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Heather Kirksey

OPNFV Iruya: Paving the Way for 5G via Testing Tools, Scripts, and Automation

By Blog

Today, the OPNFV community is pleased to announce the availability of OPNFV Iruya, the platform’s 9th release. After more than 5 years, the community continues to rally together, build upon previous releases, with earned knowledge and wisdom, refined skills, and eye for what’s to come. We had a great LFN Developer & Testing Forum in Prague in collaboration with our fellow communities  last month with record participation by service provider companies as we worked to finish up Iruya and plan the road ahead.

We enter 2020, and introduce OPNFV Iruya, in tandem with an evolving Cloud iNfrastructure Telco Taskforce (CNTT) and OPNFV Verified Program (OVP) that take the foundations laid with OPNFV to the next level. Iruya not only provides support for CNTT and OVP work, but introduces reference implementation and test automation ahead of 5G and (eventually) edge deployments as well as continues the testing and integration work and upstream contributions that OPNFV is well known for. As we look to the year ahead, we look forward to collaborating with CNTT and GSMA to achieve even greater alignment with these groups.

Iruya Highlights 

NFVI testing, a historic strength for OPNFV and OVP, is enhanced with Iruya; it  contains tools, scripts and automation as an enabler for CNTT, OVP, Reference Implementation (RI), Reference Compliance (RC), and cross-project testing. Test case projects saw more capabilities and test cases and primarily focus on the NFVI layer utilizing upstream projects (e.g., OpenDaylight, Kubernetes, OVS, OpenStack, OVN,, etc). Meanwhile the CI and testing projects also form the building blocks of  collaboration between OPNFV and CNTT, where OPNFV will assist with the CNTT RI & RC badging through OVP. 

Moreover, OVP itself  continues to make progress with now over 12 verified NFVI products, four OPNFV Verified 3rd-Party testing labs, and the first cohort of VNF vendors to be announced soon. We also expect OVP will eventually badge CNTT compliant implementations.

OPNFV testing projects including Functest, Yardstick, VSPerf, Bottlenecks, and NFVBench saw an increase in capabilities and test cases. Functest in particular published new CNTT specific containers, increased test coverage, now includes a CNTT compliance cookbook, published new Ansible playbooks to deploy the OPNFV CI/CD toolchain with greater ease. Functest contains several test cases that run a VNF to provide a more realistic load on NFVI. During Iruya, these VNF test cases were hardened and reduced in footprint.

This year we will continue to see more integration between networking and the edge and it’s notable that Iruya contains a number of important edge computing features through projects such as Rocket (hardware acceleration for vEPC), Edge Cloud (edge OpenStack test cases), and Container4NFV (secure containers with multiple IP addresses).  

 Several feature projects such as Barometer, Doctor, and LaaS made progress as well.

We’re also proud to announce that Iruya marks the successful migration of OPNFV to EasyCLA as part of the Linux Foundation’s Community Bridge initiative (announced by LFN at ONS NA last year). EasyCLA automates the process of managing contributor agreement and access to code repositories and enables participating organizations to have direct control over which employees are authorized to be contributors. 

Looking Ahead

As I look back over 5 years of collaboration and 9 releases, I am proud of what the OPNFV community has achieved, and I’m even more excited about what lies ahead. Collaboration with CNTT and deepening engagement with service providers, taking on cloud native reference architectures and implementations, and the continued evolution and growth of OVP are all important activities for us in the upcoming months, and I remain excited about the strength and collaborative spirit of our community.

The OPNFV communityalong with those involved in CNTT, OVP, and upstream organizationswill convene in Los Angeles for the Open Networking & Edge Summit (ONES), April 20-21, followed by two days of LFN Technical Meetings. More details on the event, and planned collaboration activities, are available here: 

We invite you to learn more about Iruya here and download it here. Stay tuned for our LFN Developer & Testing Forum event report and be sure to join us in Los Angeles in April! 

OPNFV Turns 5

By Blog

Happy Fifth Birthday to the project, the community, and to the industry’s open source NFV journey! The past five years have been a time of growth, challenges, learned wisdom, friends made, debates engaged, code written, and tests run. Along the way, our entire ecosystem has increased their knowledge of CI/CD, automation, OpenStack, k8s, and open source compliance and verification, just to name a little of what we’ve accomplished.  We’ve learned about our sister open source projects, built relationships with standards organizations, and come together as a community. It has been the most extraordinary experience of my entire career to be a part of this group of people.

And now with the advent of CNTT and the evolution of the OPNFV Verified Program, we see a path to bring even more value to our members and take our work even further. The energy and passion of our most recent CNTT/OPNFV/GSMA meeting was truly palpable. I am so honored to be doing this work with you, and your enthusiasm is what brings me to work every day. Thank you so much to everyone who’s been involved with OPNFV at any point and much gratitude to all the new folks in the project. I look forward to building the network of the future with you.


A 2017 Reflection: Transforming Networks Through Open Source NFV

By Blog

Read the full 2017 OPNFV Year in Review report here.

It is with gratitude and pleasure that I look back on our accomplishments of 2017 and with excitement for the future as I look ahead to our path as part of LF Networking in 2018. We have come such a long way together since our founding over three years ago and this moment of transition marks a great opportunity to reflect on our impact.

Starting with the unique mission to do systems integration as an open source project, we have become the engine room for integration, testing, and automation, and new NFV feature validation across the open source development ecosystem. What I am most proud of is the strong and collaborative relationships we have built with our key upstream partners, from OpenStack to OpenDaylight to Kubernetes, to data plane and acceleration groups like and DPDK, to hardware partners like Open Compute Project. 2017 also saw us incorporating MANO and analytics capabilities with ONAP, Open Baton, PNDA, and Calipso.

This work would not be possible without our extraordinary community and its welcoming global culture. This year saw two productive plugfests, hosted by Orange and Intel, the continuing growth of the XCI initiative, our Danube and Euphrates releases, and an extraordinary OPNFV Summit hosted in Beijing. We presented at Open Source Leadership Summit, ONS, China SDN/NFV, OpenStack, Light Reading’s Big Communications Event, and CableLabs Summer conference. We built our first ever community demo showing an integrated stack for the Virtual Central Office, and are about to launch our long-awaited OPNFV Verified Program.

Most importantly, we made friends, we shared beers, we debated, we worked to make our community more inclusive, we solved technical problems, and we reached out to forge ties across multiple communities. As we look forward to being part of LF Networking this year, I know that we will bring this spirit of working together to help all our networking projects bring value and change the world in 2018. Let’s go collaborate!

In the interim, I encourage you to download the full OPNFV 2017 Year in Review report for a more holistic look at what we’ve accomplished this past year.


Open Source Software and the Network of Tomorrow

By Blog

This post originally appeared on the DARPA Hackfest blog

When I look at innovative developments in software defined radio (SDR), I can’t help but view those in a larger context of how networking overall is being redefined in software. For years, networking was one corner of technology that seemed to defy the oft-repeated adage that software is eating the world. With its patchwork of arcane and proprietary network elements, complex standardization processes, and hardware-centric operations, networking simply seemed resistant to the changes affecting computation and storage.

What a difference a few years make! In short timeframe, we have seen the advent not only of SDR but also of Software Defined Networking (SDN), which decouples the control plane and data plane, and NFV (Network Functions Virtualization), which treats the capabilities that for years were built into monolithic hardware appliances as dynamic cloud applications. The hope is that this will allow operators to innovate much more quickly, and, in response to demand and subscriber usage, scale out and in. With 5G and the Internet of Things (IOT) on the horizon, most operators feel that cloud, SDN, NFV, and SDR frameworks will all be necessary to rolling out these services.

What I find even more extraordinary than the pace of innovation and change is how the breakneck pace is being driven: through open source resources. The operators have embraced open source software with gusto: no less venerable a company than AT&T has claimed that its network will be built on 80% open source components within 10 years. I’ve watched a very closed and competitive industry develop the sense of common community, a hallmark of the open source ethic. I’ve watched cutthroat competitors go out of their way to collaborate, both across company and geographic lines, and it’s been a great counterpoint to much of the larger political narratives around us.

I have seen great innovation begin to emerge from this collaboration: a start to bringing AI and machine learning to network ops and to building self-healing and self-scaling networks that automatically tune themselves to the user experience. On the other hand, the vast array of data and subscriber information means that security and privacy concerns become even more critical, and it’s unclear that traditional telecom expertise either within companies or with policy makers has prepared anyone for this impact. And as cool as these technologies are, the ongoing litany of abuses on social media platforms has taught us that depending on algorithms to run a platform on which millions of people rely has consequences.

What gives me hope is that doing this work in the open in fully transparent communities means that anyone can see the actual software being used and can comment on and change it. The network is being reimagined. Will that be for the eventual good of the consumer or not?

Heather Kirksey will be speaking at the DARPA Hackfest on Tuesday, November 14 at 18:45, at the NASA Ames Conference Center in Mountain View, Califronia.