Skip to Main Content
This paper outlines current research trends in the network processor area. It stresses the need for a special class of network processors, namely the network processor for access network (NP4AN) sometimes called access processor. It further describes main challenges and architectural choices involved when designing network processors dedicated for use in access network nodes such as DSLAMs (DSL Access Multiplexer). Among others the protocol processing engine, IOs and memory have been considered in more detail. This paper concludes that the main optimization goal for designing such class of network processors should be cost-efficiency.