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NFV System Software 2.0 Update




Author: Roshan Thekkekunnel, Group Product Manager, NFV Platforms

The HPE NFV System is a turnkey NFV infrastructure platform that includes HPE Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade (carrier-scale open source based cloud management system) and a complete platform integrated and pre-configured for quick, simple NFV deployment. The NFV System delivers pre-packaged, pre-integrated, pre-tested solutions for NFV. These are designed to help communication service providers (CSPs) and network equipment providers (NEPs) accelerate the move from proof of concepts and trials to live deployment of complete NFV solutions. The HPE NFV System is offered in "right sized" bundles of completely tested and integrated hardware and software that allow CSPs to start their NFV journey as small as needed and scale-up as demand grows.

Since the initial announcement of the NFV System v1.0 last summer we have seen good traction for our turnkey systems in all geographies. The HPE NFV System effectively addresses the key pain points for CSPs looking to transition to the NFV cloud. These pain points were primarily around design complexity, software optimization to optimize performance on underlying hardware, high availability design,  lifecycle management, etc. in addition, all of the components used in the HPE NFV system are from the HPE mainstream product portfolio, chosen carefully based on their ability to support NFV workloads. This ensures that our NFV system customers will experience the high quality design from HPE’s industry leading compute/networking/storage solutions while at the same time, take advantage of the price dynamics for the high volume HPE products in the open market. These attributes, combined with the carrier class HPE NFV Solution support offered across the globe and our popular HPE Open NFV partner program where 3rd party VNFs are validated on the HPE Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade platform- have resonated really well with CSPs and partners.

Today, we announced the availability of the new NFV System SW v2.0 for the HPE NFV System. This is an important milestone for the HPE NFV system platform. Fundamentally this software release delivers on three key dimensions that CSPs have been evaluating the NFV solution in the market, namely

1. Open Source

2. Scale

3. Manageability

The Software 2.0 release makes our solution more Open by replacing all proprietary 3rd party SW elements with Open Source based S/W components. This  is an important criteria for a lot of our customers.  It also allows us to provide much tighter support for the NFV System meeting the stringent SLAs required in the telco world.

Secondly, this release will now allow HPE NFV system to ship with our industry leading Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade 2.0 release that enables support for upto 50 compute node management from one OpenStack instance. We are continuing to work on improving scale without compromising on the unique carrier grade features that has made this product a truly differentiated offering for the CSPs across the globe.  In addition to the scale improvements, our HCG 2.0 release bring in new features like PCI pass through and high performance SR-IOV networking.

In this blog I want to draw attention to another key attribute of the NFV system, which is what we term as the NFV System Value Adds. Our vision has been to try and simplify the complexity of the NFVI platform and work towards a single pane of glass management for the entire stack. Our approach has been to develop and add features to our S/W stack that would help with the deployment and management of our NFV System.  As we received feedback from our customers, we have been developing new tools that would simplify the management of the NFV System stack for the operator.

Some of the more complex and time consuming tasks for a NFV cloud standup is the deployment of the S/W stack, optimizing it for the underlying hardware platform, configuring the various S/W components to manage the compute, networking and storage resource pools, etc.  In the first NFV System S/W v1.0 release, we introduced the NFV System Master installer. This tool is used to automate the installation of the various software components on the NFV System Hardware platform. In addition, this Master installer is used to pull in information from a customer intent document to configure and customize the NFV System as per the customer requirement for the datacenter where this System is intended to be developed. As we moved through releases we have added additional tools that simplifies the operations and management of the system – like automated compute node addition, centralized logging for all the SW components in the stack, control plane lifecycle management for the various S/W components, etc. 

With the 2.0 SW release we have extended this capability in this journey to our vision of a truly simplified single management stack. In this release, we have introduced a GUI console to manage all the Physical Infrastructure Management components.  It has three essential views. First, a deployment view that provides information of all the infrastructure components in the NFV system deployment. Second – a health view that shows the status of the various components – from servers all the way down to the NIC level. Finally we have introduced a diagnostic view that gets into details of each component – for example on a compute node – number of VMs, list of VMs running, type of hypervisor, etc. In addition we have introduced features like APIs for backup and restore.

As we continue to evolve the NFV system to better meet the challenges of the Telco cloud, the 2.0 S/W release is an important milestone that will help our customers fully realize the promises of NFV.

Learn more at our HPE OpenNFV website, and follow us on Twitter at @HPE_NFV and @HPE_CSP.


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