Cloud Native Infographic

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NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) and its relation to SDN

NFV is all about visualizing network as seen from the perspective of IT. It leverages standard IT industry virtualization concepts to consolidate many network elements onto industry high volume servers, switches and storage. The network is visualized as servers that will be able to deliver services to operators as they are given by today’s hardware based diverse platforms.
Routers and other Network elements will transform into servers. This will significantly reduce cost, complexity, inventory, space and power requirements of todays’ networks. Anything can be virtualized like routers, firewalls, SGSN/GGSN, Radio Access Network Nodes, eNodeB etc.
It includes the concept of multi-tenancy of a resource which will allow the use of single platform for various applications allowing operators to save costs
How the concept of NFV is different from SDN. NFV does not need SDN for its implementation and vice versa. Both can work independently. However they do have synergies. NFV can work without SDN on the concept used in today’s datacenters. But the concept of SDN in which the data and control plane are separated will greatly enhance performance and facilitate operation and maintenance procedures. The NFV’s focus is on the network element and combined with the forwarding concepts of SDN makes a good combination for deployment. NFV is closely aligned with the SDN concept of using commodity servers and switches.
Operators have already led an initiative and formed an Industry Specification Group (ISG) under ETSI to work for the standardization of NFV. The first meeting of ISG has taken place in January 2013; the group is working on developing broad consensus between Network and IT industries to have a consensus on developing standards related to NFV.

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