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Transparent switching enables the transfer of information flows on circuits, between ports on interfaces to a network, that consist of fixed-length transparent switching frames that occur at a provisioned fixed repetition rate. In the network interfaces, flows from outside the network are groomed and mapped into circuits. Inside the network, circuits can be switched and multiplexed either on the basis of data containers, "transparent switching frames," or on the basis of underlying transport technologies. In networks that must carry a preponderance of packet traffic, transparent switching provides a simple means of providing delay and bandwidth guarantees to specific traffic flows.