What’s the deal with NFV, NV and SDN for Data Centers?

When IT professionals gathered for a recent OpenStack conference in Austin, Texas, it was apparent that there was some buzz about network functions virtualization (NFV). As Data Center Knowledge described it in a recent article, NFV “stole the show,” with attendance at related sessions drawing twice as many crowds.

What’s the deal with NFV, NV and SDN for data centers?The draw appeared to be whether the new methodology for workload orchestration could influence data center architecture. It could be the solution to the challenges faced by many network teams — being challenged with configuration demands that could take weeks to meet. With newer approaches, like NFV, network virtualization (NV), and Software Defined Network (SDN), they are able to turn around network mobility solutions more effectively and quickly.

According to AFCOM State of the Data Center’s report, 83 percent of companies surveyed said they planned to implement or had already deployed SDN or some type of NFV by the end of 2016.

Here are some key things to know about NFV, NV and SDN:

Network Virtualization

Network virtualization or NV creates segments in an existing network, like a tunnel. Instead of physically connecting two domains within a network, NV is able to form a tunnel through the network to connect them. It eliminates the need to wire every new domain connection separately. It allows IT professionals to virtualize their infrastructure, enabling them to make changes on top of the existing infrastructure.

Network Functions Virtualization

NFV delivers an alternative path to designing, deploying and managing networking services. NFV separates network functions, like firewalling and intrusion detection, from proprietary hardware appliances — enabling them to run in software. It consolidates the networking components needed for a fully virtualized infrastructure and uses standard IT virtualization technologies.

Software Defined Networking

SDN provides users the ability to manage network services using software that makes the networks centrally programmable, therefore paving the way for quicker configuration. It makes the network programmable by separating the system that determines where traffic is sent from the underlying system that sends data to certain destinations.

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Rich Banta

Rich Banta

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Rich is responsible for Compliance and Certifications, Data Center Operations, Information Technology, and Client Concierge Services. Rich has an extensive background in server and network management, large scale wide-area networks, storage, business continuity, and monitoring. Rich is a former CTO of a major health care system. Rich is hands-on every day in the data centers. He also holds many certifications, including: CISA – Certified Information Systems Auditor CRISC – Certified in Risk & Information Systems Management CDCE – Certified Data Center Expert CDCDP – Certified Data Center Design Professional