TEMS – A system for testing and monitoring air intefaces

In 1989, a group of engineers at Erisoft — an Ericsson subsidiary based in Northern Sweden — took part in a pre-GSM project and later in the development of large part of Ericsson’s GSM mobile station software. They soon realized the need for efficient, easy-to-use test tools to support the development, verification, installation and maintenance of cellular networks.

The air interface is often a weak link in the chain that connects wireless networks with mobile users. Efficient and easy-to-use tools for testing and verifying the functionality of the interface are crucial to secure, high-quality operation. These tools can also support the introduction of new features and the associated standards.

With Ericsson’s test mobile system, TEMS, and its supporting applications FICS (File and Information Converting system) and GIMS (Geographical Information Mobile Surveys), ongoing air-interface signalling and parameters of the radio environment can be visualized and verified. The use of TEMS will help both network operators and Ericsson’s system developers to achieve higher quality and reduce development time.

R520m TEMS Pocket is the first TEMS Pocket with GPRS capability. TEMS Pocket is a basic mobile network diagnostic tool built into an Ericsson R520m GPRS mobile station. Suitable for day-to-day verification, maintenance and troubleshooting of mobile networks but is also handy for many cell planning tasks.

The TEMS Software must be put on the phone during production, it can’t be made afterwards, designed by a special group located in Sweden under the Ericsson AB company — Erisoft.

GPRS performance measurements:
– Data transfer rate on uplink and downlink
– Timeslots used on uplink and downlink
– Total amount of data transferred
– Presentation of other GPRS parameters:
RAC, Routing Area Code, PTMSI, Packet TMSI
– Optional graphical presentation of RxLev and TxPower
– GPRS events
– GPRS Network Mode of Operation (NMO)
– GPRS ciphering algorithm (GEA/1, GEA/2)
– GPRS IP number
– Optional graphical presentation of:
FER, RxQual, and LLC/RLC decode error/retransmission rate
– Possible is connected to TEMS Investigation

Ericsson’s TEMS portfolio of products leads the world in helping wireless operators plan, optimize, and expand their networks.

As 2G networks mature into wideband voice and data networks, TEMS products are at the forefront of the changing technology to deliver solid, easy-to-use solutions to understand, control, and effectively manage wireless networks.

The TEMS portfolio will support all the 2.5G and 3G air interfaces wireless networks will use in the quest to make the Mobile Internet a Reality.

There are two versions of TEMS firmware: TEMS Pocket and TEMS PC.

TEMS Pocket firmware enables a special TEMS menu in the phone with more than ten menu-pages and the functions like locking to a special channel etc. Can be done by the phone and outside without any accessories.

TEMS PC looks like regular firmware (no special menu) but can be used with PC-application like TEMS investigation or TEMS deskcat. All informations are given to the PC and you can make log-files or use a GPS-system and a local map to mark the strength in a map.centercenter

TEMS vs ‘Channel Info’ (Net Monitor)

TEMS and ‘CHANNEL INFO’ enable menu (activated net monitor) are two very different things.

‘CHANNEL INFO’ (NET MONITOR) is a function which is build in all Ericsson handsets and can be activated by changing 00 to 01 at special EEPROM address.

TEMS is totally different firmware with much more functions like logging net activities, lock the phone to special channels, collecting informations about the net-strength, etc.

Example Channel Info / Net Monitor enable menu on Ericsson T28

The T28 and R320 have Channel Info enable flag located at address 0A5C, so try to write 01 to the address 0A5C and it will be switchable from level 0 up to level 3.

Edit EEPROM at:
0353 – Channel Info Allowed
0354 – Battery Allowed

In the EEPROM you have to change the byte at the address 0353 from 00 to 01 to activate net monitor.

But this is an implemented function which is not comparable to the functions of a T28 TEMS.
In T28 TEMS you have much more options and you can use it (if you have T28 TEMS PC firmware) to log the whole net-actions, strength etc to PC and you can pair the informations with a GPS-system and a map and so you can write your own net-strength-maps for example.

Another Example of Channel Info / Net Monitor enable menu on Ericsson R520m & T66