News Release

Norlight Deploys Cisco IP+ATM Network for Cost-Effective Delivery of Advanced IP Services

Norlight Receives Cisco Powered Network Designation for Value-added Data and Voice Services
Sep 25, 2000

BROOKFIELD, WI. - September 25, 2000 -- Norlight Telecommunications, Inc., a leading regional provider of integrated communications services, today announced that it is building a robust, fault-tolerant IP+ATM network backbone using industry-leading technology and solutions from Cisco Systems, Inc. The next-generation infrastructure will provide carrier-class reliability, scalability and quality of service (QoS), enabling Norlight to meet its business customers' growing demand for highly-advanced, bandwidth intensive, value-added data and voice services. Norlight's frame relay, ATM, and IP services will be based on an end-to-end Cisco infrastructure and have therefore received the Cisco Powered Network designation.

Norlight expects to offer services over the new network by year's end, following the first phase of deployment of Cisco MGX 8850 and Cisco BPX. 8650 IP+ATM wide-area switches throughout its network. Utilizing MPLS (MultiProtocol Label Switching), a standard pioneered by Cisco, Cisco's IP+ATM multiservice switches offer the complete range of Cisco IOS IP services over today's transport connections such as ATM, frame relay and private lines. Cisco's unique solution combines MPLS with industry-standard routing protocols to provide a foundation for the delivery of value-added services. The high scalability of these platforms will enable Norlight to keep up with the bandwidth needs of its business and regional ISP customers and to take advantage of new revenue-generating services such as voice over IP (VoIP), virtual private networks (VPNs) and other managed services.

"Cisco was the clear choice for making this evolution from frame relay services to a New World IP-enabled network," said Mike Ulicki, vice president and CTO for Norlight Telecommunications. "Cisco's technology lets Norlight roll out IP services based on the MPLS standard with unprecedented time to market. And, as our customers continue to demand applications that require greater increments of bandwidth, Cisco's platforms enable us to cost-effectively scale to meet that demand without continuous infrastructure investment."


The award-winning Cisco MGX 8850 wide-area IP+ATM switch will aggregate Norlight's IP and frame relay traffic for the Cisco BPX switches, enabling Norlight to run IP, ATM, and frame relay at port speeds ranging from 64 kbps to OC-48 over a single, integrated network. The Cisco BPX 8650 wide-area MPLS switch is the first ATM WAN switch in production with a carrier-class implementation of MPLS. Cisco's implementation is unique in its ability to IP-enable access services, delivering any-to-any connectivity directly over frame relay, ATM and other transport services.

"Norlight understands the competitive advantages of building a New World network around a Cisco IP+ATM foundation," said Rob Redford, director of marketing for the Cisco Multiservice Switching Business Unit. "The IP capabilities of this new network will enable Norlight to design and deliver value-added, managed services that go beyond basic transport services, cater specifically to their customers' needs and pave the way to new revenue and growth for Norlight."

The Cisco Powered Network designation signals to Norlight's customers that Norlight is delivering its advanced IP services over reliable, high-performance and secure Cisco networking infrastructure. As a Cisco Powered Network member, Norlight will participate in joint marketing and technology sharing activities with Cisco.