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Broad Industry Support Taking Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) to Next Level

- October 2, 2014 - 0 Comments

Cisco will Leverage OPNFV Efforts in Evolved Services Platform (ESP) Development

Most people following industry trends are aware of the ETSI Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) Industry Specification Group, which was formed in 2012 and kicked off its first set of specifications in October 2013. These documents are commonly used references in the growing movement to utilize NFV for carrier-grade network services.

Great progress has already been made, and Cisco has delivered many innovative NFV solutions via our Evolved Services Platform. To take it to the next level, and realize the full potential of NFV, customers will now start flexibly combining components from different vendors to enjoy the benefits of open source efforts.

Hence the announcement on Tuesday of Open Platform for Network Functions Virtualization (OPNFV), a new open source project focused on accelerating NFV’s evolution through an integrated, open platform.  Cisco is a platinum-level founding member of the project, which will focus initially on the NFV infrastructure (NFVI) and infrastructure management (VIM) of the ETSI NFV Reference Architecture.

Source: Publications and Collateral page at

OPNFV expects to create a cross-project continuous integration framework, as will also ensure cross-project testing.  Naturally, we will work in close partnership with relevant upstream projects such as OpenStack and OpenDaylight (OpenDaylight, like OPNFV, is run by The Linux Foundation) to ensure delivery of a carrier class OPNFV platform. Customers will thus be able to rely on tested, verified architectures for vendor interoperability.

Cisco’s work on OPNFV will ensure that operators have the flexibility to create NFV solutions that transform their business operations and meet their revenue demands.  Notably, the Cisco Evolved Services Platform was built in this very spirit, and in fact has been designed from the ground up to be fully compliant with ETSI NFV, sharing the same concept of modularity and pluggable components, and supporting an open, multivendor environment. The ESP includes elements in the VIM and NFVI that will be part of the initial focus of OPNFV.

Other service solutions for the Cisco Evolved Services Platform (ESP) included virtualized mobile Internet and cloud DVR, and just this week we augmented this portfolio with a new set of virtualized managed services, including a Cloud VPN solution and a security solution. These solutions utilize multivendor network service orchestration using tail-F technology and cloud management technology from Meraki, fulfilling the promises of NFV Management and Orchestration (MANO).

As a platinum member of OPNFV, Cisco is participating on the Board and technical steering committee. Additionally, as CTO Dave Ward stated in the announcement, we’ll be utilizing OPNFV internally to accelerate our ability to bring innovative, interoperable solutions to market. We are doing this so you can be assured that components of our ESP offerings will be constantly integrated and tested in configurations that match the way you want to use them—in heterogeneous environments that meet and exceed your business needs.

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