Géant, telcos deploy open-source SDN network in Europe

News

Research and education network Géant and an industry group backed by several telcos have deployed an open-source, software defined networking (SDN) operating system in Europe in a bid to develop new virtual applications.

The Open source SDN Network Operating System (ONOS) has been deployed on Géant Testbeds Service (GTS), a virtual network environment built on the OpenFlow standard.

It is designed to allow R&D departments to develop, test and deploy virtual services “quickly, easily and cost-effectively.”

The ONOS project, which has the backing of companies including AT&T, China Unicom, Cisco, Ericsson Huawei and Intel, has been designed for service provider networks.

Géant’s network, meanwhile, interconnects Europe's national research and education networks, comprised of over 50 million users at 10,000 institutions across Europe in the fields of energy, environment, space and medicine.

Bringing the two together means developers can connect to “network slices” on the GTS and access self-contained networks where new technologies and applications can be tested.

Géant is also running a new Inter Cluster ONOS Network Application (ICONA), developed by CREATE-NET and the University of Rome Tor Vergara, which it said improved intercommunication between ONOS clusters and delivered faster response times to network issues.

University of Rome Tor Vergata Professor, Stefano Salsano, said: “We are proud to participate in the efforts of the ONOS community towards the realisation of a production-ready platform that meets the operators' requirements while remaining fully open to researchers."

Jerry Sobieski, GTS Activity Leader, added: “[This is] a great example of emergent network paradigms that would be difficult or impossible to test or evaluate at full European scale without the infrastructure provided by the Géant network and the virtualisation capabilities provided by the Géant Testbeds Service.

“This allows us to showcase both the advanced capabilities ONOS delivers as well as the advanced capabilities of our testbed. Géant’s mission is to facilitate this type of leading edge global network research to help deliver the next generation of networking.”