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Open Networking Foundation

Innovation and Development through Collaborative Effort

The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) is a non-profit consortium comprised of various leading network operators to drive the transformation of network infrastructure and carrier business models.

 

It is an open, collaborative, community and initiator of a number of projects building solutions by leveraging network disaggregation, white box economics, open source software and software defined standards to accelerate the evolution of the industry. Currently, the organization counts 85 partner and member companies and 150 collaborating companies.

 

In the following you will find a short overview about the realized open source components (ONOS, VOLTHA, Trellis, Stratum) and integrated platforms constructed from those components (ODTN, CORD, M-CORD, R-CORD, E-CORD).

STRATUM

Stratum is an open source switch operating system for software-defined networks and was developed in the context of the Stratum Project by the Open Networking Foundation. The members of the project intended to create a silicon-independent reference implementation for white box switches supporting the most possible SDN interfaces and to run on existing fixed systems, as well as on state-of-the-art programmable silicon. Stratum is a versatile platform leveraging the capabilities of other open source projects, such as P4, ONIE and ONL. It enables swift integration of devices into network infrastructures, and provides an open source solution for fully-programmable data planes.

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  • Provides an open source solution for fully-programmable data planes
  • Provides a diversity of choice for operators
  • Includes full lifecycle control, configuration and operations interfaces
  • Implements the latest SDN-centric northbound interfaces, including P4, P4Runtime, gNMI/OpenConfig, and gNOI
  • Enables easy integration of devices into operator networks
  • Cloud SDN Data Plane
  • Cloud SDN Fabric Platform (complete open source solution for next-gen data center spine-leaf fabrics)
  • Operator Edge Cloud Platform for 5G Mobile and more, increasing scalability and cost efficiency of edge clouds with VNFs in the P4 fabric
  • Acts as an embedded controller within a switch replicating traditional management and control

Stratum is an open source project launched in 2018 by the Open Network Foundation (ONF) to develop a diverse, innovative ecosystem leveraging SDN networking. Supporters and participators are renowned industry leaders such as Google, Tencent, Big Switch Networks, Delta, Edgecore Networks, Barefoot, Broadcom, Mellanox and others. Stratum solutions are designed to be available on the broadest possible variety of networking hardware from diverse ODM vendors, regardless if it is an existing deployed system or a state-of-the-art programmable silicon.

The Stratum operating system will be available for the STORDIS Advanced Programmable Switches (APS), feature-rich and powerful open networking switches with a P4 programmable Barefoot Tofino™ chipset, supporting PTP time sync and 1GbE to 100GbE throughput.

VOLTHA™ – VIRTUAL OLT HARDWARE ABSTRACTION

vOLTHA™ is layer of abstraction atop legacy and next generation network equipment and provides a common, vendor agnostic, GPON control and management system, for a set of white-box and vendor-specific passive optical network hardware. It is intended to support other access technologies like EPON, NG-PON2 and G.Fast as well in the near future.

On its north-bound interface, vOLTHA provides a set of abstract APIs which north-bound systems can interact with the PON networks and appears as a programmable Ethernet switch to an SDN controller. On its south-bound side, vOLTHA communicates with PON hardware devices using vendor-specific protocols and protocol extensions through OLT and ONU adapters.

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  • Flexible and agile service adaptation at the cost of commodity servers and white box switches
  • Next-generation optical access system architecture, based on SDN/NFV technologies
  • Acts as a multi-vendor, multi-domain reference implementation for the central office
  • Provides isolation between an abstract (vendor agnostic) PON management system
  • “Access as a Service”
  • Access as a Switch: Makes an access network look like an abstract programmable switch
  • Evolution to virtualization: Works with legacy as well as virtualized devices and runs on the device, on general purpose servers, or in a virtualized cloud
  • Unified OAM abstraction: Provides unified, vendor/technology agnostic management interface
  • Unified OAM abstraction: Provides unified, vendor/technology agnostic management interface
  • DevOps bridge to modernization: Brings the latest development techniques to telecommunications

vOLTHA™ is an open source project to create a hardware abstraction for broadband access equipment. It supports the principle of multi-vendor, disaggregated access devices for the Central Office. The host of this project is the CORD project (opencord.org) initiated by the Open Networking Foundation in 2017. Around 30 members from various renowned organizations such as Deutsche Telekom, AT&T, Radisys, Turk Telecom and the ONF.

ONOS™

Open Network Operating System (ONOS™) is an open source SDN controller for building next-generation SDN/NFV solutions. ONOS is a scale-out architecture designed to build carrier-grade solutions that leverage the economics of white box merchant silicon hardware while offering the flexibility to create and deploy new dynamic network services with simplified programmatic interfaces. ONOS supports both configuration and real-time control of the network.

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  • ONOS includes a platform and set of applications that act as an extensible, modular, distributed SDN controller
  • Simplified management allows applications to configure and control the network without becoming dependent on device specifics
  • The distributed core provides high-availability, scalability and performance
  • ONOS puts a wide range of use cases forward and has been embedded in a number of operator and vendor SDN controller solutions. There are two particular projects where ONOS has become a key enabler and an integral part:
    • CORD: ONOS is the networking platform for use cases of Central Office Re-architected as a Data center in the residential, mobile and enterprise domains
    • ODTN: multi-layer SDN network solution integrating the packet and optical domains with white box disaggregated hardware to build next-generation wide area networks (WANs)

ONOS was initiated in 2014 by leading service providers, network vendors, R&E network operators and collaborators in the context of the Open Networking Foundation. It is a multi-module project whose modules are managed as OSGi bundles. It provides the control plane for a software-defined network (SDN), managing network components, such as switches and links, and running software programs or modules to provide communication services to end hosts and neighboring networks. The project is continuously maintained by an expanding community of developers and users encouraging discussion, development, documentation and improvement.

Trellis™

Trellis is an open-source SDN-based, multi-purpose L2/L3 spine-leaf switching fabric for data-center networking. Leveraging the ONOS controller, it creates a non-blocking fabric for data centers using white box switches and open source software. The architecture optimizes all internal communication paths, while simplifying connections to the rest of the network.

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  • Distributed Virtual Routing for tenant networks
  • Optimized delivery of multicast traffic streams
  • Provides and coordinates both an underlay network and multiple tenant overlay networks to optimize resource deployment and connectivity
  • Can be used independently for general purpose data center networking requirements
  • Simplifies the switching nodes and how the fabric connects to the external network
  • Simplifying data center infrastructure by providing a complete solution for interconnecting servers, applications, VMs and containers with dynamically created tenant domains and service-chains
  • Trellis enables the network infrastructure for CORD by eliminating complex control protocols in the fabric nodes, reducing costs and risk of software failure, and providing a holistic optimized environment, high application performance, and simplified management

The project was initiated in December 2017 in the context of the Open Network Foundation together with contributing partners such as Comcast, Nokia, Broadcom and Edgecore. The goal was to create a holistic, multi-purpose spine-leaf solution to eliminate the need for more powerful CPUs, memory and the complexity of interconnection.

P4 devices are supported by ONOS using Trellis applications. P4 program deployment and pipeline configuration allow new functionality on hardware devices to run programmable chips such as Barefoot Tofino™, Cavium Xpliant and Mellanox.

SEBA (SDN-Enabled Broadband Access)

SEBA is an Exemplar Platform based on a variant of R-CORD supporting virtualized access technologies at the edge of the carrier network. It was built by the ONF and CORD (Central Office Re-architected as a Datacenter) community and supports both residential access and wireless backhaul.

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  • Kubernetes based
  • High Speed
  • Operationalized with FCAPS and OSS Integration
  • Traffic does not require VNF processing on a server
  • Network Edge Mediator included
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