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The authors investigate the problem of adaptive reliable multipath provisioning in next-generation backbone mesh networks employing optical Wavelength-Division Multiplexing (WDM) and channelization techniques such as SONET/SDH, and supporting Virtual Concatenation (VCAT). VCAT enables multipath provisioning, but also introduces differential delay at destination nodes. How to guarantee service availability, using multipath provisioning, and meet the Differential-Delay Constraint (DDC) is an important problem. They introduce the notation M : N (m) for multipath provisioning where a service path for a connection is set up with M primary paths and N backup paths, where each path has a fraction of the bandwidth of the connection, and (m) in this notation denotes "Multipath".
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