Telefónica requires all vendors that want to sell virtual network functions (VNFs) to it to prove their products in Telefónica’s lab. Netscout Systems says that two of its network monitoring products have made the cut.
Telefónica has certified Netscout’s vScout and vStream in its Unica Lab. Unica is the service provider’s network virtualization initiative. And its Unica Lab tests VNFs and software-defined networking (SDN) products. Netscout’s products passed a set of defined tests that demonstrated visibility across physical, virtual, and cloud networks as well as interoperability with other VNFs on the Unica platform.
Bruce Kelley, CTO of service provider business operations at Netscout, said vScout is provided to Telefónica as a Neutron plugin for the service provider’s OpenStack platform. “We installed it, they ran tests, and we got certified,” said Kelley. The monitoring product can be “auto-started and auto-configured, just like any VNF,” he added.
Telefónica also requires that all VNFs for its Unica project be compatible with ETSI’s Open Source MANO (OSM) group. “It’s a requirement to sell to Telefonica,” said Kelley. “You have to get certified in their lab and prove you’re OSM compliant because that’s what they want to use. You don’t get to do anything with Telefónica if you don’t pass these tests. It took about nine months.”
Francisco Javier Ramón Salguero is head of network virtualization at Telefónica and also the chair of OSM.
Antonio Elizondo, who’s responsible for Unica’s VNF certification program, said in a statement, “Netscout is one of the first network and application management vendors certified by Telefonica’s Unica Lab.”
Last year Telefόnica expressed its discontent with vendors that it felt weren’t helping it enough in relation to its implementation of OpenStack. The Spanish telco worked with the research firm Analysys Mason to publish a white paper that spells out the work of its Unica virtualization project. The white paper also spelled out Telefόnica’s gripes with vendors not advancing their technology fast enough for Unica.
Netscout’s Monitoring Products
Kelley describes Netscout’s vScout and vStream as “visibility-as-a-service VNFs.”
vScout software provides visibility for east-west traffic in the data center as well as north-south traffic between cloud and data center environments. “Think of it as a smart tap,” said Kelly. “It acquires the packets and can compute the kpis [key performance indicators] without moving any packets. It’s very lightweight.”
vStream works in conjunction with vScout. “In cases where people want to record certain packets, think of it as a recorder, like a DVR,” said Kelley. “You can go back, and fast forward to see the customer experience.”