Cisco automates QoS

Deploying and managing quality of service (QoS) on Internet Protocol (IP) networks has just become simpler according to Cisco Systems Inc., which released the first in a series of new tools Monday, that automate QoS implementations for LANs and WANs.

The San Jose-based company announced Cisco AutoQoS, a solution that automates network QoS or packet prioritization and delivery on IP networks.

QoS has become a major issue in the enterprise with the addition of voice and video travelling over IP-based data networks. While IP nets were not originally designed to handle continuous speech or video transmissions, voice and data information has since been converted into packets that travel across the network at different times. QoS ensures that these packets arrive in the correct order at the correct time.

In order to eliminate some of the complexity associated with QoS implementations, Cisco’s AutoQoS automatically configures a router or switch with proper QoS settings to ensure IP traffic is delivered according to service level agreements. With the increased automation, AutoQoS makes the chance of misconfiguration less likely and reduces the cost of traditional QoS deployments on LANs and WANs. This means that enterprise and service provider customers who must guarantee QoS as part of managed services offerings can now do so easily, the company explained.

In addition to its solo capabilities, AutoQoS, with the help of CiscoWorks QoS Policy Manager – a centralized management tool that monitors IP traffic and configures QoS policies across a network – can automate some elements of QoS deployment by classifying applications, generating policies, configuring devices, monitoring and reporting, and can also increase network uptime by reducing configuration errors.

The new solution is available now across multiple platforms including new versions of Cisco IOS as well as Catalyst OS for Cisco Catalyst 6500, 2950 and 3550 switches. The software is free to existing Cisco IOS customers.

Also on the market as of Monday is the Cisco IP Communications (IPC) program for midmarket companies looking to deploy a converged voice, video and data IP network. As part of the program, the company announced new features for its ICS 7750, an IP private branch exchange (PBX) chassis-based system, which implements integrated voice gateway routing and call processing.

The ICS 7750 also supports integrated Cisco Unity Unified Messaging 4.0, software that enables users to manage voicemail, e-mail and fax functions from a single device.

For simple migration to a converged network, the ICS 7750 incorporates enhanced voice packages that enable midmarket businesses to roll out a small-site IPC system.

Cisco has also specially priced its IP Phone 7905G to make adoption more appealing to smaller companies, and has added the ICS 7750 Installation and Configuration Remote Lab and e-learning course to the existing set of IPC tools. The Web-based course offers training on the configuration, installation and maintenance of the ICS 7750.

The company added that its midmarket customers are looking for advanced IP solutions as well as a solid migration path to converged networks. And while the midmarket tends to be faced with small IT staffs, Cisco said its IPC program offers the solutions and the partners they need to improve their businesses.

The Cisco AutoQoS and IPC tools are available now. For details visit the company online at