Microsoft and Vertel Demonstrate Telecommunications Management Network (TMN) Compliance for Windows NT Server at SUPERCOMM ’97

NEW ORLEANS, June 3, 1997 — Microsoft Corp. and Vertel, a leading supplier of telecommunications management network (TMN) products, demonstrated software at SUPERCOMM ’97 that helps to enable TMN-compliant management of Microsoft® and third-party applications running on the Windows NT® Server network operating system. This demonstration realizes development goals announced by Vertel and Microsoft at the TMN Global Summit in February. These goals include the ability to manage the Microsoft Commercial Internet System through industry-standard TMN management systems and to enable network and service management from Web-based systems.

Microsoft is providing support to Vertel for its development of TMN-compliant network and service management applications on Windows NT Server, as well as Vertel CMIP/CMISE software for Windows NT Server that complies with the TMN standard. Vertel is integrating its TMN PowerCat platforms with Windows NT Server technology to provide telecommunications customers with open, Internet-based management solutions that build on TMN standards.

The collaboration between Microsoft and Vertel is a critical component of the Microsoft strategy to provide platforms and products that deliver and manage telecommunications services based on Windows NT Server and ISV applications. The co-developed TMN products are scheduled to be introduced in 1997.

“We recognize the growing significance of TMN to telecommunications service providers in this era of deregulation and heightened competition,”
said Bill Anderson, director of telecom industry marketing at Microsoft.

Microsoft is working with Vertel to help to ensure that our technology meets these telecom requirements. We are focused on facilitating TMN compliance for carriers that are building enhanced services on our platform technology, including Windows NT Server, Microsoft Internet Information Server, Microsoft Commercial Internet System and the Microsoft BackOffice
™family of products. This will help carriers improve service-management process flows and preserve their investments in existing network management infrastructure.”

“This initiative to integrate TMN technology allows operators to leverage the price/performance of Windows NT Server-based solutions that have a user-friendly interface with lower administration and training costs,”
said Bobby Martyna, executive vice president for Vertel.
“Carriers will be able to provide industrial-strength Internet services in addition to access to distributed business applications across Windows NT and other platforms managed in a TMN domain.”

Telecommunications service providers are standardizing on TMN to rapidly satisfy the demand for a large variety of new services as well as to integrate their complex networks. The TMN architecture, based on a five-layer model defined by the International Telecommunications Union, specifies the standard interaction methodology between telecommunications equipment and operations-support systems.

Most TMN development work to date has focused on the lower three levels that are concerned with establishing physical links among interoperating hardware and gathering the information needed by the upper two levels that provide services to users. These two upper layers, called the Service Management Layer and the Business Management Layer, are the focus for the products and technologies being introduced.

Service Management Layer

At the Service Management Layer, customers gain access to certain network-management activities – a process known as customer network management (CNM). CNM enhances customers’ ability to tailor the network’s characteristics to their needs by selecting applications such as trouble reporting, performance monitoring, access ordering (e.g., new circuits) and service provisioning (e.g., videoconference setup). This is also the layer in which mediated access between carriers’ operations-support systems will continue to develop.

Business Management Layer

The Business Management Layer furnishes applications across the enterprise, such as budgeting, goal setting and product planning. The tools used at this level include PC business application suites typified by Microsoft Office. Currently, data is usually imported into spreadsheets or database applications from network reports. Typically, this data is historical information that is imported manually. Business Management Layer applications will become immensely powerful if they can be linked in real time into the information and process flows in a TMN system.

Vertel, a wholly owned subsidiary of Retix (NASDAQ
), focuses on the VERtical integration of TELecommunications software for specific TMN users. The company provides advanced telecommunications management solutions including communications infrastructure products, network management platforms, and applications software for telecommunication carrier networks worldwide. In addition, Vertel serves telecom equipment manufacturers, computer systems OEMs and Internet access providers. The company is based in

Woodland Hills, Calif., with research and development facilities in Dublin, Ireland, and sales offices throughout the world. Contact Vertel on the World Wide Web at (

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, Windows NT and BackOffice are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

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