The SDN Approach to IP & Optical Integration
Upskill U | 12/2/2016 | 364 comments
In the early 2000s, interest in implementing IP and optical integration gradually waned over concerns surrounding vendor lock-in, the threat of reduced network capacity, and an inflexible photonic layer. Today, SDN shows real promise in supporting IP and optical integration by enabling management and control across multiple layers. This course will cover past challenges to IP and optical integration, how SDN enables this integration, and benefits like increased network efficiency and better bandwidth provisioning.
SDN & the Software Defined Data Center
Upskill U | 11/30/2016 | 348 comments
The implementation of software-defined architectures in data centers gives operators the tools to not only run agile, virtualized networks but also to quickly adapt to new business requirements. Software-defined data centers (SDDC) provide virtualized resources on a larger scale and on an as-a-service model, enabling service providers and enterprises of varying sizes to advance their virtualization strategies. This course examines how service providers can boost automation, improve security, and lower opex with SDDCs; and addresses the challenges of software-defined data centers for service providers.
SDN & Open Source
Upskill U | 11/18/2016 | 285 comments
One core advantage of SDN is the ability to directly program the network, and quickly add applications on top of the SDN controller. Open source software is emerging as a viable alternative to proprietary automation tools, but telcos grapple with concerns over cost, security, standards and whether or not the software is "carrier-grade." This course will cover open source opportunities for advancing SDN strategies, challenges to implementing open source, key open source projects for SDN, and how telcos are balancing open and proprietary solutions for SDN.
Upskill U | 11/16/2016 | 304 comments
Both NFV and SDN enable rapid innovation at the network and service level, by centralizing network control, automating security functions, speeding service deployment, improving traffic management and more. Yet as virtualization ramps up, service providers are seeking strategies around challenges like vendor selection, incorporation of open source software, and interoperability with legacy equipment. This course covers the core concepts of SDN, networks-as-a-service and network functions enabled by SDN, and explains how telcos can balance the need for increasing network agility with the bottom line. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on SDN.
Open Source for NFV MANO
Upskill U | 11/11/2016 | 191 comments
Open source software is playing an increasingly active role in NFV MANO as service providers utilize the software to advance the interoperability of NFV architectures. Yet operators still have concerns about whether or not open source software meets industry standards, is carrier-grade and meets security requirements, among other challenges. This course covers the growing role of open source in NFV MANO, including use cases, and identifies how operators can successfully implement open source in their NFV strategies.
Upskill U | 11/9/2016 | 311 comments
One of the core challenges service providers face in successfully implementing virtualization is MANO, or management and orchestration, which is the process of transitioning from legacy hardware to virtual machines and the strategic implementation of NFV architecture in the network. MANO unpacks into a plethora of challenges, from the selection to installation to management of technology dedicated to virtualization. This course will cover the three functional blocks of MANO, strategies for integration with open APIs, best practices for utilizing key technologies in MANO and successful MANO case studies.
Security: The Plusses and Minuses of Open Source Software
Upskill U | 10/28/2016 | 251 comments
The most publicized sides of the open source and security argument -- more security risk due to the openness/less security risk because of the extra eyes on the code -- are not the main security issues to worry about when it comes to open source. Distribution can be vulnerable to malicious code; patches can also introduce vulnerabilities; tracking bugs in the code makes bugs more visible; and some developer teams are better than others. This course will look at security and open source and tell both sides of the story.
Security: Tackling DDoS
Upskill U | 10/26/2016 | 218 comments
DDoS attacks have increased 40% over the last two years, according to research from KPMG, and the cost of a breach for a business can average $5 million in operating expenses and lost business, according to IDC. However, solutions are not one-size-fits-all and a mix of solutions must be considered. This class covers how businesses can adopt DDoS countermeasures and redesign their network topology to protect their assets.
Security: Evolving the Data Center
Upskill U | 10/21/2016 | 271 comments
As service providers become reliant on new virtualized network architectures, virtualization, fabrics and clouds, data centers have taken center stage as key elements in network transformation and are more important than ever before. This course looks at how data center security can evolve alongside network transformation and meet stringent security compliances and audits.
Securing a Virtual World
Upskill U | 10/19/2016 | 245 comments
Artificial intelligence and machine learning, or when the software-defined networking (SDN) elements are able to intelligently move, adapt and control the network based on network data and status, are key elements in securing networks in a virtual world. This course will take a look at how securing a virtual network differs from securing a traditional network, and examines the fundamental technical and mindset changes service providers need to make as they prepare for virtualized networks. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on security.
Gigabit & DOCSIS 3.1
Upskill U | 10/7/2016 | 213 comments
The cable industry is ramping up to gigabit speeds with DOCSIS 3.1 deployments and cable providers are revealing their deployment plans, but there are pros and cons, including HFC network upgrades, splitting nodes, switching RF optics, OSS and lack of spectrum. This lecture will delve into DOCSIS 3.1 and where cable is headed with SDN/NFV, software-based networking and other new technologies. Saifur Rahman, Distinguished Engineer at Comcast Cable, and Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader at Light Reading, will co-present this course.
Gigabit & Smart Cities
Upskill U | 10/5/2016 | 218 comments
The idea of a "Smart City" with gigabit broadband speeds for residents and businesses goes deeper than pure entertainment value. In fact, high-speed broadband promises to improve the services cities can offer their communities, from smarter power management and advanced educational opportunities to better transportation control and more effective emergency services. This course will cover smart city transformations underway today, what that transformation looks like from the network side and what the future holds as technology continues to evolve.
Gigabit & the Great Migration
Upskill U | 9/30/2016 | 266 comments
While the technology behind high-speed broadband networks is evolving rapidly, operators face challenges in not only determining the right architectures to support gigabit speeds, but also how to migrate from legacy infrastructure to newer equipment, and how to plan for future upgrades. This class will cover deployments, roadmaps for future technology development, and the best ways to manage ongoing network operations efficiently and cost effectively. Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader at Light Reading, will co-present this course.
Upskill U | 9/28/2016 | 354 comments
From next-generation passive optical networking (NG-PON) to fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) to DOCSIS 3.1 to G.fast, the advances in next-generation broadband technologies are complex and varied and dependent on providers and location. However, all have one thing in common and that's to deliver gigabit speeds to a data-hungry customer base. This course will give a high-level overview of the technology landscape, the challenges and the benefits of each technology, and prepares students for subsequent courses in our Gigabit module.
How to Implement DevOps
Upskill U | 9/23/2016 | 320 comments
In order to implement DevOps, organizations need buy-in from executives, and a strategy for incorporating DevOps into traditional business operations. Identifying key performance metrics is key to presenting the business case for DevOps, keeping a check on progress, eliminating waste and boosting the bottom line. This course will explain how to secure support for DevOps implementation, avoid common pitfalls that arise in DevOps architecture, streamline processes, and more.
What Is DevOps?
Upskill U | 9/21/2016 | 371 comments
DevOps is a popular alternative to traditional product development, and provides an open avenue for development and operations teams - network engineers, IT professionals, and product developers - to collaborate and bring products to market in more efficient, cost-effective ways. When implemented correctly, DevOps promises to speed product development and deployment, unite historically divergent teams, and provide a better framework for anticipating roadblocks and making quick course corrections. This course will explain what DevOps is, the benefits and challenges to implementing DevOps, why and how organizations interpret DevOps differently, and explore case studies of successful DevOps teams.
How to Implement Agile
Upskill U | 9/16/2016 | 207 comments
Implementing Agile is no small feat, but it starts with taking a hard look at current company culture and identifying how that culture may affect adoption of Agile. Without a clear strategy and KPIs, implementation of Agile can easily devolve into an ineffective, confusing process. This course will explain common mistakes and cover the process of implementing Agile, from identifying company culture barriers, to making the business case, to the process behind building effective teams.
What Is Agile?
Upskill U | 9/14/2016 | 349 comments
As service providers devote increasing resources to implementing NFV and SDN, Agile and DevOps have emerged as solutions to the work silos that were heavily utilized when developing traditional networks. Agile is still a very new way of approaching software development, and company culture and confusion over how to implement Agile have created barriers to using this process to its full potential. This course will explain how Agile methods emerged, the Agile Manifesto and 12 Principles, how companies are successfully implementing Agile, and more. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on Agile and DevOps.
Open Source for White Box Networks
Upskill U | 8/18/2016 | 329 comments
Service providers and enterprises are moving away from proprietary purpose-built hardware to "white box" solutions, including servers and switches -- some using purpose-built software and others on open source software -- in order to seek greater efficiencies and new business opportunities. This course will cover the importance of open source software to the white box transformation and how virtualization and evolving standards will impact that transformation overall.
Using Open Source for Data Centers and Cloud Services
Upskill U | 8/17/2016 | 434 comments
Telecom embraced open source in its move to the cloud and has been increasingly active in the open source community as participants and contributors, even creating some of its own open source organizations to address telecom-specific issues. This course will cover how the process is working, what issues still need to be resolved and whether standards bodies are perhaps the better way forward for CSPs.
The Role of Open Source in NFV
Upskill U | 8/12/2016 | 342 comments
Momentum behind open source is growing in the telecom industry, with industry initiatives such as OPNFV seeing robust participation from key vendors. They are taking a page from the IT world by leveraging a more agile, open and collaborative development process, in the hope of providing common building blocks that can be packaged and customized by individual companies. Ultimately, the aim is to reduce development cycle times and deliver new solutions, such as those needed to support NFV. This course will discuss the impact open source is having on NFV platforms and what it means for vendors and operators.
Telcos & Open Source 101
Upskill U | 8/10/2016 | 434 comments
Open source plays a crucial role in moving to a virtualized network architecture. By using open source software, service providers can increase efficiency and agility but reduce cost. There is a huge uptick in service provider interest in the open source process to build their own internal open source competencies, and learn how to operate in new ways. This course will look at how to make the shift from the traditional standards processes, how the open source process is tackling a new role of competing at the higher levels of the software stack and provide understanding in open source licensing and managing R&D processes.
The Central Office Re-Architected as a Data Center
Upskill U | 8/3/2016 | 560 comments
As service providers move to virtualized networks, telco center offices are being re-architected to look like data centers. During this course, you will learn more about why the transition needs to happen now, how to make the transition and what the new central office will look like.
The Changing Face of the Data Center World
Upskill U | 7/27/2016 | 423 comments
The demand for always-on content means greater need for high-speed pipes and distributed content/applications well beyond the large markets, and that is creating new opportunity for national, regional and smaller carriers and data center operators. It is also reshaping the very definition of interconnection, as data center, colocation/carrier hotel, content-delivery networks and "meet-me" capabilities are combined in new and different ways. This course will look at the changing face of competition in the interconnection world and who can capitalize on these new opportunities.
The Future of the Metro Data Center Interconnect
Upskill U | 7/22/2016 | 318 comments
Web-scale players and the emergence of cloud networking are changing the communications landscape dramatically and providing tremendous new growth opportunities in optical networking. On the one hand, web 2.0 giants, such as Google, Facebook and Yahoo, are becoming large buyers of DWDM equipment as they connect their massive data centers across cities and countries. On the other hand, traditional telcos are pursuing their own strategy, increasingly outsourcing data centers and creating a connected intelligent-edge strategy that pushes content and data closer to the customers and still requires high-speed optics. This course looks at the future of metro data center interconnect, primarily from the telcos’ perspective. What lessons can be learned from the web-scale service providers? What should telecom operators do differently to put data, content and network smarts where they are needed most?
Telco Data Center 101
Upskill U | 7/20/2016 | 335 comments
Even as telecom operators embrace IT technology and look to virtualized services and operate them on commodity hardware, the service mix they provide requires more than the typical IT data center infrastructure. While many functions will ultimately be virtualized, many will not – leading to a plethora of dedicated appliances, servers and traditional switches and routers being needed for the foreseeable future. Performance and reliability requirements may also play a role in shaping the data center future for telecom, which may ultimately need a more distributed approach to its data center infrastructure. This course will explore how telecom is evolving its data center strategy to support virtualization as quickly as possible while maintaining service standards and supporting future services. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on the telco data center.
Video: The Case for Virtualization
Upskill U | 7/15/2016 | 364 comments
There is a transformation underway in the video industry toward more flexible operating models, faster service provisioning and greater innovation. Key to this transformation is the virtualization and orchestration of video processing and secure delivery of content. This transformation has the potential to improve the bottom line by making it more profitable to support video services and also improve the top line by enabling new revenue opportunities. This course will highlight the benefits and approach to implementing virtualization and orchestration by focusing on a recent customer case study.
Video: Boosting Customer Experience
Upskill U | 7/13/2016 | 330 comments
With no end in sight, the demand for video over mobile devices has left many service providers looking at their content delivery infrastructure strategies to ensure quality of experience and performance and reduce latency. But not all networks are created equal, and strategies vary based on geographic location, customer preferences and existing network architecture. This course looks at how service providers are addressing critical performance enhancements, the impact on the network and what those enhancements might mean for customers.
Video: The Openstack Approach
Upskill U | 7/1/2016 | 300 comments
Building a virtualized infrastructure based on an Openstack foundation is fundamentally different than traditional data center architectures. But it is essential to delivering the agility and cost optimizations required by today's video providers looking to succeed in the multi-screen and on-demand market where consumers expect new and engaging entertainment to be continually and rapidly refreshed. This course will explore some of the specific approaches taken in transforming the development, integration and implementation of video networking infrastructure for powering some of the most innovative services in the pay-TV market.
Video: The Next Generation
Upskill U | 6/29/2016 | 348 comments
From WiFi to 5G, the next generation of wireless networks, including 5G, has the potential to broaden broadband data networking and boost demand for mobile video exponentially. This course will give an overview of those next-generation wireless networking technologies, the impact on customers and what they mean for service providers as they look to rule the airwaves.
Big Data Analytics & IoT
Upskill U | 6/24/2016 | 430 comments
The linking of capillary sensor networks to the cloud creates the opportunity for huge amounts of data to be aggregated and shared, with resulting insight and potential second order impact on innovation. To get to this stage, however, an integrated IoT and data analytics strategy is required. This course will cover the role of the telco, cloud providers and other stakeholders in this shift. Centralized intelligence vs. the edge of the network will also be addressed.
IoT: Tackling the Security Challenge
Upskill U | 6/23/2016 | 424 comments
The new opportunities of IoT extend not just to those capitalizing on connections, but also to those reinventing themselves to provide solutions for the requirements of our hyper-connected world. While IoT opens up channels of communication that were never possible before -- billions of connected devices allow an unprecedented flow of data it also opens up new points of vulnerability that need to be secured, a new opportunity for those in the security business. This course will look at the various ways to ensure IoT security, including creating partnerships and ecosystems, digital signature and authentication, device management and prevention policies to build security in from the ground up.
Big Data Analytics Meets Customer Experience Management
Upskill U | 6/22/2016 | 331 comments
Embedding analytics into operations to measure and improve customer experience helps to track the customer at every single touchpoint, whether it be in stores, through a mobile app, SMS, email, website or otherwise. Service providers are starting to combine data sets and break down the silos that currently hamper their ability to optimize their data assets, but challenges remain. This course will discuss how CSPs can tackle data integration and the lack of skilled staff and implement strategies that can boost the bottom line.
Big Data Analytics & Network Security
Upskill U | 6/17/2016 | 384 comments
Security is no longer that wall you build around your valuables or the lock on the safe. It is now a distributed architecture of network intelligence and analytics that is constantly looking at traffic and its behavior and assessing whether there are bad actors at work. This course will look at how analytics can be used to strengthen network and advanced threat protection capabilities, and automate threat intelligence to detect, analyze and remediate attacks.
Analytics & Virtualization 101
Upskill U | 6/15/2016 | 224 comments
For virtualization to deliver on its promises to both reduce operating costs and accelerate service innovation, network operators need to be simultaneously developing their big data and advanced analytics capabilities. These two critical components in the world of NFV and SDN provide the context for service management, self-optimization and self-healing networks. This course will examine the fundamental questions as to the role of big data and advanced analytics and explain what service providers need to be doing as they prepare for virtualized networks. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on analytics.
Assuring Security in a Cloud-Based NFVi
Upskill U | 6/13/2016 | 125 comments
Separating a software-based network function from its known hardware execution environment and running it in a relatively unknown cloud environment can be a scary proposition, introducing potential new security vulnerabilities and a rapidly changing environment to secure. Assembling and orchestrating all the right security components to provide VNFs and their underlying execution environments with the right level of security is a large challenge. This course will discuss ways of ensuring that security is preserved in the NFV environment and the security orchestration and other technologies needed for virtual networks.
Ethernet & the Cloud
Upskill U | 6/10/2016 | 181 comments
The rapid rise of cloud services pushed Ethernet service providers to make their services available on-demand. Now the rise of virtualization is creating new demand for network-as-a-service options that combine physical and virtual network elements flexibly, while also delivering on the quality promises for which Carrier Ethernet has become known. This course looks at how that will happen and what network operators need to be doing now to prepare.
LIVE AT BCE - Mobile Video: Finding a Solution
Upskill U | 5/25/2016 | 85 comments
Viewers are increasingly seeking alternatives and complements to conventional TV, with an ever-growing number of mobile-first video viewers, especially in the highly targeted 18-to-34 age group. An IAB study reported that more than one third of smartphone users watch long-form videos every day on their mobile devices. Together, Saini and Alan Breznick, Light Reading, will discusses how mobile operators are dealing with the challenges of the increase in video traffic on their networks while exploring new approaches to monetizing it. Course participants will gain an understanding of how mobile operators are delivering a high-quality video viewing experience while making the cost of carrying video commensurate with the revenues from mobile TV services. These approaches are enabling mobile operators to pursue new win-win relationships with content providers, attract and grow new subscribers and gain new revenues from mobile video services.
LIVE AT BCE - 5G: Are We There Yet?
Upskill U | 5/24/2016 | 94 comments
While a majority of mobile operators are still deploying 4G networks and transitioning to LTE mobile data services, the standards community, including NGNM and 5GPPP, has already turned its attention to developing 5G standards, and some service providers, including AT&T, SK Telecom and Verizon, are touting 5G trials. 5G networks will be capable of supporting trillions of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, and high-definition and ultra-high-definition (4K) video to smartphones and tablets due to exponential improvements in scale, throughput and latency. Along with the obvious evolution of the radio air link, the NFV and SDN technologies will play a critical role in 5G architectures. With 5G services expected to begin launching in 2020, now is the time for service providers to begin preparing. Verizon's Flynn and Gabriel Brown, Senior Analyst, Heavy Reading, will discuss the current state of requirements for 5G, and how SDN, NFV and other industry trends, such as mobile edge computing (MEC) and big data analytics, will all play an integral role in the delivery of 5G services.
Cloudifying the Network
Upskill U | 5/20/2016 | 176 comments
The network of networks becomes critical at a time when enterprises want to connect to multiple clouds and do it on-demand and in a secure, reliable fashion. This course looks at how interconnection is evolving to meet the on-demand enterprise requirements, including the evolution of exchanges and the expansion of traditional colocation.
Cloud Platforms & Services: 101
Upskill U | 5/18/2016 | 230 comments
Once an enterprise-only concern, cloud has made its way into the heart of service provider operations and is a key part of the service provider's transformation to virtualized, all-IP networks. However, many service providers are finding themselves ill-equipped to handle the transformation on all fronts -- including skillsets and culture. This introductory course will cover all the important aspects of transforming to cloud-based networks and services, including what it means for service providers, why it's important, how it's impacting the industry, the challenges and benefits and more. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on cloud platforms and services.
IoT: The Impact of Industrial IoT
Upskill U | 5/13/2016 | 234 comments
Despite the hype surrounding connected homes and consumer electronics, the biggest transformations and economic impact will be industrial IoT (IIoT) applications. From lowering the cost of providing effective and efficient healthcare to the provision of safe water and food to a growing global population, IoT will underpin the fabric of modern society. CIOs will become the essential lynchpin to ensuring secure connectivity and the management of data to provide the insights necessary for product and service development and delivery. This course will cover how service providers can work most effectively as partners in this process to be vital players in this landscape.
IoT: Evolving Networks to Meet the Opportunity
Upskill U | 5/11/2016 | 224 comments
IoT is neither a single technology nor a single market; it is a mishmash of networks, systems and technologies, enabling a plethora of market opportunities in multiple industries. This course will examine how operators’ networks will need to evolve in order to address this diverse IoT opportunity, realizing that the solutions that need to be delivered will draw on all parts of the network but will require complex interactions not previously anticipated. It will also address key questions as to how accelerating NFV and SDN will enable IoT configuration agility and smart service flexibility for vertical industries, as well as challenges in the transition to virtualization.
Upskill U | 5/4/2016 | 266 comments
The Internet of Things (IoT) is promising to explode over the next three to five years, and service providers and enterprises are rushing to grab a piece of the trillion-dollar market. But haste may make waste in the IoT space due to serious concerns around security and network readiness. While 5G may offer some respite, 5G is still a long way off and providers need to make changes now to prepare for the 21 billion connected devices expected to hit by 2020. This introductory course taught by Ericsson will cover all the important aspects of IoT, including what it is, why it's important, how it's impacting the industry, the challenges and benefits and more. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on IoT.
Upskill U | 4/29/2016 | 283 comments
One of the key benefits of a virtualized network is automation -- for everything from security to analytics to provisioning services and more. In addition, automation helps control expenses: automating tasks and processes lower cost, automation ensures adherance to standards and policies and automation speeds new service delivery. However, a good virtualization strategy is required to truly beneft. This course will delve into the details of automation, how service providers can benefit from automation and what a good strategy looks like.
Virtualization: Network Design & Infrastructure
Upskill U | 4/25/2016 | 299 comments
Building a virtualized, all-IP network is fundamentally different than a traditional TDM-based network, but in order to achieve capex and opex benefits as well as ensure customer experience, service providers are under pressure to get it right. Industry players are taking different approaches to the critical questions around how to build an NFV infrastructure and where to start. This course will look at various approaches, key goals and challenges and provide insight into which strategy is best for specific network operators.
Virtualization: Webifying the Network
Upskill U | 4/22/2016 | 321 comments
As traditional networks move to all-IP virtualized networks, service providers are moving to new business and operational models similar to those of the web-scale giants of Google and others. While the opportunity is great, the challenge is equally great due to the many facets of transformation, including provisioning and deploying services, cultural changes, DevOps and Agile methodology and new developments like IoT. During this course, students will gain insight into how the web-scale giants operate, and steps they can take to transform their own companies, departments and businesses to reach the same heights.
Upskill U | 4/20/2016 | 505 comments
This introductory course will cover all the important aspects of virtualization, including what it is, why it's important, how it's impacting the industry, the challenges and benefits and more. It will also give a high-level overview of key aspects to consider when moving to a virtualized infrastructure, such as analytics, security, how to take the first steps and where virtualization will have the most impact first. This course prepares students for subsequent courses on virtualization.
From The Founder
Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators.
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
Upcoming Live Events
March 21-22, 2017, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
March 22, 2017, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
March 22, 2017, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders chats with Sportlogiq CEO Craig Buntin about sports data analysis.
Eyal Waldman, CEO of Mellanox Technologies, speaks to Steve Saunders, CEO of Light Reading, for an exclusive interview about the 100 GB cable challenge, cybersecurity and much more.