Thank you to everyone who joined SDxCentral for its latest webinar featuring HP on the popular NFV Report. HP guided us through the popular NFV Report webinar, and lead us to a better understanding of the technology that is changing the market. After the demo, HP was nice enough to take some questions from the attendees. Read the whole Q&A from the HP NFV Report webinar below!
From the outset, this looks like it’s very involved and complicated. Is this really what customers have to trade off for flexibility?
HP: Bringing in the changes I mentioned, I believe it will be simpler than OSS ever was. If we can adopt the principles of MANO to the OSS level, it is a big step towards simplification.
Can any VNF be used? Does it require any modifications?
HP: It is not the idea of ETSI to modify a VNF before it can be integrated, but a VNF vendor needs to consider if it needs its own VNF manager. Actually, some VNF systems are rather static, in particular, in how they deal with their networks. Sometimes, this restricts the NFVO to provide flexibility which is offered for Network Service Orchestration. This is less a matter of the VNFs themselves, and more of the VNF management.
Note that in order to benefit fully from scaling, a VNF vendor might wish to restructure a VNF in more granular VNFC, but it is not a requirement.
Given MANO has defined interfaces, does this mean I could have an ecosystem of different vendors providing pieces of the MANO and NFV-I and VNFs? Is it possible today with mix of vendors?
HP: Yes, of course. The problem is MANO has identified interfaces, but is far away from specified interfaces, even if this is the goal of ETSI Phase 2. As long as this is not done, it stays a system integration task to bring things together. Of course we prefer standardized interfaces. If this is not given we use a library approach (if applicable). When an integration is done the first time, we do it on a license basis and re-use it for further cases. Our OSS and NFV solutions are made for multivendor environments, although HP is happy to sell it all.
Does HP Director integrate with an SDN controller, if so which one does it support?
Do you see value of capacity analytics and closed loop capabilities only at end-to-end service level or also in NFV MANO?
HP: Actually, MANO was the first that made this closed loop and capacity analytics “productizable.” ETSI defined the model in a way that it allows for a closed loop. On the E2E level it is far more challenging, as there is no definition of a “scale-out/in/up/down” or automatic relocation of VMs. For NFV capacity analytics, we have defined dimensions related to IT and mapped to VNF/NS usage. It’s not obvious how to do that on an E2E basis. The value exists on both levels, just on NFV, it’s already well-defined.
There will be a lot of changes to the existing OSS/BSS platform to accommodate NFV. What is HP’s view on how long this transformation will take?
HP: It depends on a few factors. First, where are our customers with their existing landscape? And two, where are our customers with their vision on how it should look? What I talked about is what we see today, and we make our solutions ready for this now. Disruptive technologies like IoT will challenge this more. We see all customers starting their new OSS/BSS vision this year, few consider first changes early on. Overall, I believe the next five years will be most intensive for OSS changes.
Has Telefonica implemented SDN along with NFV at a POC?
HP: Yes. UNICA is using SDN with HP DCN solution (an OEM of ALU Nuage).
Did Telefonica UNICA select HP for anything other than the integrator and the VIM?
HP: For Telefonica UNICA, HP is providing the HW, VIM with Helion OpenStack, the data center management tools, a sophisticated VIM layer that allows to create, manage, operate multi-tenant virtual data centers across multiple sites, and deploy virtual applications on them.
Can you comment on what is meant by “analytics?” Any examples?
HP: Big data analytics, all you can think of is evaluation of data center capacities or assurance data such as fault, performance, signaling, and more. In particular, with NFV analytics we do evolution of capacity usage (CPU, memory, disk, network) over time. Hence to plan availability and placement of VNF on resources.
What is the requirement of VNF to integrate with HP Director?
HP: Well, we do not see specific requirements. NFV Director is made for multivendor environments, including multivendor VIM (or other virtualization technologies). A general rule of thumb (not NFV Director specific) is a clear separation between the management of its VM (through a VNFM) and the management of its application (through its EMS). The more this is mixed and the more it has vendor specific configurations, the more cost it has to integrate. Using a vendor specific VNFM may be helpful, but in a multivendor IMS, it can become quite complex.
What VNFs does HP Director support today?
HP: We can show this under NDA or in a talk at TMF life. Within the PoCs, we have integrated more than 30 VNFs of different vendors in the domains of EPC, IMS, CPE, CDN, and Gateways. HP has own VNFs, such as vCore, vHSS, vPCRF, vWebRTC, vMRF, vMSE, vSR, vCPE, and vCDN.
If SDN/NFV are implemented, how do they affect the way OTT content providers work today?
HP: We see a lot of new opportunities for CSPs, as well as for OTT players in the market. OTT players may do their own NFV on top of CSP networks, and vice versa, CSPs can provide OTT players NFV.
For E2E performance management, do we need correlation of performance data between VNF manager and VNFI manager? Which entity is responsible for that correlation?
HP: Technically, several variants are possible. It depends on the general principles of the overall OSS. Taking availability monitoring as an example, we suggest a split in that way:
- The VNFM (and NFVO) monitors the VM status (e.g through OpenStack ceilometer) and performs VNF/NS impact analysis. That’s what NFV Director does.
- The NFVI manager monitors VMs and blades, to see, for example, if there are HW failures.
- While the VNFM uses scaling or other mechanisms to fix the problem immediately using other capacities.
- The NFVI domain manager will inform the operator about general NFVI availability or need for HW fixes.
Where does SDN fit in ETSI NFV framework?
HP: ETSI Phase 2 has a WI on SDN. NFV-EVE005 report on SDN usage in NFV architecture. HP (Marie-Paule Odini) is the Rapporteur for this document. This report is considering various usages of SDN: using physical switch, virtual switch, e-switch, and VNF.
What influence will open systems and open source have on the future of SDN/NFV?
HP: HP sees open source projects as truly important for the future of SDN/NFV. They are a way to accelerate the convergence of interfaces around NFV and a way to validate using real code both the completeness and the interoperability of those interfaces.
Does HP director also address grouping and traffic steering?
HP: NFV Director is NFV Orchestrator. Grouping and traffic steering is not directly part of NFVO responsibilities.
How do you see HP leveraging OpenSource projects that are actively developing PoCs based on NFV architecture; such as OPNFV? Will all the HP solutions only interoperate with HP NFV components (NFVO, VIM, VNFs) or will they interoperate with Opensource components such as ODL SDN controllers, OpenStack Orchestrators, etc?
HP: HP is a platinum member of OPNFV and our NFV CTO, Prodip Sen is chairing the OPNFV Board of Directors. HP has seeking open and interoperable solutions and is considering integration not only within HP NFV components, but also with external components, such as external VNFMs today. As components from open source matures, their integration will be duly considered.