Orchestration – Get Ready for the Platform Revolution

TM Forum has published a new report, “Orchestration: Get ready for the platform revolution,” that examines the state of orchestration in service provider networks. Packet Design was a sponsor of the report that was authored by Dawn Bushaus, based on TM Forum research.

The primary research consisted of interviews with 53 people in 33 service provider companies around the world. The findings in the report include:

  • How service providers define orchestration
  • Where orchestration happens
  • Why automation is necessary
  • What the business drivers are
  • How service providers are implementing orchestration
  • What the most important architectural considerations or steps are
  • What the role is for open source and standards

According to the network operators surveyed, the number one business driver for orchestration is agility. For 75 percent of the respondents, agility means the ability to:

  • Deliver services more quickly
  • Offer services on demand, with updates and changes in real time
  • Adapt to new business or market conditions

As we all know, achieving this agility is the real challenge. For a quick snapshot of the other results, see their infographic here. Packet Design sponsored the research, and we wrote a companion piece titled “The Importance of SDN Analytics in Orchestration” (no registration required).

We approach the challenge from the WAN SDN side of things, of course. Service providers cannot live by automation alone at this point. The management challenges are too great, requiring maintaining the same visibility and control over the network that engineers currently have in legacy networks. It also requires infusing programmable networks and applications with the same engineering intelligence that informs current operations.

Our paper covers the SDN analytics required for real-time orchestration and enhanced service visibility across both legacy and SDN network infrastructures. We also analyze the specific challenges service providers face – including running multiple services and applications on a converged network – and some real-world use cases for SDN analytics.

In addition, our CTO Cengiz Alaettinoglu and Sandra O’Boyle, Senior Analyst of Customer Experience and Analytics for Heavy Reading, recently did a deep dive into “Policy-Aware Management and Orchestration for Multi-Service SDNs.” During this webinar, which is available on demand, they explore the critical elements for SDN analytics and automation in multi-service networks, as well as new protocols and open source developments that enable end-to-end service overlays in the WAN.

For more information about how we are helping service providers manage both legacy and SDN-enabled infrastructure, see our SDN Platform page: http://www.packetdesign.com/products/sdn-management-and-orchestration-platform/