Network architectures whose resources are open to control by user applications require the design of a service platform that performs resource virtualization and service abstraction. While a few commercial architectures for packet networks already exist, service platforms for connection-oriented networks (e.g., optical) are currently under investigation. After introducing the service concept in the optical network scenario, the paper proposes and experimentally validates a service platform for application-driven resource management in a GMPLS-controlled optical network. Specifically, upon a service request issued by an application, the proposed service platform performs admission control and enforces proper traffic policies to ensure the quality of service (QoS) required by the application data flow. This enables QoS control on a per-application basis while preserving scalability and timing of application signaling. The experimental results show that service setup is realized in a time of the order of a few seconds. Scalability remarks show that this order of magnitude can also be guaranteed for networks of larger size.
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