The Role of Virtual Routers In Carrier Networks

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1 The Role of Virtual Routers In Carrier Networks Sterling d Perrin Senior Analyst, Heavy Reading

2 Agenda Definitions of SDN and NFV Benefits of SDN and NFV Challenges and Inhibitors Some Use Cases Some Industry Examples Discussion and Q&A 2

3 Some SDN Definitions A Standards Body Definition: Software Defined Networking (SDN) is an emerging network architecture where network control is decoupled from forwarding and is directly programmable.this migration of control, formerly tightly bound in individual network devices, into accessible computing devices enables the underlying infrastructure to be abstracted for applications and network services, which can treat the network as a logical or virtual entity Network intelligence is (logically) centralized in software-based SDN controllers, which maintain a global view of the network. Software-Defined Networking: The New Norm for Networks, April 13, 2012 An Academic Definition: SDN is the separation of the control plane from the forwarding plane Everything else is a benefit that derives from that separation. Nick McKeown, OFC/NFOEC

4 NFV Definition Network Functions Virtualization Definition: Network Functions Virtualization aims to transform the way that network operators architect networks by evolving standard IT virtualization technology to consolidate many network equipment types onto industry-standard, high-volume servers, switches, and storage, which could be located in datacenters, network nodes, and in the end-user premises It involves the implementation of network functions in software that can run on a range of industry-standard server hardware, and that can be moved to, or instantiated in, various locations in the network as required, without the need for installation of new equipment. 4

5 Network Functions Virtualization Proprietary Network Appliances Software Appliances Message Router CDN Session Border Controller WAN Acceleration Orchestrated, automatic & remote install Intrusion Prevention System Firewall Carrier Grade NAT Tester/QoE monitor Pools of compute resources SGSN/GGSN PE Router BRAS RNC Standard High Volume Servers, Switches and Routers Source: ETSI NFV ISG, 2012 Standard High Volume Storage 5

6 Drivers for SDN/NFV Lower-cost hardware big savings are expected here Much faster upgrade cycles for both hardware and software components Lower opex, especially in maintaining distributed equipment New products and features that are only feasible in an SDN environment Revamp OSS using SDN Lower energy costs particularly important for some Reach new customers via virtualized service environment 6

7 Major Barriers to Adoption Major vendors dragging their feet, or lack of clarity on key suppliers and ecosystem builders Issues around legacy OSS Changing the corporate culture (operations, product development) Lack of standards in some areas Lack of orchestration layer Throughput issues at high end Lack of clarity on "hybrid" approaches Latency and other net/app-specific issues 7

8 NFV Potential Use Cases USE CASE Virtualization of mobile core network nodes Virtualization of mobile base stations Virtualized home environment Virtualized network function as a service Service chains with NFV Virtualization of CDNs DESCRIPTION Virtualization of core network nodes, including IMS. Affected functions could include packet data network gateways, serving gateways, mobility management entities, and mobile home subscriber servers. Aims at realizing the base station function (at least specific functional block) with software based on standard IT platform. Mainly focused on LTE LTE-A, but similar concept can be applied to 2G, 3G and WiMax. Aims to shift functionality away from the home to a network-located environment as a way to solve many installation and lifecycle upgrade problems, consolidating the corresponding workloads into equipment installed in the network operator premises. Virtualization targets include: residential gateway; set-top box; WiFi access points; home enodeb. Possible virtualization targets: enterprise access router/enterprise CPE, provider edge router, enterprise firewall, enterprise NG-FW, enterprise WAN optimization, deep packet inspection (appliance or a function), IPS and other security appliances, network performance monitoring. Virtualizing the appliance functions and putting them into applications on a server in a single location or area making service analysis more efficient and streamlining the flow of traffic in the network. Virtualization of content delivery networks (CDNs) potentially covers all components of the CDN, though the initial impact would probably be on cache nodes for achieving acceptable performance (e.g., throughput, latency). Source: ETSI,

9 Intel DPDK Accelerated Open vswitch Memory Management Intel Data Plane Development Kit Queue / Ring Functions Project Objectives Improve small packet throughput User space implementation Compliment Intel s hardware switching Use existing OVS infrastructure NIC Poll Mode Drivers Flow Classification 9

10 Intel/Wind River/HP Accelerated Open vswitch Demonstration at IDF 2013 Combined Intel DPDK, Wind River OVP, and HP hardware Source: Intel and Wind River Reported 10x performance gain in packet switching by bypassing the vswitch in the Linux kernel Provides a "horizontal" platform that can be used across multiple use cases emerging for both SDN and NFV 10

11 Brocade Vyatta 5600 vrouter Sept. 18, 2013 Brocade Expands NFV Product Portfolio With New Brocade Vyatta 5600 vrouter New Product Family Is First to Address Performance Demands of Telcos and Service Providers SAN JOSE, CA, Sep 18, 2013 (Marketwired via COMTEX) -- Brocade is the industry leader in Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and Software-Defined Networking (SDN) with almost 1.3 million downloads of its products worldwide. Building on this success, the Brocade(R) Vyatta(R) 5600 vrouter is the latest addition to the company's NFV product portfolio and brings with it an impressive performance boost. As the first virtual router for telco-class networks, the Brocade Vyatta 5600 is up to 40 times faster than competitive virtual routing products. What's New: Directly answers the NFV call to action of the world's largest telecommunication and service providers Leverages Brocade vplane technology capable of 10 Gbit/s throughput per x86 core Addresses use cases such as BGP routing, ACL offload, and Virtual BGP Route Reflection, among others Is currently in limited availability and scheduled for general availability at the end of 2013 Complements the Brocade Vyatta 5400 vrouter product family, which is designed for Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) and is currently deployed by industry leaders such as Amazon, Rackspace, and SoftLayer 11

12 commoditization OSPF, BGP, IS-IS automation Netsocket Virtual Network (NVN) Software Defined Networking (SDN) Three-tier Architecture Application Layer vnetcommander vnetoptimizer System Center Plug-In OpenStack Plug-In Enterprise/SP Apps vsocket Controller Layer vrouter Communications Plane vfirewall vflowcontroller vtunnel Infrastructure Layer vflow or OpenFlow vflowswitch Legacy Networks 12

13 Netsocket Virtual Network Traditional Edge Rack vs. Virtual Edge Low-Cost Commodity Hardware Operational Efficiency through Cloud Managed Service Low-touch Customer Experience Secure Reliable Access Extensibility for New Services 13

14 End-to-End Virtual Networking Business Case Oher advantages 14

15 Summary & Conclusions SDN and NFV are passing the euphoria phase and moving into a new phase focused on building practical use cases and overcoming the barriers and challenges Virtual routers in the WAN and NFV are tightly coupled trends Routing functions are being virtualized in NFV Operators eyeing edge/access functions, at least initially Ensuring performance in virtualized network will be key Functions that require high-performance ASICs will be the last to be virtualized (e.g., core routers) However, SDN is very much targeted at core router segment Early examples of virtual routers for the WAN are starting to emerge Moving forward, the networking industry needs more refinement of the use cases identified for NFV and SDN, as well as more proof points identifying practical implementations of SDN and NFV standards and technologies. 15

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