& cplSiteName &

Google to Open Key Network Models for Industry Comment, Standardization

Carol Wilson
6/17/2014
50%
50%

CHICAGO -- Light Reading's Big Telecom Event -- Google is opening the network configuration data and network topology models that it's been developing for years, publishing the model for comment and contributions by others.

Speaking in a keynote presentation here and in an interview afterward, Bikash Koley, principal architect and manager of network architecture at Google (Nasdaq: GOOG), said the Internet firm realized it needed the input of other large network operators to define vendor-neutral network data and network configuration models that will enable a "true software-defined network model" and a better Internet.

"We have been working on this for many years, but we realized that, if we have any hope of having a common description for networks and equipment, we need to open this up," Koley said in an interview after his speech. "We want to jump start this process, to get it moving, and we are absolutely open to working with other large carriers to get this done."

To that end, Google will make its models public, most likely this summer, and open for discussion in standards bodies, most likely starting with the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) . The models are based on protocol buffer, a structured data format developed by Google that has an open format and has been published for general use.

The industry, Koley explained, talks a lot about the network data plane and the network control plane, but it tends to hand wave over the management plane in SDN. The management plane is extremely important, however, because it defines how services and applications are orchestrated. "In order to run a large infrastructure, you need abstraction. In order to implement abstraction, you need models," said Koley. "Those models don't exist in the network layer today." The network configuration and network topology models are essential to Google in its efforts to build multi-layer, vendor-neutral networks that allow carriers who swap traffic to do it more optimally and improve the end-user experience.

"We all benefit from a better Internet," he said.

In his keynote, Koley spoke in a rapid-fire keynote about SDN, or "as we call it at Google, just networking." The company's experience comes from rolling out its own wide-area software-defined network known as B4, a network that went into production in early 2011. (See How Do You Get to SDN From Here?.)

Through the B4 deployment process, Google discovered both the significant advantages of SDN – like the benefits of having a common network operating system and common network APIs – as well as the many areas where major technology gaps still exist.

Google has made limited progress in the management plane, where Netconf is a promising option but needs universal adoption, and very limited progress toward the standard network data model. In this arena, Yang as a data modeling language holds promise, but there still needs to be vendor-neutral ways to describe network/device configuration, he said, along with a standard network topology model.

In today's network, the network state is detected by information provided by routing devices, but those are based on vendor proprietary approaches. What's lacking is a vendor-neutral network model that also covers all the layers of the network, including legacy devices.

"The second thing we discovered is that, if you try to build a model which is multi-layer and scales to a global network with thousands of end points, you need a data structure and messaging format that is extremely optimized," he said. "We have tried doing it in Yang and UML [unified modeling language], but those are bulky, and it's hard to describe."

Ultimately, any device built for the network must match the network model and be standard, Koley said, in the same way that, in today's Windows world, devices built to predefined network and data models and can be plugged into a system easily and work from day one as expected.

One major benefit to major network operators of establishing these network configuration data and topology models is that it will make it easier for them to abstract their legacy network systems as part of the process of moving to virtualized networks. "We want a model that can describe anything from layer 0 to layer 7," he said.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading and Mari Silbey, special to Light Reading

(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
nwauters
50%
50%
nwauters,
User Rank: Light Beer
7/27/2014 | 4:11:48 AM
Why not reuse existing network models?
Any clue why TMF forum standards like MTNM or ITU recs  G.803/805 are not an option?

They are not recent but create a good multi layer and vendor neutral abstraction of the network allowing a.o to model the topology of the WAN. From layer 0 up to layer 2/3 they are quite powerfull and the basis of a lot of existing software.

Nico Wauters / NetworkMining
Ariella
50%
50%
Ariella,
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/17/2014 | 7:26:47 PM
Re: Why now?
I'm not quite clear on what the last part of this means: ""We have tried doing it in Yang and UML [unified modeling language], but those are bulky, and it's hard to describe."

What exactly is hard to describe? 
Atlantis-dude
50%
50%
Atlantis-dude,
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/17/2014 | 5:24:33 PM
Why now?
Models have existed in various forms and in various degrees of standardization. Will goog bring out its own devices too that supports them?
From The Founder
Light Reading sits down at CES with the head of Cisco's service provider video business, Conrad Clemson, to discuss how NFV and cloud security relate to video, the challenge of managing 4K/8K traffic, the global expansion of Netflix and virtual reality.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
LRTV Documentaries
All Change in Video

2|11|16   |   33:12   |   (1) comment


At this moderated panel at 2020 Vision in Dublin, Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader of Light Reading, sits down with Jeff Finkelstein, director of network architecture at Cox Communications, to discuss the rapidly changing video market.
LRTV Custom TV
Hosting in Ireland, Past & Present

2|10|16   |   16:07   |   (0) comments


Garry Connolly, president of Host in Ireland, presents the keynote at Light Reading's 2020 Vision Executive Summit in Dublin.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
What's Hot in Mobile Commerce?

2|10|16   |   12:18   |   (1) comment


Claire Maslen, financial services relationship manager at the GSMA, talks about the development of the digital commerce sector and the types of relationships that mobile operators are developing to further their m-commerce strategies.
LRTV Documentaries
EANTC Tests Nokia IP Routing & Mobile Gateway VNFs for Real World Deployment

2|9|16   |   5:08   |   (1) comment


Nokia obtained validation of its virtualized router and virtualized mobile gateway capabilities through rigorous testing performed by EANTC. The results set a new industry benchmark for outstanding performance, scalability, resiliency and manageability. Nokia VNFs are ready for telco cloud deployment, so that service providers can accelerate mobile, business and ...
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Level 3's Jack Waters

2|8|16   |   26:15   |   (1) comment


Light Reading CEO and founder Steve Saunders sits down with Level 3 Communications' CTO Jack Waters to discuss hot topics like virtualization, 4K and the future of telecom...
LRTV Custom TV
The Composable Telco

2|8|16   |   24:46   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Principal Analyst Caroline Chappell presents the keynote at Light Reading's 2020 Vision Executive Summit in Dublin.
LRTV Custom TV
Join Us at the Digital Operations Transformation Summit

2|4|16   |   03:52   |   (0) comments


The Digital Operations Transformation Summit on February 21, 2016 at the Crowne Plaza Barcelona Fira Centre will bring together 50 senior executives to engage in a unique debate on the opportunities and challenges presented by the transformative evolving digital landscape. RSVP now at events@lightreading.com.
LRTV Custom TV
Making the Test: ADVA Ensemble Connector vs. Open vSwitch

2|4|16   |   01:28   |   (0) comments


Light Reading, in partnership with EANTC, recently tested ADVA's Ensemble Connector, which replaces open vSwitch and offers carrier-grade capability and interoperability. The test results strengthen ADVA's credibility as a provider in the virtualization space.
LRTV Custom TV
Bridging the Gap Between PoCs & Deployment in NFV

2|4|16   |   31:50   |   (0) comments


Charlie Ashton of Wind River presents the keynote at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Dublin.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Mike Aquino

2|3|16   |   17:34   |   (0) comments


The former CEO of Overture Networks, Mike Aquino, discusses why truly open virtualization solutions provide service providers with the greatest choice.
Shades of Ray
MWC: Buckle Up for 5G & the IIoT

2|2|16   |   02:28   |   (0) comments


This year's Mobile World Congress looks set to be a 5G land grab and a chance to get down and dirty with the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) – but what will the 5G discussions actually be about?
LRTV Custom TV
Case Study: Building China's Next-Gen TV Networks

2|2|16   |   5:01   |   (0) comments


With over 2 billion viewers worldwide, Shenzhen Media Group is one of China's largest content producers. By partnering with Huawei and Sobey, SZMG was able to modernize media operations with the Converged News Center, a production studio that is a model for next-generation workflows.
Upcoming Live Events
March 10, 2016, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 5, 2016, The Ritz Carlton, Charlotte, NC
May 23, 2016, Austin, TX
May 24-25, 2016, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Hot Topics
Yahoo & Verizon Sitting in a Tree...
Brian Santo, Senior editor, Test & Measurement / Components, Light Reading, 2/8/2016
AT&T Lights Fire Under 5G, Plans 2016 Trials
Iain Morris, News Editor, 2/12/2016
Vodafone: Flexible Work Policies Boost Profits
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/8/2016
It's Time to Integrate OTT Video
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 2/8/2016
Andreessen Facepalms on Facebook Free Basics
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 2/10/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading CEO and founder Steve Saunders sits down with Level 3 Communications' CTO Jack Waters to discuss hot topics like virtualization, 4K and the future of telecom...
The former CEO of Overture Networks, Mike Aquino, discusses why truly open virtualization solutions provide service providers with the greatest choice.
Live Digital Audio

Broadband speeds are ramping up across Europe as the continent, at its own pace, follows North America towards a gigabit society. But there are many steps to take on the road to gigabit broadband availability and a number of technology options that can meet the various requirements of Europe’s high-speed fixed broadband network operators. During this radio show we will look at some of the catalysts for broadband network investments and examine the menu of technology options on offer, including vectoring and G.fast for copper plant evolution and the various deployment possibilities for FTTH/B.