The ONF and On.Lab initiated their merger a little less than a year ago. By that point, ONF’s role as a cheerleader for software defined networking was becoming obviated given that SDN had gained wide acceptance. The merged entity has two major projects to shepherd: the Central Office Re-architected as a Datacenter (CORD) and the Open Network Operating System (ONOS).
In February, the ONF and On.Lab jointly announced they were working on the ONF Open Innovation Pipeline. The goal is to entice participation in ONF. Through making active contributions to the Open Innovation Pipeline, vendors can benefit from inclusion in CORD and ONOS, thereby gaining access to operator deployments.
Also this week, ONF announced Intel’s first technology contribution. Intel Labs donated its virtualized evolved packet core (vEPC) reference software to the CORD project. The ONF said the contribution broadens the use cases addressed by CORD, adding virtualized mobile core capabilities for delivering services to mobile subscribers.
Intel has long been a vendor partner of the ONF, but its first contribution of technology might help ingratiate the company, at least somewhat, in the open-source community. Its contribution of its Xeon-based vEPC reference software may have been signaled earlier this year when the ONF touted its effort to develop mobile CORD (M-CORD) reference solutions.
Intel Labs’ vEPC reference software is built on the CORD platform and integrated into M-CORD solutions. ONF said this vEPC helps round out M-CORD, making it now possible to build complete open source reference solutions for 5G prototyping.
Updated ONF Projects
The ONF also announced a set of three projects it represented as new, though they’re not quite. The ONF told SDxCentral that the three have been “reformulated for emphasis on open source, restructured into the new ONF project model, and moved into the Apache 2.0 licensing model for greater access and to broaden the community.” The three projects are:
- Open Disaggregated Transport Network (ODTN). This project formalizes the organization’s previously stated intent to figure out open-source solutions to integrate the packet and optical domains in carrier networks that use white box disaggregated optical networking components and SDN control. Part of the challenge is to bring legacy packet optical transport systems, which are usually vendor-specific, under SDN control
- Open Information Model and Tooling (OIM&T). This project aims to evolve industry-wide open information models and associated open source tooling software that is used in developing SDN platforms, frameworks, and interfaces used to control, manage, and orchestrate software defined networks, according to ONF. First defined in the UML modeling language, tools automatically generate Yang and Netconf code intended to update legacy SNMP management standards for the modern era.
- Open Transport Configuration & Control (OTC&C). The goal here is to use the work of the separate OIM&T project to build common configuration and control interfaces for transport networks, specifically for control of L0-L2+ transport technologies, including optical and microwave, according to the organization.
In addition to announcing that AT&T’s Fuetsch was named the organization’s chairman, the ONF said that Turk Telekom (Turkey) recently joined the ONF as a partner member, joining AT&T, China Unicom, Comcast, Deutsche Telekom, Google, NTT Communications, and Verizon. Finally, the ONF has introduced a new set of membership options.