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In this letter, the routing and wavelength assignment problem in all optical networks is considered. We improve the Max-RWA model presented by R. M. Krishnaswamy and K. N. Sivarajan (see ibid., vol.5, p.435-7, Oct. 2001) by introducing limited-range wavelength conversions. Considering transmission performance, we propose a new optimization objective, which is to establish the maximum number of connections with the least number of wavelength converters. The modified Max-RWA problem is formulated as a integer linear programming (ILP) problem, and then solved using a genetic algorithm. The extended layered-graph approach is used to assign routes and wavelengths when necessary, thus reducing the complexity of the genetic algorithm. Numerical results obtained for NSFNET are presented.