& cplSiteName &

Has AT&T ICE'ed VNF Onboarding?

Carol Wilson
2/13/2017
50%
50%

As part of the release of ECOMP (Enhanced Control, Orchestration, Management and Policy) into open source, AT&T will later this year release the software it's been using as part of the VNF on-boarding process called ICE for Incubation & Certification Environment.

That could influence ongoing efforts for the telecom industry to address the need for a common approach to bringing multiple virtual network functions into their networks.

As network operators move to commercially deploy network functions virtualization, they are being stymied by the multiple ways that vendors have created for on-boarding VNFs. Public statements from people such as Chris Rice of AT&T and David Amzallag of Vodafone have identified VNF on-boarding as a critical issue, and one that needs to be solved across the industry. (See AT&T's Rice: Stamp Out NFV 'Snowflakes' and Vodafone: Desperately Seeking Cloud-Centric Tech.)

There are multiple standards development organizations (SDOs) looking at this process, including the MEF and the TM Forum, that are willing to work together on this process.

Speaking earlier this month at AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)'s big 2017 tech statement at its flagship store in San Francisco, Rice said ECOMP, now an open source project under the Linux Foundation, will spell out what a VNF should look like, but there will need to be further action, including something such as ICE, to enable the on-boarding process to be streamlined and automated. (See Will ECOMP Be the Alpha MANO? )

Erik Sundelof, lead engineer on AT&T's Domain 2.0 project, said in an interview at the same event that the ICE software, developed for D2, would be released into open source at mid-year. AT&T has used it so far to do 238 validations of VNFs, including 132 different VNFs -- the difference in the number relates to iterations of the VNFs.


Want to know more about the companies, people and organizations driving developments in the virtualization sector? Check out Virtuapedia, the most comprehensive online resource covering the virtualization industry.


There are three distinctly different things done in the process -- incubation, validation and collaboration -- and Sundelof said AT&T now is able to allow on-boarding in a self-service model and validation by an automated process that has been reduced from an average of 16 downs down to an average of six days.

"The focus of this is to on-board into ECOMP and Domain 2.0 -- that is the focus of what we are doing," he said in an interview with Light Reading. It will be up to the open source community to decide how to utilize ICE once it is released, he added.

ICE was built from scratch, Sundelof said, based on a series of interviews he conducted with all stakeholders -- those internal to AT&T and those at vendors -- to determine how the process had to change.

"When we do physical network functions, we need 18 to 24 months for a version" of gear to be added, he said. "In software, you are looking at two to three months max, with multiple iterations in there. So we had to determine how to make sure that we develop software and virtual functions that can be on-boarded in the most efficient manner possible, so they can focus on the virtual function and not on getting it onto the platform."

The three different key things that are part of ICE -- incubation, validation and collaboration -- are separate processes and not every vendor will use them similarly, Sundelof said, but in general the greatest success in on-boarding VNFs quickly has gone -- not surprisingly -- to those who reached out as early as possible in developing their software to determine what's required.

"We have it set up where they can come here, test it early and get accustomed to what you need to do to get on-boarded," he comments. "Validation is more like we check to see what you are doing and what you need to do in order to work with the platform and get in."

The third step, collaboration, is the vendor and AT&T working together to enable the VNF to accomplish the appropriate commercial goals. ICE is set up to enable that while "keeping every validation secure no one is seeing each other's software, of course," Sundelof said.

"We on-board in a self-service model, we run automation to all of the requirements to do that validation, and we are continuously building out the automation scrips," he said. "When we are now open-sourcing ICE in the second half of this year, we will be releasing all the test scripts, all the experience, all the platform -- every possible thing, in order for everyone to do it all themselves."

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


CALLING ALL CLOUD, NFV AND SDN COMPANIES:
Make sure your company and services are listed free of charge at Virtuapedia, the comprehensive set of searchable databases covering the companies, products, industry organizations and people that are directly involved in defining and shaping the virtualization industry.


(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
abbasabidi
50%
50%
abbasabidi,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/3/2017 | 2:48:23 PM
AT&T onboarded VNFs
Is there a list available for the VNFs AT&T has onboarded to date using ICE?
Solution12143
50%
50%
Solution12143,
User Rank: Light Beer
4/17/2017 | 6:38:20 AM
How many VNFs has ATT deployed?
In search of information about Donain 2.0 project, I coulnd't get the recent information of how many VNFs did ATT deploy at the moment? 

The most recent info is the end of 2015 (21 VNFs) and 86 VNFs planned until the end of 2016. How many VNFs now has ATT really? 
From The Founder
NFV's promises of automation and virtualization are intriguing, but what really excites service providers is the massive amount of money they could save.
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.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
VMWare VP Brings Women Up With Her

8|16|17   |   6:49   |   (1) comment


It's an art and a science to make mentorship, inclusive leadership, diversity and promotion of high-potential women work, says Honore' LaBourdette, vice president of Global Market Development at VMWare.
LRTV Documentaries
5G Spectrum Wars – The Recap

8|15|17   |   2:22   |   (0) comments


Service provider 3 has filed a lawsuit against Ofcom over 5G spectrum auction in the UK.
LRTV Custom TV
Say What? Facebook Unleashes AI Anarchy – The Recap

8|7|17   |     |   (0) comments


A recap of the week's talking points on Light Reading's sister site, telecoms.com. Facebook AI programmers had a bit of a brain-fade as they allowed one of its AI applications to invent its ...
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Fujitsu's Women Band Together to Help Girls Do STEM

8|2|17   |   9:35   |   (1) comment


Supporting women both inside and outside of Fujitsu is a top priority of the telecom vendor. Yanbing Li, Fujitsu Network Communication's director of System Software Development & Delivery, shares why it's important, but why there's still a long road ahead.
LRTV Custom TV
If You're Not First, You're Last – The Recap

7|31|17   |   08:18   |   (1) comment


In case you missed it, Amazon's 1% stock increase helped Jeff Bezos dethrone Bill Gates as the richest man in the world. Also, Taiwanese electronics manufacturer
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
AT&T's Tech President Preps Workforce for the Future

7|26|17   |   5:47   |   (10) comments


AT&T is focused on the software-defined network of the future and is reskilling its workforce to get ready too, according to AT&T's President of Technology Development Melissa Arnoldi.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Cisco: Mentoring Critical to Attract & Retain Women

7|19|17   |   6:40   |   (1) comment


Liz Centoni, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco's Computing System Product Group, shares why mentoring in all its forms is important for women and what Cisco is doing that's made a difference for women in tech.
LRTV Custom TV
Gigabit LTE With Snapdragon 835

7|12|17   |     |   (1) comment


At an event in Wembley stadium, EE used its live network to demonstrate gigabit LTE using a Sony Xperia XZ Premium smartphone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip.
LRTV Custom TV
Implementing Machine Intelligence With Guavus

7|12|17   |     |   (0) comments


Guavus unites big data and machine intelligence, enabling many of the the largest service providers in the world to save money and drive measureable revenue. Learn how applying Machine Intelligence substantially reduces operational costs and in many cases can eliminate subscriber impact, meaning a better subscriber experience and higher NPS.
LRTV Custom TV
Unlocking Customer Experience Insights With Machine Intelligence

7|12|17   |     |   (0) comments


When used to analyze operational data and to drive operational decisions, machine intelligence reduces the number of tasks which require human intervention. Guavus invested in Machine Intelligence early. Learn about the difference between Machine Learning and Machine Intelligence.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Verizon VP Talks Network, Career Planning

7|12|17   |   4:49   |   (0) comments


Heidi Hemmer, vice president of Technology, Strategy & Planning at Verizon, shares how bold bets and the future of tech define her career.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Masergy's NFV Journey

7|11|17   |     |   (0) comments


Ray Watson, vice president of global technology at Masergy, discusses the advantages and challenges in entering the still-maturing NFV market for the past three years.
Upcoming Live Events
September 28, 2017, Denver, CO
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
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
Intel CEO Leaves Trump Biz Advisory Board
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 8/15/2017
Are Cord-Cutting's Days Numbered?
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 8/14/2017
Analyst Nolle: Fundamental Errors Plague NFV
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 8/11/2017
Snapchat Misses Estimates, Eyes Reality Shows
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 8/11/2017
ATIS: Connected Car Security an Industry-Wide Issue
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 8/10/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Animals with Phones
We Know a Tough Day When We See One Click Here
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.