Often times when deploying network monitoring probes they are passive devices tapped into the network using port spans, also known as port mirroring. Since the Acme Packet SBC is acting as a SIP b2bua and sees all SIP traffic it also has the ability to act as a probe without the need for port spans or mirroring.

Using IPFIX (IP Flow Information Export) the SBC will provide real-time statistics to the Oracle Communications Operations Monitor (formerly Palladion) Mediation Engine. The ME is able to provide real-time SIP ladder diagrams, call correlation, detect one-way RTP audio streams, provide alerting (fraud detection, call failures, emergency 911), display SBC configs, report on degraded MOS and RFactor scores, as well as show devices performing SIP Registration through the SBC and their associated endpoint make, model, and firmware information.

Currently Operations Monitor is the only platform I am aware of that can perform all of this real-time with no delay or lag. SIP ladder diagrams will display and continue to refresh in real-time whether a call is in progress or mid-call with intermediary dialog taking place.

All traffic traversing through the SBC north and southbound is reported using IPFIX 

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The network-interface configuration element on the SBC determines which interface is used to send the IPFIX Export Data to the Mediation Engine. In most cases it will be the Management interface although it could be a slot0 or slot1 interface if desired.
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Oracle Operations Monitor’s Mediation Engine supports an interactive multi-tenant web interface using HTML 5.

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While the SBC is sending IPFIX Export Data the Operations Monitor platform will display SIP ladder diagrams on a per call basis showing a correlated call flow in real-time. 

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Hover the mouse over a SIP message for more detail

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Left click to lock multiple floating windows in place for additional visibility into multiple messages at the same time

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Use the View option for more details such as CODEC, IP address, DTMF Events

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View MOS scores in 10 second intervals for active calls for Called and Calling directions

MOS

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Additional voice quality details are provided for each hop where media is anchored
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SIP segments within a single call are broken down with additional details.

Note the PCAP export button for Wireshark compatibility (and PDF export)

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See which Remote Workers or Hosted IP PBX endpoints are registering SIP through the SBC

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Call correlation with five SIP hops 
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View all calls traversing the network or call through a specific named “device” (SBC, IP PBX, Softswitch, Gateway, SIP Proxy, etc.)

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Example of creating a new Alert when voice quality degrades

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Create custom “apps” 

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Use 200+ different Key Performance Indicators (KPI) or make custom KPI’s

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Track calls by specific user

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Create unique captures per user or device (SBC, Gateway, Softswitch, PBX)

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To create a unique capture filter enter a telephone number or IP address. 

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View trending voice quality metrics for the entire network. Notice there are some problematic RTP streams

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Click on the red and see what device are in the RTP path effecting the MOS score

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  1. Randy Cheske says:

    Nice summary Mark. I’ve been using OCOM for a couple of years now. It’s nice to have another tool that I can use in addition to the CA and Observer tools we have. But I’m curious now about the APPs section and how to develop some custom monitoring. Where can I find more information about that, or if there is even a app developers forum to share ideas?
    ~ Randy

  2. Stephen Goodman says:

    I have updated my SBCs to ECZ7.3.0m1p1 and i dont see the comm-monitor or monitor-collector options in my config. Where is this information present?

    If i dont have Operations manager can i still send IPFIX data to another place and get details of calls, knowing that it might not be real time?

  3. Mark says:

    Did you try the following?

    ACMEPACKET# configure terminal
    ACMEPACKET(configure)# system
    ACMEPACKET(system)# system-config
    ACMEPACKET(system-config)# comm-monitor

  4. Mark says:

    If you are experienced with Python scripting you can create some custom apps. I haven’t looked at the docs in a while but I believe there a guide for this. http://docs.oracle.com/en/industries/communications/

    I’m not aware of any developers but the is an Oracle Forum specifically for OCOM that is very helpful.

  5. Rory McDonald says:

    Hi, can the be Operations Monitor run on SMX version 6.x ?
    Also trying to get more than just the basic info to go to a SNMP server. What has to be in place?
    Thanks

  6. EJ says:

    Great Reads,
    I have question was looking a for a guidance.

    Is there a way to sent RTP media also to Oracle Communications Operations Monitor from SBC along with sip signaling ?
    Thank you