The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) has taken its latest step in assisting the commercialization of SDN in carrier networks, approving a transport SDN framework document that was fed by the results from a large-scale multi-vendor prototype demonstration held last year.
The white paper, "Framework for Transport SDN: Components and APIs," was announced earlier this week. (See OIF Approves Transport SDN Framework.)
Lyndon Ong, co-chairman of the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) Market Awareness & Education Committee (also of packet optical vendor Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN)), tells Light Reading: "This document will help both carriers and vendors place their ongoing SDN efforts within the context of a framework. It recognizes SDN is not a new domain, but rather is being used in multi-domain carrier networks and is integrated across diverse environments, featuring a diversity of vendors and technologies.”
Ong says last year's prototype demonstration succeeded in showing how northbound interfaces and southbound interfaces can allow SDN to be used in a variety of network environments. (See SDN Tests Go Swimmingly, Says OIF and OIF Advancing Transport SDN Agreements.)
"We're looking forward to the next step of defining SDN: working on the northbound interfaces between applications and the SDN control layer, such as a service interface to requesting connectivity or a topology on demand," he said.
The OIF likely will plan another multivendor demonstration on these topics for later this year and will have another document to publish be the end of this year or early next year.
Last year's demonstration featured several companies all at different stages of their own SDN developments -- some just starting out -- but the next one is sure to feature companies further along in their efforts. (See OIF, ONF List Vendors in Transport SDN Demo.)
Ong also realizes that recent SDN progress means a larger number of companies will be interested in participating in the next demonstration. "The more people that are involved in the demonstration, the more complex it can be to carry it off, but we hope to see even more consistency among the participants, with not so many companies at very different levels of adoption and more that are closer to realizing the benefits of SDN," he said.
— Dan O'Shea, Managing Editor, Light Reading