Network monitoring and testing company Exfo integrated its active service assurance product with Amdocs’ NFV software and services portfolio, which is powered by the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP).
In the integration, Exfo is providing active service assurance VNFs through Amdocs’ open network partnership program, said Ken Gold, a solutions marketing leader at Exfo. Through this, its VNFs are included in the Amdocs ONAP platform. “This joint solution provides our carrier customers with an NFV orchestration platform that enables end-to-end, real-time service performance visibility to allow carriers to proactively manage customer quality of experience, throughout the entire lifecycle of the service — in real-time.”
Amdocs launched its NFV software package based on ONAP in September 2017. The package helps service providers design new services based on VNFs, orchestrate them, and operate them. This is done based on modules that manage network interactions. It has a service design and creation module, an active inventory module, and an orchestration module.
The Amdocs software package relies on its open network partnership program to provide VNFs. It ties the VNFs into service provider networks so that service providers can integrate them with existing operational and business support systems.
Exfo is onboarding its virtual Verifier (vVerifier) VNFs into the Amdocs NFV platform. This will enable service providers using the software package to build self-monitoring services and closed-loop operations policies.
According to Gold, vVerifier can perform over 150 active service assurance tests. This includes Layer 2 and 3 tests, Layer 4-7 tests and monitoring — which includes monitoring voice-over-IP (VoIP) quality, DNS availability, and IP video quality. The VNF is managed by Exfo Worx, its test orchestration platform.
The benefits of this VNF in Amdocs NFV “has to do with the changing role of service assurance for virtual networks,” said Gold. As the relationship between service architecture and network architecture changes as a result of SDN and NFV, it is harder, or near impossible, to infer the quality of network services and how a service is routed through a virtual network.
“Essentially, the vVerifier becomes the ‘eyes’ of ONAP, giving it real-time visibility into service quality and network performance,” he said.