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Introduction

NT HLR Front End 16.0 > Technical Description

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Today’s traditional home location register (HLR)/authentication center (AuC) applications are based on stand-alone deployments (see Figure: Comparison of HLR stand-alone and separated database architecture). In such a configuration HLR/AuC application logic and the concerned mobile subscriber data reside on the same physical machine. Moreover, each HLR/AuC has its own provisioning and management interfaces. Scaling of HLR/AuC capacity in the network is achieved by deploying several HLR/AuC network elements serving different segments of mobile subscribers.

With the growing numbers of mobile subscribers and due to the rapid service innovation cycles, the simplified and centralized organization of data in mobile networks becomes a focus in reducing operational and capital expenditure (OPEX, CAPEX). This is driven by the need for easier data consolidation, flexible interaction between existing and new services and openness for emerging services. The separation between application logic and application data is a crucial prerequisite for centralized data organization. With the availability of faster server hardware, network connections and high performance databases the realization of a common database/directory hosting the data of several applications becomes technically feasible. The data will be accessed using standard protocols (for example, lightweight directory access protocol = LDAP).

Figure:

Comparison of HLR stand-alone and separated database architecture

Introduction

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Introducing a separate common database/directory that also

Introducing a separate common database/directory that also hosts HLR/AuC data, results in a dramatic simplification of the system architecture and enables the deployment of HLR/AuC application clients (see Figure: Comparison of HLR stand-alone and separated database architecture) which only contain the application logic and no application data.

The new technology HLR (NT HLR) of the Nokia HLR uses an innovative separated database architecture. It is based on the concept of separating application logic and application data. NT HLR uses a subscriber repository that stores centralized HLR and AuC data. The combined HLR/AuC client logic is implemented in a suitable number of NT HLR Front Ends (FEs). The number of NT HLR FEs used in a network depends on how many mobile subscribers are handled in the network. NT HLR FEs are each not bound to a certain segment or group of mobile subscribers, but handle the mobile subscriber traffic on a load-sharing basis. NT HLR FEs can easily be extended, and dynamic as well as static capacity can be independently scaled. A detailed description of NT HLR FE architecture and its functions as well as a summary of the complete NT HLR FE architecture and functions is given in chapter Architecture. The features of NT HLR FE are described in chapter System Features. Nokia typically deploys the AuC together with the HLR on an NT HLR FE for performance and efficiency reasons.

The subject of this technical description is NT HLR FE. NT HLR FE network element, with its integrated HLR and AuC applications, is implemented in the Nokia system NT HLR FE. For further information regarding the subscriber repository, refer to the corresponding technical description.

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