Automating Service Creation and Provisioning for Creative Ethernet Services (2017)

By John Hawkins, Ciena

Ethernet service uptake continues on the rise, especially among the small and medium business segments.

The increasing interest in high-reliability and low-cost options drive operational challenges with deployment and activation headaches that can only be addressed by comprehensive automation of the network infrastructure in an intelligent and operationally sound model.

The MEF has proposed a Lifecycle Services Orchestration (LSO) architecture that allows for such comprehensive automation when coupled with technologies such as Software Defined Networks (SDN), Network Function Virtualization (NFV) and service orchestration. The approach allows for flexibility in service definition to meet varying qualities of service yet is cost-effective in terms of CapEx and (more pointedly) OpEx.

However, the approach breaks down at scale unless specific considerations are accounted for from the outset. The rise of popularity of the software defined WAN (SD-WAN) is a case in point, where an application drives the adoption of a promising technology whose business case depends on automated deployment and provisioning. Here we explore the technology components that make this possible in the cable operator context.

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