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Troubleshooting 5G SA

The success of 5G SA depends on consistent quality of experience. Speed to resolution assures this.

Troubleshooting 5G SA is key

5G networks bring high expectations of performance and availability. Successfully troubleshooting 5G SA, leveraging adaptive data collection and full RAN-to-core visibility, is key to accelerating the deployment of differentiated 5G services that meet demanding consumer and industry expectations.



Troubleshooting 5G standalone means navigating complex environments comprised of physical, virtualized and cloud-native components in the context of dynamic network and service topologies. Data pulled from multiple sources (network functions, infrastructure and probes) must be knitted together to provide real-time end-to-end visibility and support root cause analysis.

Change drivers

5G SA networks will host a wide range of applications and devices reliant on mission critical connectivity and edge computing. Keeping a clear view of the UX of each user and device–and maintaining 5G RAN and core network performance–is the new challenge for operations and engineering teams. However, only 2% think their current service assurance systems are enough. (GSMA Mobile World Live survey, 2021).

5G standalone demands new troubleshooting tools across multiple data sources for timely, actionable insight.

Sources of change

  • Dynamic network and service topologies

    Network automation and orchestration mean that the network picture is constantly changing. Virtualized and cloud native functions that are deployed and torn down in real time make it difficult to troubleshoot issues affecting the user experience.

  • Control plane and user plane separation

    Service providers are putting CP and UP functions where they are most cost-effective. However, this split hampers real-time visibility, while there is a need to correlate user experience KQIs and trace every session and event.

  • More devices covered by SLAs

    Billions of new devices, many with high performance expectations and strict service level requirements, are coming online, while network complexity makes existing troubleshooting approaches a thing of the past.

  • A tsunami of data

    At scale, data intensive monitoring quickly becomes cost-prohibitive. Adaptive data collection significantly cuts the processing, storage and network resources typically associated with a “keep everything just in case” approach.

The path forward

There is a new cloud-native approach for troubleshooting 5G standalone that offers full end-to-end visibility, that leverages adaptive data collection to reduce the need for compute, storage and network resources while promoting real-time insight, and that correlates network performance and the user experience across user and control planes with rich metrics and xDRs.

EXFO’s solutions for troubleshooting 5G standalone enable service providers to deliver on the promise of 5G.


  • Adaptive probing and data capture

    Orchestrator-driven cloud-native probes can be instantiated where and when they are needed. Adaptive probing and data capture reduce compute and storage resources by up to 90% while providing the xDRs, metrics and other data required to take action.

  • Automated anomaly detection and root cause analysis

    AI and machine learning enable service providers to automatically detect and measure customer-impacting events in real time, including knowing who is impacted, where and for how long.

  • Event correlation and data enrichment

    Real-time correlation of events across control and user planes, network traces and raw packets, faults and telemetry. Generation of context-rich XDRs that speed analysis. Intuitive ladder diagrams and protocol decoding tools highlight critical events along the service path.

  • Data ingestion across multiple sources

    Ingest network function events, infrastructure observability, performance data from third party probes, and RAN session records for a complete picture of network performance and customer experience to accelerate MTTR. Stream metrics and KPIs across open interfaces to share actionable insight with existing systems.


Successful 5G service assurance enables service providers to accelerate the deployment of 5G SA and bring to market the use cases that generate the new revenues counted upon to fund network expansion

De-risk the journey to 5G standalone

Troubleshooting 5G standalone requires tools that can cut across network generations, including 3G/4G/5G NSA as well as VoLTE and IMS, to surface the right data needed to analyze and resolve customer-impacting service impairments. Real-time visibility of 5G SA performance provides the confidence to deploy new 5G use cases.