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OpenStack brings NFV to telco networking

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Kathy Gibson at VMworld in Barcelona — In the world of technology, concepts from science fiction are becoming science fact.
Ideas like exoskeletons for superhuman strength and even teleportation are quickly becoming reality, says Pat Gelsinger, CEO of VMware.
“The most radical change of all is possibly our perspective; our frame of reference,” he adds. “We are quickly moving from mind-blowing to mundane.
“This is because everywhere you look, technology is permeating the experience.”
Commerce is an obvious example. Giants like Amazon and Alibaba has radically changed the way people shop, and there are more changes to come, Gelsinger says.
The telco industry is ripe for transformation as well, he says. The exponential increase in networks and devices, together with the pending 5G roll-out, is driving a move from siloed applications to converged networks offering a variety of applications and services.
“Against this background, VMware is very exciting to be announcing VMware OpenStack 4.0, helping to building cool new carrier requirements.”
The new vCloud NFV-OpenStack platform includes VMware Integrated OpenStack-Carrier Edition, VMware’s new OpenStack Ocata-based distribution that is fully integrated, tested, and certified with VMware’s NFV infrastructure platform. Using VMware Integrated OpenStack as an NFV Virtualised Infrastructure Manager (VIM), network architects can easily deploy, upgrade, and operate an OpenStack cloud on top of VMware’s carrier-grade NFVI platform.
“The release of vCloud NFV-OpenStack Edition and announcement of VMware Integrated OpenStack-Carrier Edition is a major step forward in our NFV strategy, given the feedback we received from our customers,” says Gabriele Di Piazza, vice-president of solutions: Telco NFV Group at VMware. “We are able to offer the fastest path to production OpenStack by providing what nobody else has in the market: the most reliable and rich NFV infrastructure based on VMware’s industry-leading virtualisation software combined with the openness of standard OpenStack to be optimised with carrier extensions.”
VMware Integrated OpenStack-Carrier Edition has been developed specifically to address the requirements of CSPs deploying NFV-based network services on OpenStack. VMware vCloud NFV-OpenStack brings native support for container-based Virtualized Network Functions (VNF) through integrated container management, enabling VM and container-based VNFs to run on a single VIM.
The solution leverages Ocata’s specific functionality to give CSPs tools to deploy NFV networks including:
* Multi-tenancy and VNF resource reservation: provides resource-level tenant isolation and guaranteed resource availability for each tenant, enabling CSPs to deliver on infrastructure SLAs while securing tenants within the network and improved capacity planning.
* Dynamic and elastic scaling of network resources: allows CSPs to create elastic service constructs that can scale network functions up or down, in and out based on usage patterns in order to respond to real-time network traffic conditions. This enables optimal resource management and lowering of capital and operational costs.
* Enhanced networking support and platform awareness (EPA): delivers carrier-grade, low latency data-plane performance, enabling CSPs to maintain network performance to deliver a high subscriber Quality of Experience while optimizing resource utilization through supported methodologies such as CPU Pinning, fine-grained NUMA placement settings, support for multiple NIC types and Single Root I/O Virtualisation (SR-IOV).
Leveraging VMware’s rich feature set for NFVI and VMware Integrated OpenStack-Carrier Edition, VMware vCloud NFV-OpenStack offers CSPs:
* Simplified OpenStack installation and deployment: VMware Integrated OpenStack-CE allows templated install and deployment of a complete OpenStack Infrastructure within the VMware vSphere Web Client, leveraging advanced management capabilities through vCenter.
* Seamless OpenStack upgrade experience: Control Plane and Data Plane separation allows for zero network services downtime and service continuity during the OpenStack upgrade process. CSPs can keep up with the pace of innovation through fast upgrades and patching.
* Integrated operations management: through unique NFVI operational automation and Ceilometer integration, along with proactive and predictive analytics, issue isolation, root cause analysis and fast remediation capabilities. VMware vRealize Operations Manager, Log Insight, Network Insight integrated within vCloud NFV-OpenStack, provide operations monitoring, analytics, and a remediation platform via a single pane of glass that reduces operational costs through fast Mean-Time-To-Understand and Repair (MTTU/MTTR).
“With VMware OpenStack 4.0 we are helping to create this next-generation telco infrastructure,” Gelsinger says.
VMware announced Vodafone Group Plc has selected VMware to support the operator’s global roll out of NFV, while Dell EMC and VMware introduced a new pre-integrated and pre-validated NFV Solution that is OpenStack Ready.