A VoIP equipment manufacturer needed to provide as part of its centralized management solution, an application that would allow end-user customer of the service provider to configure the services that they had signed up with the service provider. The end-user customers of the service provider would be interacting with the management system of the VOIP manufacturer through a web based application developed by the service provider.
This meant that the configuration data that was sent by the end-user had to be verified and stored in the network manager for authentication, billing and other management purposes while at the same time it had to be also passed on to the network devices for service activation. Another major constraint for the management system was that the interface should be flexible so that it could be easily integrated with service provider systems. The final constraint was that for various reasons, the embedded agent software on the device could not be customized.
This requirement was implemented using NetConf based configuration which was based on Web services and SOAP. A software based XML/SNMP gateway was developed and made to co-exist with the Element Management System. These two systems together provided the necessary authentication, data storage and retrieval as well as logging of end-user activities. The data sent by the end-user would reach the gateway as XML messages over HTTP link and the gateway notified the management system and finally the device was also updated with the same configuration information over SNMP.
This allowed the end-users to directly change their service subscriptions and/or activations. Since the application was fully integrated with the existing management system, all the requisite information that was required for service management and billing was captured. The challenges that were encountered when implementing the above solution will be explored in the next newsletter. Stay tuned!