Tuesday, June 9, 2015

ONF Readies Atrium Open SDN Software Release

The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) announced its "Atrium" open SDN software distribution, integrating previously standalone open source components.

Atrium, which will be released by the end of the month, incorporates the Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), the Open Network Operating System (ONOS), and Open Compute Project (OCP) components. The software elements run in either controllers or switches, communicating via the OpenFlow protocol, and include plugin opportunities for other switching solutions to help foster an open ecosystem of interoperable, hardware-based OpenFlow switches.

Atrium 2015/A components include:

  • Documentation for installation, configuration, and operation
  • A snapshot of ONOS verified to work with the white-box software stack as well as other vendor switches that have provided a driver for their pipeline
  • A BGP peering application that runs on ONOS and includes the Quagga BGP stack
  • A collection of OpenFlow v1.3 device drivers in ONOS, meant for talking to vendor equipment with different hardware pipelines
  • Indigo OpenFlow client together with Open Network Linux and OFDPA for the OCP white-box switches
  • Mininet with the use of Open vSwitch (OVS) to emulate the hardware pipelines of the switches involved; (hardware pipelines represent a sequence of match-action tables in an OpenFlow switch)
  • Full testing suite for functionality tests

“ONF is actively creating the ecosystem and the architecture needed to bring open SDN to network operators around the world. Atrium is the first top-to-bottom, soup-to-nuts open source implementation that someone can actually download from GitHub and use to run a real network,” said Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation. “Atrium’s philosophy is to build on software from many developers that has been community developed and tested to help network operators more easily build custom solutions and allow vendors to take advantage of common building blocks, reducing their development costs and improving interoperability. ONF views open source software as critical to accelerating commercial adoption of open SDN.”

“We have adopted an extensible architecture so that adding features and a variety of forwarding planes will follow easily,” said Saurav Das, principal system architect at the Open Networking Foundation. “With community contribution, this platform should evolve even more rapidly.”

“Atrium is entirely focused on ease of open SDN deployment by lowering barriers to adoption,” said Yatish Kumar, Atrium project lead, member of the ONF Technical Council, director of the ONF Specifications Area, and CTO of Corsa Technology. “We continue to view OpenFlow as key to meeting operator needs for a functional multi-vendor southbound protocol. We will build on Atrium’s offerings not only in the controller and switch spaces but also in the application space, making sure that the OpenSourceSDN.org community has a voice in what is included in future releases.”

Industry Support for Atrium
ONF’s open source software initiatives are built on a collaborative effort to ensure our work is complementary to and interoperable with the work being done by other organizations. Organizations supporting ONF’s efforts have said:

"Transitioning the networking industry to shared development around open source code rather than proprietary protocols is a key part of the ONF Mission,” said Urs H√∂lzle, chairman and president of the Open Networking Foundation and senior vice president of Technical Infrastructure and Google Fellow, Google. “Atrium is an important step toward realizing this direction."

“We are pleased to see OCP adopted for the open source hardware and operating software for the forwarding plane in Atrium,” said Corey Bell, CEO of the Open Compute Project. “Together with ONF and partners we are moving the industry to new models of efficiency and innovation in networking and computing for the benefit of all who operate IT infrastructures.”

“It's great to see more momentum building around open solutions for users,” said Neela Jacques, executive director of OpenDaylight. “ONF is a key partner and we share a common vision and purpose to promote SDN. We look forward to seeing the next release of Atrium running on OpenDaylight offering even more opportunities for operators to adopt open SDN.”

“We value working closely with ONF and pleased to bring Atrium to life and provide ONOS and BGP peering application as the key building blocks,” said Guru Parulkar, co-founder and executive director of ON.Lab. “We look forward to continuing our relationship with ONF and enabling real progress of open source software in achieving mainstream adoption.”