Wednesday, June 19, 2013

ONF PlugFest Tests OpenFlow 1.3

The Open Networking Foundation (ONF)completed its third semi-annual PlugFest designed to drive interoperability, deployment, and commercialization of SDN and the OpenFlow protocol.

The event, which was hosted earlier this month at the Indiana Center for Network Translational Research and Education (InCNTRE), was attended by nearly 50 network engineers from 20 member companies with the common goal of ensuring that new SDN protocols work across all of their products.

Testing focused on OpenFlow versions 1.0, 1.2, and 1.3 in commercial and test controllers and hardware and virtual switches. The event also allowed member companies to work in a neutral environment to test implementations of OpenFlow-based SDN that would be commercially applied to service provider, data center, and enterprise markets.

The ONF said the addition of OpenFlow 1.3 allowed for innovative test cases that spanned into performing match actions and functions in IPv6 and MPLS.

"This PlugFest showed that ONF has successfully encouraged implementation of OpenFlow 1.3 within its membership," said Michael Haugh, senior manager market development at Ixia and chair of the ONF Testing & Interoperability Working Group. “Event participants were able to accomplish an equivalent of two months of quality assurance (QA) testing in a about week, complete unique testing that could take multiple months in a QA lab.  The breadth of participation also allowed them to resolve features and interoperability issues with different vendors.”

“ONF PlugFests are critical to fostering deployments and enhancing implementations of OpenFlow-based SDN,” said Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation. “Through interoperability testing, ONF helps product developers get their implementations working properly and assures their customers of a supply of interoperable products. I was particularly happy to see the broad turnout for OpenFlow 1.3.”

“Hosting the ONF PlugFest is one example of how InCNTRE supports the SDN industry,” said Steve Wallace, InCNTRE executive director. “By providing 50 network engineers from nearly 20 companies with access to four simultaneously operating testbeds in our state-of-the-art lab, we help them make sure that the new SDN protocols work across all their products – to essentially translate the theoretical aspects of SDN to real-world, industry situations.”

INCNTRE is the first ONF certified lab for conformance testing. The next ONF PlugFest will be held at the InCNTRE lab November 2013.