Virtual Central Office

At KubeCon + CloudNativeCon North America 2019 in San Diego, a team made up of over 80 Volunteers from 12 organizations and 6 open source communities and standards groups unveiled an E2E 5G Cloud Native Network live demo from the VCO 3.0 working group. The keynote was shown live to an audience of 7-8K attendees, streamed live on the web, and is available for on-demand viewing (with 3.4K views to date and counting).

The latest version of the demo, Virtual Central Office 3.0, builds on the work of the VCO 1.0 and 2.0 initiatives that began in the OPNFV community and had been shown as live demos at previous events. This latest version of the demo has taken a cloud native approach to building a 5G network protype on open source infrastructure including Kubernetes. The demo was hosted in labs in Sophia Antipolis and Montreal, a private cloud, and the public cloud — all connected to each as well as to an onsite rack with servers and switches along with a Faraday Cage housing a 5G radio and handset.

Heather Kirksey from the Linux Foundation introduced the project and then invited Fu Qiao from China Mobile to the start to talk about the challenges they face in rolling out 5G across their networks and how they are leveraging open source software and cloud native approaches. Azhar Sayeed from Red Hat then explained the network components, the software stack, and how the demo was built.  Multiple telemetry and analytics dashboards were running to display the pods, nodes, containers, clusters, workloads, traffic utilization, and correlation through the system. The OPNFV Barometer project played a key role here.

The moment of truth was a 5G phone call initiated from the stage to a packet core in Montreal, an IMS core in the Public cloud, and an LTE lab in France. The call was connected… much to the relief of the demo team! The demo closed with a review of gaps and lessons learned, planning future integration with other LFN projects, and ways to get involved. We’d like to offer a huge “thank you” to all the folks on the demo team.

We encourage the industry to learn more with the assets below and get involved in helping to shape the future of 5G Cloud Native networks by joining the project mailing list. In 2020, demo participants will continue to build 5G network solutions and the VCO demo team has begun initial discussions for the taking the next version into new areas, including integrating workflows with the ONAP project and CNTT initiative. Join us!


Virtual Central Office (VCO) / 5G Cloud Native Network Assets: