Container Network Functions: Bringing NFV to the Network Edge

Richard Cziva, Dimitrios P. Pezaros
2017 IEEE Communications Magazine  
In order to cope with the increasing network utilization driven by new mobile clients, and to satisfy demand for new network services and performance guarantees, telecommunication service providers (TSPs or telcos) are exploiting virtualization over their network by implementing network services in Virtual Machines (VMs), decoupled from legacy hardwareaccelerated appliances. This effort, known as Network Function Virtualization (NFV) reduces OPEX and provides new business opportunities. At the
more » ... ame time, next generation mobile, enterprise, and Internet of Things (IoT) networks are introducing the concept of computing capabilities being pushed at the network edge, in close proximity of the users. However, the heavy footprint of today's NFV platforms prevents them from operating at the network edge. In this article, we identify the opportunities of virtualization at the network edge and present Glasgow Network Functions (GNF), a container-based NFV platform that runs and orchestrates lightweight container vNFs, saving core network utilization and providing lower latency. Finally, we demonstrate three useful examples of the platform: IoT DDoS remediation, on-demand troubleshooting for telco networks, and supporting roaming of network functions.
doi:10.1109/mcom.2017.1601039 fatcat:rh2b4wgokfchrayybkqq6duxpe