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Mechanism to Translate Addresses and Dispatch Services in a Radio Network Control Server Cluster.

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000010925D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Jan-31
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jan-31
Document File: 5 page(s) / 107K

Publishing Venue

Motorola

Related People

Anthony W. Sokol: INVENTOR [+3]

Abstract

One architecture for a Base Station Controller (BSC) in a wireless infrastructure network involves the use of smaller servers which, when pooled, can act as a resource pool for providing signaling services to mobile subscribers. The BSC server is one type of an application server in an Internet Protocol (IP) signaling framework. Signaling messages from a Signaling System 7 (SS7) network may undergo a protocol and address translation in a gateway to access one of the available servers in the BSC Server Pool. Proposed standards suggest the use of a load distribution function between the gateway and one of a set of application servers. The load distribution function discussed usually is based on static associations known at the gateway when the application servers in the IP domain register their ability to accept service requests. The registration and load distribution functions do not necessarily consider the capacity of each registered server nor it’s availability to provide service when requested. This publication describes a mechanism by which the gateway can monitor the server’s availability and capacity in a dynamic manner so that service requests are directed to the appropriate servers in a pool.

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Mechanism to Dispatch Services in a Base Station Controller Server Cluster

Anthony Sokol

Joe Marino, Jr.

Tom Schlangen

I.                   Introduction

One architecture for a Base Station Controller (BSC) in a wireless infrastructure network involves the use of smaller servers which, when pooled, can act as a resource pool for providing signaling services to mobile subscribers. The BSC server is one type of an application server in an Internet Protocol (IP) signaling framework. Signaling messages from a Signaling System 7 (SS7) network may undergo a protocol and address translation in a gateway to access one of the available servers in the BSC Server Pool. Proposed standards suggest the use of a load distribution function between the gateway and one of a set of application servers. The load distribution function discussed usually is based on static associations known at the gateway when the application servers in the IP domain register their ability to accept service requests. The registration and load distribution functions do not necessarily consider the capacity of each registered server nor it’s availability to provide service when requested. This publication describes a mechanism by which the gateway can monitor the server’s availability and capacity in a dynamic manner so that service requests are directed to the appropriate servers in a pool.

II.                Description

Figure 1 shows an architecture where the Mobile Switching Center (MSC) requests signaling services from a BSC via an SS7 Gateway (SS7 GW).  The BSC is composed of a cluster of servers, any of which could offer all or some of the services expected of a BSC.  The SS7 GW provides an address translation, protocol conversion and interworking between the SS7 based MSCs and the IP based BSC server cluster. The SS7 GW will build internal data tables showing for each subset of SS7 addresses and service offerings , which BSC server would be capable of accepting the service request.

Figure 2 shows an example signaling flow where a BSC server registers with the SS7 GW for all or a subset of services and the range of SS7 addresses the server will support.

Periodically each BSC server will send the SS7 GW a heartbeat message informing the gateway the server is available for requests, it’s current load capacity, and total available capacity, for each service type the server will support. The period between each notification is configured such that there is minimal loss of service requests in the system that could occur when one BSC server becomes disabled without detection at the SS7 GW. With the information updates, the SS7 GW may determine the current load and available capacity on a per service type, per SS7 address and per server basis for each BSC Server.  The SS7 GW wi...