What is MANO

The winds of change are blowing through the Internet in response to the introduction of SDN and NFV. Software Defined Networking (SDN) promises to upgrade the core with an order of magnitude change in throughput and programmability. Network Function Virtualization (NFV) promises to convert many of the functions that exist today as separate boxes, to software running on Virtual Machines.

One of the things that will see an evolution rather than a revolution, is network management. MANO is an acronym that stands for Management and Orchestration. The management part of MANO contains things like Inventory Management, Gold Standard audits (Configuration verification) and Single sign-on security.

The Orchestration part of MANO is about end-to-end provisioning of services. On the surface this seems like a straight forward thing, but hybrid networks that include legacy and SDN/NFV devices may prove to be a challenge for legacy management vendors. There are a number of inter-op organizations springing up to help facilitate the adoption of the new technologies, but many of these have sponsors that may have their own agendas.

Here are some links to a few inter-op sites:

It is always a challenge for developers to get access to real networks when it comes time to test management solutions. Inter-op sites and organizations could accelerate testing, which might speed the adoption of the new technologies. I would suggest to you that the best MANO solutions will see SDN and NFV as simple additions to existing products.

It does seem clear that the market for these new technologies is demanding a level of openness that will foster multi-vendor solutions. Vendors on the other hand continue to do their best to deliver solutions that encourage customers to be exclusive. It will be interesting to see how this all enfolds.

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