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The Rise of Open: OpenDaylight and OPNFV

The rapid innovation that we saw with OpenDaylight’s open SDN platform in the past year has changed the networking industry forever. An industry that had been fairly stagnant and slow to change is now embracing open source as the de facto way to achieve innovation and interoperability for SDN and is turning to open source again to achieve the same level of innovation for Network Functions Virtualization (NFV).

Today the Linux Foundation launched a new open source collaboration called Open Platform for NFV (OPNFV). Like Linux and OpenDaylight, this new effort brings together a wide range of industry players to collaborate on a carrier-grade integrated open source reference platform for NFV. The plan is to leverage many existing open source technologies as a base for the new platform including OpenDaylight and OpenStack. I expect you’ll soon see close collaboration between all our communities.

OPNFV brings all the right people to the table: telecom, cloud and infrastructure players, developers and users that will work together to define a new type of reference platform. I was honored to be asked to provide guidance and input to the Linux Foundation and number of key participants as they worked to put together this project. Everyone involved is committed to fostering open collaboration and supporting innovation in the networking industry.

Since I took my role I have been in constant discussions with carriers and service providers keen to bring network programmability and service agility to their networks. One recurring theme has been around how quickly we could move from providing core technology that supports and enables SDN and NFV to providing solutions that carriers could deploy into their environments. Carriers also shared with me they have some very different needs and requirements compared to the broader enterprise and data center markets. The formation of OPNFV is a key step toward tackling the problems of the world’s leading carriers head-on and thus accelerating their adoption of SDN and NFV.

As the entire industry moves to an “open first, not proprietary first” model for delivering SDN and NFV, I look forward to collaborating with OPNFV and others to deliver a truly open networking platform that will benefit enterprises, data centers and carriers alike.