Spring 2018 Optical Connections Magazine


Enterprise, CENX, Virtela, QualiSystems, Anuta Networks and Zymr, among others, are all major vendors operating in the SDN orchestration market, says analyst MarketsandMarkets. Indeed, one of these vendors, Ciena, has recently completed a major project in the UK for designing and optimising a very important international network. Jisc runs the UK’s university and higher education research network otherwise known as “Janet”, and it is now the world’s first 400G National Research and Education Network (NREN) using technology from Ciena. With 18m Jisc users, Janet is the busiest NREN in Europe by volume of

condense network footprint in the data centre, this streamlines the number of racks required and ultimately reduces costs too. Also, NFV deployments typically use commodity servers to run software versions of network services that previously were hardware-based. These software-based services - Virtual Network Functions (VNFs) – can include routing, firewalling, load balancing, WAN acceleration and encryption. By software-enabling these network services, providers can oer customers the services dynamically, with the ability to spin them up or down on demand. For a traditional MPLS hardware-based

demand has grown, is now the first to provide 400G. WaveLogic Ai enables us to operate eciently and accurately engineer the network for optimal capacity to manage massive flows from new data-intensive research activities.” Rod Wilson, chief technologist for research networks at Ciena, says: “We are making optical networks more programmable and responsive to changing user demands while using less hardware. WaveLogic Ai focuses on delivering considerable digital advantage, financial savings and eciencies.” NEWJERSEY As well as large-scale customer networks like Janet, fibre network providers are also getting in on the act when it comes to intelligent design. New Jersey-headquartered Hudson Fiber Network (HFN) oers flexible networking solutions to help increase network eciency and lower overall networking expenditures for financial, content, carrier and enterprise clients. HFN connects over 90 locations of the busiest trac hubs in New York and New Jersey, which link to its national WAN spanning the top 16 metro markets in the US. The company’s network also extends to Europe and Asia. Services include Gigabit Ethernet, optical wave solutions and IP connectivity going up to 100G. HFN brought in Israel-headquartered network technology provider Atrinet to create a truly agile, multi-vendor, programmable network infrastructure, to support on-demand service delivery and the rapid on-boarding of new technologies Atrinet deployed its NetACE vendor- agnostic network orchestration, automation and discovery platform to deliver what HFN required. NetACE will enable HFN to get the most out of both its hybrid legacy and SDN and NFV network environments. “During evaluation and analysis Atrinet proved to have an excellent understanding of our specific business challenges and the best designed solution to support our network transformation,” says Keith Muller, COO at HFN. “NetACE will support our growth plans and contribute to helping us fulfil our mission of providing high quality communications services for our customers.” Ohad Kamer, CMO at Atrinet, says: “HFN’s multi-vendor network is now fully programmable across both legacy and next generation domains. HFN has gained complete network visibility, analysis and automation through the discovery of all their network assets and services in real-time.” The market is clearly driving the move towards software-defined network optimisation and network elasticity, as an alternative to just throwing more bandwidth and hardware at problems, which arise from network-hungry customer applications.

The rising need for automation of networks and simplification of network infrastructures has increased the adoption of SDN.

data carried. It has now deployed Ciena’s 6500 packet-optical platform powered by WaveLogic Ai coherent optics to provide high-capacity 400G wavelength connectivity. The deployment makes the Janet network one of the most digitally-advanced NRENs globally in terms of scale, automation and network intelligence. Jeremy Sharp, network infrastructure director at Jisc, says: “Our vision is for the UK to be at the forefront of scientific research. To make that happen, we must have a highly robust network powered with industry-leading technology that can scale to support bandwidth-intensive applications like genome editing and The Square Kilometre Array.” Sharp says: “Janet was the first NREN to provide 100G for users and, as

network, this type of “on demand” service orchestration would not be possible due to the requirement of carrier engineering resources to implement the requests. Sacke says: “The majority of the main carriers already have projects well underway to transition to a software environment. There is already a movement away from the old classic hardware-based networks running MPLS within a dedicated hardware model. Whilst it may be too soon to say that MPLS is dead, the reality is that in order to future proof a network, businesses should be staying clear of the dedicated hardware route.” MAJOR PLAYERS Cisco, Nokia, Ciena, Juniper Networks, Huawei, Netcracker, Hewlett Packard

Orchestral manoeuvres: Ciena is one of several major vendors now active in the SDN orchestration market.



ISSUE 12 | Q1 2018

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