1. Introduction

CGRateS is a very fast and easily scalable (charging, rating, accounting, lcr, mediation, billing, authorization) ENGINE targeted especially for ISPs and Telecom Operators.

It is written in Go programming language and is accessible from any programming language via JSON RPC. The code is well documented (go doc compliant API docs) and heavily tested. (also 1300+ tests are part of the build system).

After testing various databases like Kyoto Cabinet, Apache Cassandra, Redis and MongoDB, the project focused on Redis as it delivers the best trade-off between speed, configuration and scalability.

Important

MongoDB full support is now added.

Thanks to CGRateS flexibility, connection to any database can be easily integrated by writing a simple adapter.

To better understand the CGRateS architecture, below are some logical configurations in which CGRateS can operate:

Note

RALs - is a CGRateS component and stands for RatingAccountingLCR service.

_images/Simple.png

This scenario fits most of the simple installations.

_images/Normal.png

While the network grows more RALs can be thrown into the stack to offer more requests per seconds workload. This implies the usage of the Balancer to distribute the requests to the RALs running on the different machines.

_images/Normal_ha.png

Without Balancer using HA (broadcast) ....

_images/Complicated.png

Of course more SessionManagers can serve multiple Telecom Switches and all of them are connected to the same Balancer.

_images/Complicated_ha.png

Without Balancer using HA (broadcast) ....

Note

We are planning to support multiple Balancers for huge networks if the need arises.

1.1. CGRateS Features

  • Reliable and Fast ( very fast ;) ). To get an idea about speed, we have benchmarked 13000+ req/sec on a rather modest machine without requiring special tweaks in the kernel.
    • Using most modern programming concepts like multiprocessor support, asynchronous code execution within microthreads.
    • Built-in data caching system per call duration.
    • In-Memory database with persistence over restarts.
    • Use of Linux enterprise ready tools to assure High-Availability of the Balancer where that is required (Supervise for Application level availability and LinuxHA for Host level availability).
    • High-Availability of main components is now part of CGRateS core.
  • Modular architecture
    • Easy to enhance functionality by writing custom session managers or mediators.
    • Flexible API accessible via both Gob (Golang specific, increased performance) or JSON (platform independent, universally accessible).
  • Prepaid, Postpaid and Pseudo-Prepaid Controller.
    • Mutiple Primary Balances per Account (eg: MONETARY, SMS, INTERNET_MINUTES, INTERNET_TRAFFIC).
    • Multiple Auxiliary Balances per Account (eg: Free Minutes per Destination, Volume Rates, Volume Discounts).
    • Concurrent sessions per account sharing the same balance with configurable debit interval (starting with 1 second).
    • Built-in Task-Scheduler supporting both one-time as well as recurrent actions (eg: TOPUP_MINUTES_PER_DESTINATION, DEBIT_MONETARY, RESET_BALANCE).
    • ActionTriggers (useful for commercial offerings like receive amounts of monetary units if a specified number of minutes was charged in a month).
  • Highly configurable Rating.
    • Connect Fees.
    • Priced Units definition.
    • Rate increments.
    • Millisecond timestaps.
    • Four decimal currencies.
    • Multiple TypeOfRecord rating (eg: standard vs. premium calls, SMSes, Internet Traffic).
    • Rating subject concatenations for combined records (eg: location based rating for same user).
    • Recurrent rates definition (per year, month, day, dayOfWeek, time).
    • Rating Profiles activation times (eg: rates becoming active at specific time in the future).
  • Multi-Tenant for both Prepaid as well as Rating.
  • Flexible Mediator able to run multiple mediation processes on the same CDR.
  • Verbose action logging in persistent databases (eg: MongoDB/PostgreSQL/MySQL) to cope with country specific law requirements.
  • Good documentation ( that’s me :).
  • “Free as in Beer” with commercial support available on-demand.

1.3. License

CGRateS is released under the terms of the [GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE Version 3]. See LICENSE.txt file for details.