12 February 2013

See You in Barcelona



OpenBTS is the only open source implementation of the 3GPP GSM/GPRS and UMTS radio access network (RAN). Yate's SS7 stack is the only open source core network solution certified by Deutsche Telekom's test lab. That's a powerful combination and that's why Range Networks and SS7Ware (the new US office of Null Team) have started a development partnership to provide full cellular networks based on their products.

One exciting result of this US-European collaboration is a unified SIP-based network that supports 2.5G GSM/GPRS, 3G UMTS and 4G LTE RANs all on the same core, simplifying the network architecture and providing a higher return on investment. The Range-SS7Ware open source approach also answers concerns over the security of RAN and core network systems by allowing network operators to inspect the source code of their network software. This combination of open standards and open source gives operators tremendous flexibility in the development of new services and represents a new vision in the deployment of cellular networks.

Range and SS7Ware will be in Barcelona together later this month for the Mobile World Congress. If you would like to meet with them please contact
info @ rangenetworks.com.

10 comments:

  1. "OpenBTS is the only open source implementation of the 3GPP GSM/GPRS and UMTS radio access network (RAN)."

    Well, the UMTS part isn't opensource AFAIK :p

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    1. AFAYK:p We offer source code licenses to paying customers. "Open source" != "public release".

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  2. Fair enough _but_ "giving out a source license" is also != "open source".

    Is the source code license you give to your customer an OSI approved license (which is the de-facto criteria to be called "open source") ? If it is, great ! But if it's not, I think the "open source" qualifier here is deceptive.

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    1. Sylvain -

      You raise a fair point. Most of the components of the commercial release, including those components not released publicly, are distributed under GPLv2. The remaining components of the commercial source distribution are available under multiple licenses, including some OSI licenses, as per customer needs.

      -- David

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  3. Meh, damn comment system on on blogger is messing up again with my account.

    Sylvain

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  4. "Yate's SS7 stack is the only open source core network solution certified by Deutsche Telekom's test lab"

    great. the free software community would love to assist you in your endeavours. please provide a URL to the source code tarball, which of course contains an OSI-approved free software license, and has no download restrictions as is required by that same OSI-approved free software license.

    once you have done this it will then be possible to assist you in promoting your company and the work that you are doing.

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    1. lkcl -

      I can't speak for SS7Ware and Null Team. I can say that in the case of Range Networks, we determined that the risks associated with a full public release of all of our features features outweigh the potential benefits. And I know several people who have tried to build businesses on "free" software who have arrived at similar conclusions.

      However, your comment touches on important topics, like the use of OSI licenses in a business plan, public release versus commercial open source, and the theory of community versus the reality of community in a commercial software product. That's all good fodder for another blog post.

      -- David

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    2. I as an hobbyist that loves playing with mobile communications really would appreciate at least basic UMTS and LTE functionality on freely availabe open source code that at least compiles and works and has some minimum support from the community, like OpenBTS 2.8 public release.

      This stuff really has potential to change the world of mobile communicatin completely! The big players already do the steps towards full SDR, SingleRAN instead of hierarchical top-to-down structure, ethernet instead of ATM, VoIP instead of circuit switched...

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  5. Wow I really didn't expect you guys to start down this slippery slope. Much of what you are saying is nonsense that only passes because "open source" doesn't actually have any legal definition.

    Under the right OSI licenses (such as GPLv2) it is technically possible to withhold code from anyone but paying customers; however, in such a model a company is required to make the code available for everyone to whom they distribute a binary and would generally not support the concept of an additional "source license."

    The only method to support such a scheme is if the code is very carefully dual (or more) licensed. I would point out that any customer receiving such code or binaries under any OSI-approved license that I know of would be entirely free to distribute the code publicly, so maybe that is what it will take here?

    In any case, a company looking at these products to build out a network would be foolish not have a very very good contract and IP lawyer examine the situation because it sounds like it could be very hairy.

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