As we have described, the ETSI architecture has gone a long way to defining the NFV platform. And at the same time, we have seen a number of MANO projects push the definition of what MANO covers–mostly out of necessity to make NFV deployable, manageable and productizable.
One of the main goals of operators is to accelerate the development of a “carrier class” platform that can deliver better scale and reliability than Open Stack, one of the most popular Open-source NFV platforms. Another goal is to create sufficiently rich MANO and NFVI open-source systems that replace portions of proprietary hardware management platforms as well as OSS and BSS stacks. As these Open-source projects grow, technology vendors are positioning themselves as well, borrowing some open-source technologies as well as presenting their own improvement through integration. The result is an explosion of different approaches and competing technologies.
There has been an explosion of NFV-related open-source projects in the last few years. First came the SDN open-source projects, OpenDaylight and ONOS, which form the foundations of many NFV deployments. Then in 2014, the Linux Foundation announced the Open Platform for NFV Project (OPNFV), an open-source, carrier-grade integrated platform that aims to help bring new NFV products and services to the industry faster. Since then, a number of operators have released their own technology into the open-source market. Some of these include ECOMP (AT&T–subsumed under ONAP), Open-O (China Mobile-subsumed under Linux Foundation’s ONAP), TCS Telco Cloud (Tata), Gohan (NTT), and OpenMANO (Telefónica-subsumed under ETSI OSM).
Although ETSI has made efforts to integrate these open-source projects into its community and promote a concerted effort on standards, it’s clear that open-source projects can take on a life of their own. On top of ETSI, the other organizations coming into prominence in NFV include the MEF with its OpenLSO and Linux Foundation with many significant projects of relevance to both NFV and SDN.