Next step in NFV feature development published

When ETSI ISG NFV met in Sophia Antipolis recently for their 41st plenary meeting, it was not only collocating the 10 year anniversary celebration (see separate blog post here) with a week full of technical discussions. It was also a major step to provide the next package of specifications in NFV’s Release 4. The new package contains edition 4.4.1 documents for both stage 2 and stage 3.

In stage 2, 14 documents were updated mainly with maintenance. In addition, 2 new group specifications were published:

ETSI GS NFV-IFA 048, which adopts the State-Task design pattern to specify the NFV-MANO policy information model. The information elements in the model are transferred through policy management interfaces over NFV-MANO reference points, which enable the enforcement of policies in the framework of NFV-MANO. Stack-Task design pattern supports representing different policy expression forms and provides more flexibility and extensibility in respects to policy.

ETSI GS NFV-IFA 047, which specifies the service requirements as well as service interfaces produced by the MDAF (Management Data Analytics Function). Following the recommendations from a previous Release 4 group report ETSI GR NFV-IFA 041 on enabling autonomous management in NFV-MANO, this specification specifies a new function named MDAF (equipped with AI/ML models) and its service interfaces, which improve decision making of NFV-MANO in automation processes especially for network service management and orchestration.  

In stage 3, there were 10 updated documents. The major highlights are described below:

ETSI GS NFV-SOL 018 - Profiling specification of protocol and data model solutions for OS Container management and orchestration:

The biggest part of the updates was about Cloud-Native VNFs and Container Infrastructure management. After the big leap forward in the support of containerized workloads in the NFV framework, which the previous edition 4.3.1 represented, the recently published 4.4.1 edition has brought additional support and consolidation of the feature.

Two new management services interfaces, CIS MCCO (Managed CIS Cluster Object) and CIS instance, as specified in ETSI GS NFV-IFA 036 “Specification of requirements for the management and orchestration of container cluster nodes”, are added to the scope.

Consequently, the latest published version of the reference Kubernetes® API are profiled as NFV protocol and data model solution for the new management services. Three kinds of Kubernetes® resource objects (daemonSets, CRDs and PersistentVolumes) are mapped to the NFV objects of the CIS MCCO management service interface. One kind of Kubernetes® resource object (Node) is mapped to the NFV objects of the CIS instance management service.  All mentioned resource objects are deployed as part of the cluster management.

For the above resource objects, their resource methods are profiled to match the corresponding NFV service interface requirements and flow sequence diagrams for the CIS MCCO and CIS instance operations are provided.

For the Support for the expression of virtual NIC interface requirements, the ‘cni’ capability specified and registered in the ETSI NFV NFVI Platform Capability Registry allows the expression in a VNFD of requirements related to secondary container cluster network and, based on them, allows MANO functions to select an appropriate CNI.

ETSI GS NFV-SOL 009 - RESTful protocols specification for the management of NFV-MANO:

The CIR function, container image registry, is added as a managed entity

Other enhancements:

In relation to the connectivity to primary cluster networks, support of address pools for load balancers and modelling of ingress is part of this edition.

OAuth2.0 scope values have been specified for the VNF LCM, the NS LCM and the VNF Package interfaces. They allow to restrict the authorization of the consumer to read or manipulate certain resources within an interface. In the next editions further scope values will be defined for other interfaces.

The VNF package specification was enhanced to align with the stage 2 provisions for licensing.

As an enhancement of “Flexibility with scalable VNF/NS instantiation”, new provisions were created that allow e.g. the consumer of the NS LCM interface to indicate the target scale level of a constituent VNF, or to specify in an NSD the target scale level of a nested NS.

RESTful protocols specification for the Policy Management Interface has added new provisions to align with the policy information model specified in the recently published ETSI GS NFV-IFA048.

After this big package it is planned to complete the Release 4 feature development in the next edition 4.5.1, which is planned for this summer.

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