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Re: [HSSG] Reach Objectives

We clearly have a problem at 10G that certain players have taken Ethernet to be more than a packet network:
- We have the situation that people have put information in parts of the frame not designed for carrying information (the preamble and IPG).
- We have the problem that some customers think that the entire frame format, not just the payload is sacred and must not be touched (some of this stems from the first problem, other parts of this problem are perception).
I think that it is worth some effort and careful though to make sure that this does not happen as we define interfaces for the next rate, e.g., that we keep it simple, and keep it as a (pure) packet network.
I think that there are two possible approaches:
- We could make sure that we define ONE frame format and data rate that works in all contexts This is starting to sound doubtful from the opinions expressed, but if we COULD achieve a single specification and ensure that anything that transits one medium would transit another, we could avoid these kinds of problems.
- I touched on this in the last email, but we could produce a repeater spec covering all interfaces and frame formats, e.g., if you have phsycial interfaces/frame formats X and Y, the repeater spec tells you enough that you could to build X<->X, Y<->Y and X<->Y repeaters and only what we consider to be the essential or characteristic information (the payload) would transit the repeater. We could indicate that any server layer network should meet the requirements for a repeater. Doing this might discourage inappropriate use of the frame format to implement proprietary things that would break if you put a standard repeater between the boxes.

From: Geoff Thompson [mailto:gthompso@xxxxxxxxxx]
Sent: Sunday, September 03, 2006 8:47 PM
To: Trowbridge, Stephen J (Steve)
Cc: STDS-802-3-HSSG@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [HSSG] Reach Objectives

At 03:46 PM 9/3/2006 , Trowbridge, Stephen J (Steve) wrote:
If only it were so simple ...

It is.

Ethernet is a packet network, not a bit or circuit network.