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DICOM Configuration. Robert Horn, Agfa Corporation. Supplement 67. Existing Industry Protocols NTP (Network Time Protocol) DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) DNS (Domain Name System) LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol) Existing Configuration Tools

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DICOM Configuration

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Dicom configuration

DICOM Configuration

Robert Horn, Agfa Corporation

Supplement 67

Supplement 67

  • Existing Industry Protocols

    • NTP (Network Time Protocol)

    • DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol)

    • DNS (Domain Name System)

    • LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol)

  • Existing Configuration Tools

  • Existing support databases

  • DICOM specific information model for LDAP databases

Dicom configuration goals

DICOM Configuration Goals

  • Support New Functions

    • Security and Privacy

    • Synchronized Multi-device Acquisitions

  • Reduce Operational Costs

    • Network Administration

    • AE-Title management

    • Service location management

    • Feature location management

Time synchronization

Time Synchronization

  • For

    • Multi-device simultaneous acquisitions

      • Cardiac Catheterization laboratory

    • Coordination

      • Security Logs, Procedure Logs

    • Convenience

Synchronization specification

Synchronization Specification

  • Specify error relative to time reference(s)

  • Acceptable absolute time error (relative to UTC)

    • o( 1s ) security logs

    • o( 100s ) cardiac catheterization

  • Acceptable synchronization error within a Time Source (0018,1801) (relative to local source)

    • o( 1s ) security logs

    • o( 10ms) cardiac catheterization (a few percent of one cycle of a rapidly beating heart).

  • Ntp network time protocol

    NTP - Network Time Protocol

    • Widely available

    • Suitable for both low precision time and high precision time synchronization

    • SNTP (Simple NTP) clients for low precision and limited capability systems.

    • Extensively documented and explained on www.ntp.org

    Accuracy capability of ntp

    Accuracy capability of NTP

    • o(1s) Either client (NTP,SNTP), network capable OS, Internet, GPS, or radio connection

    • o(250ms) NTP client, interrupt driven OS, NTP clock controls

    • o(100ms) local network topology

    • o(10ms) OS clock, OS design

    • o(1 ms) OS/application design, network topology

    • o(100 us) Hardware assist, OS/application design

    • o(10 us) Instrumentation clock, custom OS

    • o(1 us) Atomic clock, extensive hardware assist

    How ntp works

    How NTP works


    Time Sent (Ta)


    Time Query Received (Ti)

    Time Response Sent (Tj)

    Current Time Parameters (TP)

    Redundant Servers

    NTP Server

    Client Provides

    Old Network Parameters

    Old Time Parameters



    Mathematical Magic happens

    Client Sets and Fine TunesSystem Clock

    SNTP performs only the clock setting

    NTP includes the network delay estimation,

    optimal estimation mathematics and

    fine tuning of the system clock.

    NTP Client

    NTP clients may utilize redundant servers

    NTP clients may utilize instrumentation grade

    pulse generators (e.g. Atomic Clocks)

    Typical ntp configurations

    Typical NTP configurations


    NTP Server

    GPS Receiver



    NTP Clients

    Switching Hub

    Local NTP Server

    Network admin

    Network admin

    • DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol)

      • Assigns IP address, hostname

      • Informs DNS of assignment

      • Provides routing, NTP, DNS, etc. information to client

  • DNS (Domain Name System)

    • Provides hostname to IP lookup services

    • Provides server location lookup services

  • LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol)

    • Provides simple information directory services

  • Dicom configuration


    • Widely used

    • Support stable IP allocation (needed for transition and legacy equipment)

    • Supports dynamic IP allocation

    • Understood by IT administrators

    • Documents network IP configuration in file

    • Devices only need their "name"

    Dicom configuration


    • Widely used

    • Provides translation from hostname to IP

    • DHCP uses DDNS option to maintain coordination with dynamic IP assignments

    • RR SRV records provide location of LDAP server

    Dicom configuration


    • Widely used (known as Active Directory in Windows)

    • Simple query oriented network database

    • Simple information model. Schema provided as part of Supplement 67.

    • Alternatives examined

      • CIM: very attractive, but a much larger effort to define and implement. Not yet widely used.

      • SNMP, DMTF: interesting but deal with different aspects of network administration and management.

    Locate ae title internal operation

    Locate AE-title (internal operation)

    LDAP Server

    Where is AE-X

    AE-X is at hostname, port


    Where is hostname?

    DNS Server

    Hostname is x.y.z.w



    Beyond finding ae titles

    Beyond Finding AE-Titles

    • Installation and Network Configuration oriented

    • AE Configuration

      • Obtain new unique AE-Title

      • SOP Classes supported (SCU/SCP, Transfer Syntaxes)

      • IHE Actor

      • Vendor extension

    • Device Configuration

      • Description

      • Vendor extension

      • Hospital extension

    Pre configured installation

    Pre-configured Installation

    • Large network addition

    • Multiple vendors

    • Reduce coordination and scheduling delays

    • Reduce configuration errors

    • Reduce staging requirements

    Pre configured installation1

    Pre-configured Installation

    Vendor A Preparation





    IT Organization














    Vendor B preparation

    Add another machine

    Add another machine

    Get IP, hostname, etc.


    Install Hardware

    Find LDAP Server

    Assign Name



    Query Configuration

    Configure System

    Obtain Unique AE Titles

    Update Configuration

    Hospital network reconfiguration

    Hospital network reconfiguration

    DHCP Server

    Shutdown (DHCP)

    Revise DHCP Configuration

    Resume DHCP

    Modify network hardware

    Clients Resume

    Customer assisted maintenance

    Customer Assisted Maintenance

    • Simple device swap

    • Remote reconfiguration

    • Local reconfiguration

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