Fee counter for intelligent net

A billing device, technology of intelligent network

Inactive Publication Date: 2003-10-22
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AI-Extracted Technical Summary

Problems solved by technology

This results in a heavy workload for unit testing. It may be necessary to conduct a comprehensive unit test on the entire billing after only modifying a dozen lines of programs. This greatly affects our development efficiency and prolongs the product development cycle.
[0004] Another problem with the existing technology is: since the billing formulas are hard-coded in the SCP, the billing formulas cannot be customized flexibly, so whenever there is a new demand and the billing formula needs to be changed, the original program may It is difficult to meet new needs
[0005] The third problem of the prior art is: when the demand for billing changes, it is often necessary to add or change some billing data t...
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Method used

By extracting the functions of the billing part, they are placed in the billing component to realize, so that the billing module is independent in the SCP, and the SCF and SCFServer no longer realize the billing function, reducing the billing module The degree of coupling with SCF and SCFServer reduces the impact on other modules when modifying the billing module, which reduces the workload of modification, especially greatly reduces the workload caused by post-modification testing.
[0077] In some previous versions, in order to achieve the purpose of flexibly controlling the billing by the business, the billing module is divided into multiple SIBs, and more CID and SSD interfaces are opened to...
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A charging device consists of service control logic, a charge component independent to the service control logic and service data bank to the connected with the two in communication, of which the service control logic is used to transmit basic charge information to the charging component and the charging component is used to finished charging operation according to the received basic charge information and data obtained from the service data bank as well as to return the calculation result back to the service control logic.

Application Domain

Metering/charging/biilling arrangements

Technology Topic

Information deliveryService control +2


  • Fee counter for intelligent net
  • Fee counter for intelligent net
  • Fee counter for intelligent net


  • Experimental program(1)

Example Embodiment

[0037] The present invention will be described in further detail below through specific embodiments and in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.
[0038] like figure 1 Shown is a schematic diagram of the working mode of SCP in a charging example in the prior art, and its charging point is in the SCP. Its billing SIB and business logic closely interact in a business logic file, which is interpreted and executed by the SCF. The working method is as follows:
[0039] The Manager (main control process) sends the message to the MSCU (main service control unit, SCF in the figure), and the main control module is responsible for scheduling the automaton and business logic processing and related charging SIBs to complete the calculation of charging. Generate bills and update database records; all charging related codes and business logic processing codes are completely coupled.
[0040] The corresponding system configuration is as follows figure 2 ,Depend on figure 2 In the configuration of , it can be seen that all billing work is completely completed with business logic processing (in MSCU/SCU). The meaning of each part is as follows:
[0041] SMAP service management access point
[0042] SMP service management point
[0043] MSCU main service control unit
[0044]SCU Service Control Unit
[0045] SDP business data points
[0046] SAU signaling access unit
[0047] The functions of each part are:
[0048] SAU provides service signaling access, and communicates with SCU/MSCU through TCP/IP protocol;
[0049] MSCU/SCU realizes the control and processing of business logic, including billing;
[0050] SDP provides storage and query of business data and user data information;
[0051] SMP provides business management operations;
[0052] SMAP provides a service management access platform and issues various management and control signals.
[0053] Different from the above situation, the present invention separates the billing component, which is called "billing componentization". image 3 It is a schematic diagram of the function of billing componentization in the system.
[0054] Figure 4 It is a schematic diagram of the system working method of an embodiment of the present invention after charging componentization. As can be seen from the figure, the billing component runs as an independent service process, which is completely transparent to the business logic (SCF in the figure). The fee component is completed, and the fee calculation result after the end of the business is returned to the business control logic. At the same time, the billing component also updates the database records and generates relevant file information; SCF is only responsible for business logic control and processing that does not include billing calculation and other related work. . Figure 5 It is the system configuration mode diagram of this embodiment. In this configuration, it can be seen that the newly added billing component maintains communication with the SCU/MSCU and SDP at the same time, and all billing-related work is directly handed over to the billing component by the MSCU/SCU, and the billing component can directly access the SDP to obtain Charging related data, and return the charging result to the MSCU/SCU to complete the subsequent process processing.
[0055] Image 6 It is a schematic diagram of the hierarchical structure of the charging component in this embodiment. It is divided into three layers: the lowest layer (layer1) is the basic function layer, the middle layer (layer2) is the basic structure layer, and the top layer (layer3) is the configurable charging service layer (you can configure the charging method). ). The billing component provides an open interface, so that each functional layer can be easily extended to meet different needs.
[0056] The billing basic function layer (LAYER1 layer) is a billing basic function API function set. We decompose the billing functions into some basic functions, and these basic billing functions are realized by the billing basic function functions. These basic functions are then provided to higher layers for invocation. In the LAYER1 layer, the operation function for querying the data table required for number analysis is provided. It can query each billing data table in the billing matrix according to the given conditions, so that the query function has nothing to do with the specific structure of the billing table. At the same time, it must also be able to provide various basic query algorithms, including dichotomy and maximum matching. When querying billing data, you only need to specify the name of the data table to be queried, the query conditions and the query algorithm, and the query function can obtain the required billing data.
[0057] The basic structure layer (LAYER2 layer) divides the basic functional structure according to the charging needs, calls the basic functions of the charging components, and encapsulates these basic functions into basic modules that can complete specific charging functions to provide the charging service layer. transfer. At the LAYER2 layer, it can provide the base class for billing and calculation. For the current pay-per-time, time-based, fixed-rate, and flow-based billing, it provides corresponding class processing billing calculations and budgets, and supports SSP and The billing function when there is a time difference between SCPs; the currency exchange rate function can be provided, the percentage total surcharge function can be provided; it can also provide the calculation and budget function calculated by traffic in GPRS.
[0058] The charging service layer (LAYER3 layer) belongs to the most flexible part of the charging component. The billing service layer can combine the billing functions of the first two layers to complete the billing function according to the specific billing requirements. The billing service layer is the top layer of the billing component, the layer directly related to related services, and the layer that is most likely to change in the billing component. The charging service can adopt different charging services according to different charging services. In order to flexibly adapt to different billing requirements, the billing service layer needs to be designed as simple as possible, so as to facilitate the modification of billing services when the demand changes in the future. At the LAYER3 layer, a billing calculation and budgeting service is provided to realize the function of the existing billing calculation SIB.
[0059] Currently, billing is divided into two parts: cost calculation and budget according to function; The feature of pay-per-view is its discontinuity (fixed-rate billing can be seen as a special case of per-time billing), hourly billing and flow-rate billing are both continuous billing, the difference lies in the different calculation units .
[0060] The billing process is mainly divided into five parts according to functions: initializing data, dividing discount range, obtaining the rate of billing category, cost calculation, and cost budget.
[0061] After the billing componentization scheme is adopted in this embodiment, the development and use of billing services are as follows: Figure 7 The mode shown (where the SCE has no direct connection with other modules, just calls a billing componentized SIB when generating and editing a service). The SCF only accesses this independent charging module through some open interfaces or messages to complete the charging function in the call flow. In this way, the coupling between the billing module and the SCP is reduced, and the billing independence is enhanced. When the billing module needs to be modified, the impact on other modules in the SCP can be reduced, and the billing module can be greatly reduced. The effect of the modification on the SCP system. The charging component SIB in the SCF only needs to transparently transmit the input parameters to the charging component and retrieve the output parameters, regardless of data processing. The above process is completely completed through configuration, and the charging development is completely concentrated on the charging component side, and the SCE and SCF programs do not need to be modified after the development.
[0062] Its basic algorithm flow is as follows Figure 8 shown. It includes the following steps:
[0063] a. Analyze input data;
[0064] b. If the input data is wrong, return FAIL, and set the error number as parameter error;
[0065] c. Obtain the billing matrix type selected according to the business;
[0066] d. Query to obtain the charging matrix and additional charging information, and save the additional charging information in the basic charging information transmitted by the SCF to form new charging information;
[0067] e.Service puts the obtained charging matrix and charging information into the output parameter buffer, and transmits them to the SCF for subsequent processing.
[0068] The core part can be described as: 1) Initialize the input data; 2) Generate different billing classes according to the cost calculation method selected by the service; 3) Call the corresponding cost calculation and cost budget functions for calculation.
[0069] In addition, because the charging modules in several versions of the current intelligent network are very different in implementation, their interfaces with services are also very different. There is only one charging SIB for wired, and four for wireless. related SIBs, so it is very difficult for our new billing components to be compatible with previous old versions. We use the following method to be compatible with previous old versions:
[0070] First of all, we adopt a flexible configuration method in the interface part of the billing module. For different versions, we can keep their original SIBs as interfaces in the intelligent network. These SIBs are only responsible for transmitting the input data to the billing components. At the same time, corresponding to each SIB, there is a corresponding script, and the billing component realizes the function that the corresponding SIB should complete by analyzing these scripts.
[0071] To sum up, the advantages of the system of this embodiment are as follows:
[0072] 1. Independence of billing module:
[0073] By extracting the functions of the billing part and placing them in the billing component, the billing module is separated from the SCP, and the SCF and SCFServer no longer implement the billing function, reducing the billing module and SCF, The degree of coupling between SCFServers makes it possible to reduce the impact on other modules when modifying the billing module, which can reduce the workload of modification, especially greatly reduce the workload caused by testing after modification.
[0074] 2. Billing flexibility:
[0075] In the past, the purpose of flexible charging was achieved by opening some interfaces for services. The interfaces of services were mainly CID (call instance data) and SSD (service support data). The service can also achieve the purpose of controlling the charging process by combining different SIBs. Relatively speaking, it is more flexible to use a dynamic script to control the billing process, and the billing formula can also be configured through the script, and the billing data table can be dynamically managed. These are the current business There is no way to do it. And modifying the script does not involve other modules, so it is relatively simple to modify.
[0076] 3. Reduce business complexity:
[0077] In some previous versions, in order to achieve the purpose of flexibly controlling the billing by the business, the billing module was divided into multiple SIBs, and more CID and SSD interfaces were opened to the business. Most of these interfaces It is the interface inside the billing module. In this way, the complexity of service development is increased, and the service can only realize the charging function through the configuration of multiple SIBs. Now we use dynamic scripts to control the billing process, and some business logic of previous billing can be reflected in the form of scripts. Most of the internal interfaces in the billing module can be implemented in scripts, shielding the internal interfaces and services of the billing module. In this way, the interfaces open to the business can be greatly reduced, so as to achieve the purpose of reducing the business complexity.
[0078] 4. Compatibility with older versions. As mentioned above, since there is a corresponding script corresponding to each SIB, the billing component realizes the functions that should be completed by the corresponding SIB by analyzing these scripts, which is compatible with various old versions of intelligent networks.
[0079] The English abbreviations appearing in the text or figures (the parts not described in detail above) have the following Chinese meanings:
[0080] SERVER, server; HeatBeat, heartbeat message; AC, send billing request, a command of intelligent network protocol; ACR, receive billing request, a command of intelligent network protocol; Radius, a communication protocol, mainly fixed network data Communication protocol; FEA function, function entity action function; system CID, system call instance data; HSIB, super service independent module; OAM AGENT and SMF AGENT: two processes involved in maintenance and management; INAP: intelligent network application specification; CAP: Intelligent Network Application Protocol.


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Description & Claims & Application Information

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