What's NFV All About?
EuroBlog Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief 3/1/2013
It has become abundantly clear during the past week at Mobile World Congress that the topic of network functions virtualization (NFV) is going to be a key focus for network operators and their partners and suppliers in the coming years. (See MWC: The Network Blinked.) So it's important at this point to pin down what NFV is/means if it's going to be important. Why the term NFV? Because it is the term used by the network operator members of the Industry Specifications Group formed in late 2012 under the auspices of European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI). When the group was announced it had already put together a white paper on NFV, which included the following definition:
- Network Functions Virtualisation aims to transform the way that network operators architect networks by evolving standard IT virtualisation technology to consolidate many network equipment types onto industry standard high volume servers, switches and storage, which could be located in Datacentres, Network Nodes and in the end user premises... It involves the implementation of network functions in software that can run on a range of industry standard server hardware, and that can be moved to, or instantiated in, various locations in the network as required, without the need for installation of new equipment.
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