX 75075
USA

Ram Dantu, Ph.D.                    Tel: +1-972-234-6070 extension 211
IPmobile                                    EMail: rdantu@ipmobile.com
1651 North Glenville, Suite 216
Richardson, TX 75081
USA

Malleswar Kalla                                   Tel: +1-973-829-5212
Telcordia Technologies             EMail: kalla@research.telcordia.com
MCC 1J211R
445 South Street
Morristown, NJ 07960
USA

Hanns Juergen Schwarzbauer                       Tel: +49-89-722-24236
SIEMENS AG                    HannsJuergen.Schwarzbauer@icn.siemens.de
Hofmannstr. 51
81359 Munich
Germany

Greg Sidebottom                                   Tel: +1-613-763-7305
Nortel Networks                     EMail: gregside@nortelnetworks.com
3685 Richmond Rd,
Nepean, Ontario
Canada  K2H5B7

Ken Morneault                                     Tel: +1-703-484-3323
Cisco Systems Inc.                           EMail: kmorneau@cisco.com
13615 Dulles Technology Drive
Herndon, VA. 20171
USA


This Internet Draft expires May 2001.












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