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In the design of telephone switching systems, the sequence of reliability design functions can be stated as 1) the formation of reliability objectives, 2) the allocation of these objectives, and 3) the modeling to verify the reliability obtained. Optimization techniques can be used in both reliability allocation and reliability modeling. This paper discusses the formation of reliability objectives and the methods of reliability goal allocation. Modeling examples are presented of a component-level reliability vs. cost trade-off and a system-level reliability analysis.