Challenges presented by the exponential growth of the Internet have resulted in the intense demand for broadband services. Providing bandwidth and connectivity on demand has risen to be an important goal of the service providers. To realize this, signaling in the optical network seems to be a critical component. Provisioning involves establishing a circuit from one client end system to another, through the optical backbone. With this general notion, this paper discusses in brief the role of signaling in all-optical networks, which employ DWDM for its lower layer transport. The architectural choices pertaining to lightpath services are outlined. Signaling procedure for ensuring dynamic end-to-end lightpath setup has also been presented. Path provisioning comprises a string of operations like service and neighbor discovery, route computation, signaling requests, and path setup. This paper tries to summarize the various strategies, designed for each step, for use in the all-optical networks.
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