USR TCH, RadiusNT, Emerlad, Dial-On-Demand, Etc.

Sergio Manzi ( )
Thu, 17 Jul 1997 10:34:07 +0200

Good day to everybody!

A couple of years ago I've set up an ISP company for which I'm now acting
as a consultant.

At that time I decided to use US-Robotics TCH (with NMC) hooked to the
telco via POTS and to cisco 2511 access routers via RS-232 NICs.

The rationale was to have the best and more flexible solution available at
that time and I think we made the right move: everything has worked
perfectly until now.

Now, with increasing demand for ISDN access, we've set up another (parallel
to the first one) access network based on cisco 2511 and ZyXel 2864-I T.A.

The first network is using cisco proprietary (Tacacs) authentication
method, while the new one uses Radius (RadiusNT server). This new access
network has some problems: the ZyXel T.A. sometimes got stuck and don't
answer ISDN calls anymore (they do answer V.34 calls anyway, strange
enough...). Power cycling needed to reset, ATZ doesn't work.

This two-faced access networks is anyway causing (obviously!) management
problems and I'm about to propose to merge the two.

What I would like to do is to get rid of the 2511s and the ZyXel, buy
Netserver and PRI cards for the TCH, move to Radius as the authentication
and accounting protocol using Emerald (from IEA) to manage the accounts.

Anyway there are a couple of questions which I must answer to myself before
taking this decision and here I am seeking help from my fellow colleagues
on the net:

Question N.1:
One of the service we are offering is Dial-On-Demand from the network. When
an IP calls arrives for customers who have subscribed this service our 2511
places a call to the customer set up a PPP connection to them and activate
routing to their subnet (possibly applying IP filters). It is unclear to me
if such functionality would be available using the USR NetServer card
instead of the cisco 2511.

Question N.2:
Will I be able to differentiate ISDN from V.34 calls and allow or not
access based on the customer profile?

Question N.3:
Will I be able to upgrade my two years old Quad Analog/Digital cards (don't
have Rev. at hand right now but could provide if needed) to the latest TCS
or they will need hardware upgrades?

Question N.4:
Will I still need the NMC cards or will SNMP management be handled by the
NetServer cards?

Question N.5:
There isn't one right now but if I'm missing (or messing) something I would
really apreciate any comment.

This mail has been cross-posted to the RadiusNT and usr-tc mailing lists.

Many thanks in advance to everybody.

Sergio Manzi

Internet Consultant
Phone: +39 (335) 6368427