We are a group committed to developing a prototype implementation of Network Functions Virtualization based on cloud computing technology (OpenStack) and using SDN technology at the network level. Our work will be opened for broader participation later in 2013, likely by late September, and at that time we will be accepting inquiries on integrating with our framework. We've developed open, flexible, data models which we'll publish and we will open the basic interfaces currently framed by the NFV ISG work. Those who want to work with us should expect to provide the resources needed for the integration, including any incremental test facilities or equipment needed.
At a very high level, CloudNFV is a highly integrated and totally dynamic virtualization model, one that unlike classical forms of virtualization provides not only for flexible binding of abstractions to resources but also provides for totally dynamic creation of abstractions. We use this property to gather all of the information needed to provision and manage services, including NFV-defined services from a unified repository whose structure is whatever's convenient to the user. We care about information and relationships, not formats and interfaces. Our own implementation of NFV Orchestration is based on a general model of the TMF SID Services framework described in GB922, and we use the general principles of contract-arbitrated operations described in the TMF NGOSS Contract model to provide the mapping between the broad collection of resource information available in a cloud and the specific resources used to fulfill a particular service.
Yes, we said "cloud". We believe cloud computing is the only rational model for virtualization of resources at the software/server level, and so we use it as our presumptive approach. OpenStack is what we expect, and so you can run CloudNFV where you can run the latest version of OpenStack. Virtual Network Functions run under OpenStack, connected through Neutron (formerly Quantum). We provide customized orchestration, optimization of resoruce selection, and totally flexible "derived operations" management practices. CloudNFV is the "Fiuctions Virtualization" piece of "Network Functions Virtualization", and we provide a specfic framwork for building the "Network Functions" piece, deploying them, and managing them in live services.
Our project is well along, and we expect to be showing demonstrations in three distinct phases. First, we'll demonstrate the data model used for service composition and resource status. We expect to be doing some scheduled demos in September for this, focusing on members of the NFV ISG and the TMF. Second, we'll demonstrate actual composition and deployment. This will be available on a scheduled basis in early October and we may do a few more open demonstrations later in the month, again preferencing members of the ISG and the TMF. Finally, we will do open public demonstrations of functionalithy end-to-end, passing traffic, in December. Integration activities may introduce additional demonstration elements, or even demonstrations.
Here's our proposal to the NFV for a three-phase proof-of-concept (PoC):
CIMI Corporation will be submitting three POC proposals for consideration, based on the CloudNFV platform created by seven member companies in the NFV. CloudNFV is an NFV implementation built for OpenStack. A formal POC proposal document will be contributed in August, but we will propose a three-phase POC because of the scope of the issues we hope to explore.
The first proposal is aimed at validating the data modeling of NFV processes from the retail service level down to the virtual function level. We want to validate the information needed to describe a virtual function, deploy it, connect it with other functions, and connect the combination with live network equipment and user endpoints. We will, in this phase, establish the requirements to deploy, run, and manage VNFs and aggregations of VNFs deployed as services or service components. We expect that this POC proposal will be available for demonstration and review in September, and we will contribute the results.
The second proposal targets the actual deployment and management of VNFs on conforming infrastructure. In this POC we seek to validate the links between NFV and OSS/BSS/NMS frameworks, based on our TMF GB922-compatible service model. We also seek to validate our architecture for federating NFV at the cloud infrastructure level upward to the retail service level, and to confirm the structure needed for cross-management and settlement.
The third proposal targets deployment of retail end-to-end services and traffic management in a completely federated, global, NFV-compliant network. In this POC we seek to identify the operational challenges of global-scale federated NFV infrastructure and to establish the parameters of the management model needed for things like horizontal scaling, availability and QoS guarantees, transitioning from legacy devices to virtual functions, and integration of virtual-function services with cloud SaaS.
We will be publishing guidelines for integrating with CloudNFV in August, and at that point we will consider proposals from NFV member companies to integrate with us by providing virtual functions to host, network and server/system technology on which to run both our platforms and functions, and management and deployment tools to explore further optimizations in this area.