Agents for networks and services

The important characteristic of the New Generation Network (NGN) architecture is the separation of transport and service stratums. From the transport perspective, NGN is a fully digital packet switched network based on IP, migrating from the network protocol IPv4 towards IPv6. From the service perspective, standardised and open application programme interfaces allow the introduction of new services and applications. The separation of services and applications (service stratum) from information transport (transport stratum) creates new value chain and new market, and asks for innovative service provisioning concepts.

Service provisioning process can be defined as the setting in place and configuring of the hardware and software required for activating to a customer and managing it taking into account service personalization and context-awareness. Intelligent and mobile agents provide autonomy and adaptability required for such provisioning process. The research focus is on agents and multi-agent systems that enable automation of service provisioning process and perform operations such as remote software installation, starting, stopping, execution in parallel and selective mode, upgrading, testing, and version replacement.