MCU Review Project Group : Charter
This page last changed on Feb 15, 2007 by firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charter MCU Review Project Group (Approved
Co Chairs Steve Cox (Flinders University)
Kewin Stoeckigt (AARNet)
Members 7 Representatives from the R&E Community
Partners Steve Neville (Codian)
Chris McKay (Codian)
Support Officer Tanya Ballat (AARNet)
AARNet Advisory Committee (AAC)
mailing list: email@example.com
Commence: 7 Feb 2007
Completion: 1st AAC meeting of 2008
Meeting, travel, admin - Max $20,000
Training allowance - $3,000
Infrastructure, systems - (server, software - AARNet Managed) $15,000.
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AARNet's survey on Video Conferencing recommended that AARNet increase Videoconferencing
Interoperability, Improve user support, develop VC policy recommendations, collect and disseminate best
practise information and provide industry support to the sector.
With regard to AARNet's specific VC services, Universities perceive that AARNet MCU booking system is
too complicated and not supported and managed. It also suffers from capacity issues in the booking
system itself due to its design, and securing a conference with a PIN requires a manual reset.
QoS, Firewalls, Security solutions, End point variability, accounting, billing are also issues that could be
resolved through a number of strategies including AARNet 3 QoS design, AUSERT Certification,
introduction of standards and quality assurance check and improvements to accounting and billing
The MCU Review Project group's major focus is to improve video conferencing within the R&E sector,
through AARNet's Codian MCU system (in partnership with Codian). Our primary purpose is to review
AARNet's MCU, determine future sustainable service offerings and consider/deploy enhancements. The
group will assess and trial technology and systems and put in place a set of recommendations for the
migration to a production ready service that includes details on how services will be supported and
associated documentation. At the conclusion of 2007 we will have successfully trialed an enhanced and
scalable conferencing system and service; we will have published a business case for the service and
another report on the future direction and further enhancements. We will then be in a position for AAC to
endorse the move to a production ready service for conferencing which will increase interoperability,
improve user support, provide policy recommendations, best practise information and industry support. .
Benefits to Members
Direct benefits for members will be:
• Increased interoperability through improvements in the MCU service (usability, support,
accessibility, information tracking, recording, booking, scheduling and accounting).
• Saving money (institutions do not have to buy duplicate equipment to provide redundancy).
• Increase capacity by overflow to other available MCUs (Options to be in pool or not).
• Standardised services (reduces support and maintenance requirements),
• Shared knowledge, access to regular training, enhanced skills and access to a range of information
(service, technical etc.)
• Shared MCU port resources for Members with Codian equipment.
• Buying club for equipment, systems, software, consulting expertise.
1. To gather a group of experts (ideally with access to Codian MCU equipment) to review current
AARNet conferencing infrastructure and support services.
2. To develop and test new conferencing bridging (and other related products) as part of a group of
Codian MCUs to assess integration of booking systems, scheduling systems, accounting systems and
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video conferencing endpoints and provide feedback to AARNet, AAC and the R&E community across
3. To support and guide AARNet's new video conferencing support service, including support to an
online knowledge base of video and conferencing information, training/workshops and the
development of quality assurance standards.
4. To promote awareness and benefits of the MCU service.
5. To consider the impact of future requirements and technical developments in video and
6. To provide a forum for exchanging experiences and knowledge.
1 Assist with the design, depolyment and testing
of the new service between AARNet, Flinders
University and other trial participants
2 Trial, assess(and write a report on) a commercial
grade booking system that is able to:* Integrate
with typical scheduling applications such as MS
Outlook and Groupwise.
• Support the aggregation of ports from MCUs
for sharing to optimize Codian MCU port
deployments amongst AARNet and AARNet
• Supply accounting and reporting information
that can show details on the use of
conferencing services and spare capacity,
information to support cost recovery
(billing) at institutions (if applicable), and
any interoperability issues encountered by
videoconferencing end points
• (optional) Support multiple forms of access
controls to the booking system to limit use to
Australian R&E customers (E.g. shibbolise the
• Support other MCU enhancements such as IP
VCR (video conference recording) and its
storage and distribution.
3 Subject to a successful trial (Deliverable 2),
document a viable business case for a suite of
enhanced MCU services coupled with detail on how
to migrate the trial service to a production ready
service with details supplied on the
infrastructure/systems, service processes and
4 Track emerging requirements and technologies
that can enhance video conferencing, e.g. desktop
video conferencing services, support for
collaboration applications, support for immersive
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multimedia "telepresence" solutions and support
for Access Grids and write a "video conferencing
emerging technology impact and assessment"
5 Provide advice on Codian MCU conferencing
systems via the public mailing list.
6 Assist AARNet by providing feedback on current
and planned conferencing service offerings,
workshops, training courses, quality assurance
schemes and in defining AARNet's video
conferencing support service (from a conferencing
1. Start up the MCU Group
a. Review current service and determine key outcomes
b. Confirm charter and workplan with AAC
c. Identify Universities with Codian MCUs and confirm additional participants
d. Survey existing Codian MCU owners
2. Initiate technical setup
a. Install and configure server
b. Setup booking system
3. Design and document service
a. Design/document network infrastructure
b. Design/document support infrastructure
c. Design/document booking scenario
d. Implement/adjust local support scenario
4. Apply and test service
a. Identify gaps
b. Test interoperability through Ozeconfs
5. Policy recommendations/documentation
a. Minimum requirements document
b. Usage policy
c. Quality assurance plan
d. Checklist for trial participation
e. Recommend solution for Firewall, Security,...
f. Recommend training/best practice
6. Disseminate information
a. MCU Review Group web page
b. Questnet session/preparation
c. CAVE training/preparation
d. Obtain feedback from the community about the service
e. Announce results of trial
f. Document meetings
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g. Report to AAC
7. Investigate Enhanced feature set/services
a. Conduct/explore security review
b. Setup and deploy usage reporting system
c. Develop XML script to retrieve MCU data
d. Develop accounting system for possible billing.
e. Shibbolize service
f. Consider additional services
8. Implementation, Review and Reporting
a. Implement support service
b. Review port capacity and service
c. Write up trial report
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