& cplSiteName &

MEF Redefining Its Role

Carol Wilson
3/17/2016
50%
50%

Hard on the heels of naming its first-ever CTO, and a plan to move out of its Layer 2 comfort zone, the MEF today announced a series of initiatives aimed at keeping its work relevant in the era of virtualization.

Chief among these are its efforts to enable on-demand services that deliver end-to-end service level agreements for cloud connections, something that doesn't exist today, says new MEF CTO Pascal Menezes, the former principal at Microsoft Skype for Business. In addition, the MEF has finished and is about to publish its Lifecycle Service Orchestration Reference Architecture & Framework, a benchmark in its LSO work, a major focus for the organization. And it is working more actively with open source groups such as ONOS, which is adapting its Central Office Re-Architected as a Data Center (CORD) project to include delivering enterprise services, including Carrier Ethernet.

While enterprises are looking for greater visibility into their network connections into the cloud, telecom network operators can ill afford to become just the pipes into an Amazon, Microsoft or Google Cloud, Menezes tells Light Reading.

"There are no end-to-end SLAs [for cloud connections], which is a very critical thing for businesses," he says. Enterprises want to use Carrier Ethernet, not a best-effort Internet, for their cloud connections but need it to be more flexible and on-demand. "Service providers want more new revenue than just being a bandwidth pipe to the cloud, they want a single platform for multi-services to include service velocity. They want to participate in this new kind of open source cooperation that is going on that [lets them] write their own code and collaborate together and get to innovation faster."

MEF continues to push what it calls the Third Network -- beyond the Internet and CE 2.0 -- to define Layer 3 IP delivered over a single provider network or over multiple interconnected networks. Its LSO initiative includes both the reference architecture and APIs, as well as operational processes and use cases, to deliver practical solutions for both customers and partners. MEF is also promising a methodology for combining the information models of its different projects into a single unified Common Information Model (CIM), to help in aligning information models in larger projects.

The challenge is to be able to apply the qualities it developed for CE 2.0 site to site on a site-to-cloud basis and add the dynamism of on-demand, Menezes says. Enterprises are eager to offload the headache of networking all their sites to a range of hybrid clouds, if they can find connections flexible enough, and service providers they can trust to deliver networks that are optimized to deliver services that meet their specific applications needs.

"This is the Third Network use case," he says. "We see the ideas -- site to site and site to cloud, and a new more automated agile upstream, and a way of orchestrating all of that."


Take a closer look at Ethernet service strategies in our Ethernet services section here on Light Reading.

In order to help with that more dynamic process, MEF will move up the stack and participate in the Layer 4 through 7 processes as well, Menezes promises. It is partnering with the Broadband Forum and with ON.Lab , which developed ONOS and its popular CORD use case, and working with members who are developing their own approach to orchestration of all the moving parts of virtualization.

The organization has other intentions, such as moving its LSO efforts into their next phase, which is developing operational processes and use cases, and using the UNITE program to bring together industry standards and open source players into a common effort. MEF has also launched two opening initiatives of its own, which it is calling OpenCS and Open LSO. The former will define open source software and open source hardware for a network ecosystem that can use NFV and SDN to enable MEF-defined services, such as CE 2.0 and higher-level IP services. The second, OpenLSO, focuses on establishing working open source code for the LSO functions that MEF is specifying, including open standard APIs for legacy and virtualized network infrastructures.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

(5)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Sterling Perrin
50%
50%
Sterling Perrin,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/17/2016 | 2:06:11 PM
Re: Leap of faith
<So the implication is that MEF has outlived its original mission?>

yes, I think that part is clear. The question is whether the organization should adopt a new mission, as it seems to be doing. I think the comparison to the March of Dimes is a good one. 

Sterling
mendyk
100%
0%
mendyk,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/17/2016 | 1:19:27 PM
Re: Leap of faith
So the implication is that MEF has outlived its original mission?
Duh!
100%
0%
Duh!,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/17/2016 | 1:09:21 PM
Re: Leap of faith
Question: What was the mission of the March of Dimes when it was founded in 1938?

Answer: To cure polio

Question: What happened on April 12, 1955?

Answer: Dr. Jonas Salk announced first effective polio vaccine

Question: What happened next?

Answer: Nearly universal immunization of children led to collapse of polio in industrialized countries

Question: Where did that leave the March of Dimes in the early 1960s?

Answer: Without a cause.

Question: What were their options:

Answer: Disband or find another mission

Question: What did they do?

Answer: Changed their mission to reducing birth defects.

End of Allegory.

Standards organizations are highly susceptible to March of Dimes syndrome. MEF is apparently no exception.

 
Sterling Perrin
100%
0%
Sterling Perrin,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/17/2016 | 10:34:58 AM
Re: Leap of faith
My question is: are service providers asking the MEF to come in and fill this role at higher layers? Or is this being driven by the MEF management in an effort to remain relevant?

I'm wondering if work beyond layer 2 is best addressed by the ETSI NFV ISG or the IETF?

Sterling
mendyk
50%
50%
mendyk,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/17/2016 | 9:48:41 AM
Leap of faith
So the end goal here is to enable network operators to create SLAs that include performance elements that are beyond their immediate control?
From The Founder
Either we perform a complete 'factory reset' on the way the telecom industry creates and deploys virtualization, or we face the consequences.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
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.
LRTV Custom TV
The Urgency of Commercial 5G Services

4|26|17   |     |   (0) comments


The progress of 5G has been closely monitored in the industry. At the 2017 Brooklyn 5G Summit, the sense of urgency for a commercial 5G launch had started to surface among operators.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
How Diversity Helps Comcast Mirror Its Customer Base

4|26|17   |   2:55   |   (0) comments


Diversity brings innovation, creative ideas and a way to reflect the broad spectrum of your customer base, Comcast Director of Customer Experience Jenelle Champlin says.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Mobile Operators & Video

4|25|17   |     |   (0) comments


Ovum's Ed Barton discusses the latest mobile operator strategies for mobile video.
LRTV Custom TV
Infinera Introduces Instant Network

4|20|17   |     |   (1) comment


Mike Capuano, vice president of marketing at Infinera, discusses the advancement from Instant Bandwidth to new Instant Network capabilities, which include Bandwidth License Pools, Moveable Licenses and Automated Capacity Engineering (ACE).
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Vodafone's Eubank on Sponsors, Mentors & Moving On Up

4|19|17   |   4:25   |   (0) comments


Vodafone America's Head of Operations Kimberly Eubank breaks down the difference between a sponsor and a mentor and shares why both made a big difference in her career.
LRTV Custom TV
NYC Auto Show: Are We Smart Yet?

4|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


The auto industry is facing some big transformations as electric vehicles, autonomous technology and connected cars are seen as the future of the industry. During the much-anticipated NY international auto show, there was an emergence of new technology and mobility service on the show floor. Aside from performance, brands like Lincoln, Hyundai, Honda, Mercedes and ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Impact of Video

4|18|17   |     |   (0) comments


David Mercer from Strategy Analytics discusses the impact of video on current strategies.
LRTV Custom TV
Pardeep Kohli Discusses Network Transformation & the Market Opportunity for the 'New' Mavenir Systems

4|13|17   |     |   (0) comments


In a brief discussion at MWC 2017, Heavy Reading analyst Adi Kishore talks to Pardeep Kohli, CEO, Mavenir Systems about the creation of the 'new Mavenir' and some of the key challenges facing operators in today's market. A key theme of the discussion centers around operator need for software-only, virtualized solutions and how they will need to adapt to ...
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Tech Maverick Shares Her Tips for Gender Inclusivity

4|12|17   |   7:28   |   (0) comments


Wendy Hall Bohling, a corporate escapee, author and gender exclusivity consultant, tells her story of sexism, bias and progress along the road to gender equality in the workforce.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at MWC 2017

4|11|17   |     |   (0) comments


At Mobile World Congress 2017, the biggest mobile industry gathering of the year, Huawei showcased its new innovations and solutions with the theme "Open Road," which focuses on cloud, 5G, operation transformation, videos and consumer-oriented products. Its campaign has been recognized by three awards given by GSMA.
LRTV Custom TV
China Telecom NFV Infrastructure on RSD

4|6|17   |     |   (0) comments


Lynn Comp, senior director of market development of Intel, is joined by Chong Zhang, storage engineer at Inspur and Ou Li Yan, architect for technology strategies of China Telecom, for a discussion of what NFV brings.
LRTV Custom TV
Nokia's IMPACT Software Demo

4|6|17   |     |   (0) comments


Khamis Abulgubein of IoT market development at Nokia demonstrates IMPACT (intelligent management platform for all connected things), a software solution with a horizontal approach to managing any device on any application.
Upcoming Live Events
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Brazos Hall - Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Surprise! AT&T Markets 4G Advances as '5G Evolution'
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/25/2017
Did Verizon Outbid AT&T for Straight Path?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/25/2017
First Year TIPs the Scale Toward Success
Denise Culver, 4/24/2017
Verizon: Small Biz in Cybercrooks' Crosshairs
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/27/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
One of the nice bits of my job (other than the teeny tiny salary, obviously) is that I get to pick and choose who I interview for this slot on the Light Reading home ...
TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.