& 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.


(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
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
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.
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.
LRTV Custom TV
Nokia Introduces Virtual Service Router for More Rapid Service

4|6|17   |     |   (0) comments


James Cumming, product line manager for virtualized service routers at Nokia, demonstrates how the virtual router based off the Nokia ecosystem changes the network function experience.
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
Time for a Telecom Reboot
Steve Saunders, CEO and founder, Light Reading, 4/19/2017
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
Unlicensed: It's What's Next for US Mobile Operators
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/19/2017
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.