< back to overview

Open Networking Foundation Announces Annual Technical Focus

Foundation Enters Third Year with New Technical Roadmap; Names Rick Bauer Technical Program Manager

OPEN NETWORKING SUMMIT, Santa Clara, Calif., April 16, 2013 – The Open Networking Foundation (ONF), a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting Software-Defined Networking (SDN), today announced ONF’s annual technical roadmap designed to drive the commercialization of open, standards-based SDN. ONF continues to solve market needs in practical ways, developing new standards, and introducing working groups with the needs of end users in mind. ONF’s technical roadmap will be overseen by Rick Bauer, newly appointed by ONF to the position of technical program manager.

“Rapid SDN adoption requires practical solutions,” said Dan Pitt, executive director of ONF. “We’re committed to serving as a networking consumer advocate, representing the needs of global SDN users by providing standardized approaches that promote competition and best-of-breed solutions. This allows users to achieve maximum organizational impact by innovating and governing the operation of their networks according to their own business objectives, through software that they control.”

Organizations understand the value of software programmability in the network, and know that truly standards-based systems best meet the needs of operators and users. ONF does not support vendor-specific protocols and does not believe that all standards – especially software APIs – should be set by a committee. ONF will standardize only what is necessary to move the networking industry forward. To that end, emphasis in the coming year will be placed on building the OpenFlow® substrate to meet market needs, including standard approaches to configuration, management, security, and transport. In addition to providing the foundation on which SDN value is built, the OpenFlow® substrate supports the virtualization of many network functions. Thus ONF will continue to work closely with the ETSI network-operator-led Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) Industry Specification Group (ISG).

In addition, ONF will undertake the following:

  • Evolution of the OpenFlow® protocol to version 1.4
  • Prototyping of new features before they are built into standards documentation to ensure that they meet end-user needs
  • Certifying products built on OpenFlow® 1.0 through OpenFlow® 1.3 through a formal certification program; sanctioning independent labs for testing
  • Embarking on Operations, Administration and Maintenance (OAM)
  • Fostering a supply chain for physical OpenFlow® switches by developing table typing patterns in the Forwarding Abstractions Working Group and convening a chipmaker advisory board that will encourage OpenFlow® support in Ethernet chips
  • Introducing the Migration Working Group to make recommendations on guidelines, systems, tools, and metrics for migrating to an OpenFlow® network.
  • Introducing the Optical Transport Working Group, a group driven by telecommunications providers and focused on optical WANs and the interconnection between services that network operators offer and cloud companies provide with an emphasis on quality of service (QoS).
  • Further strengthening its technical leadership, ONF also recently announced the addition of nine new thought leaders to the Research Associates roster, bring the total to twelve. Research Associates are selected for participation privileges in ONF based on their contributions to the creation and advancement of SDN and the OpenFlow® protocol. Their knowledge and insight are instrumental in keeping ONF and its member companies at the forefront of the SDN movement.

Rick Bauer, the new technical program manager for ONF, will be charged with overseeing ONF’s annual technical focus. Bauer brings a career in IT management to his role atONF’s, having served as a technology officer and CIO for a variety of enterprise and non-profit organizations. He has also had broad involvement in industry standards groups, having served as the founding chairman of the Cybersecurity Credentials Collaborative; the director of technology for the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA); and research and development director for the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA).

“Organizations need to achieve better business value from today’s networks. At the same time, they need to design and build networks of the future that can meet the demands of highly dynamic and virtualized applications, as well as the demands of new business models and virtual organizations,” noted Bauer. “I look forward to taking on the technical program at ONF, helping to further develop the OpenFlow® protocol and ONF’s entire technical portfolio, and put practical standards-based SDN solutions into the hands of users.”

About ONF
Launched in 2011 by Deutsche Telekom, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Verizon, and Yahoo!, the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) is a growing nonprofit organization with more than 90 members whose mission is to advance the commercialization and use of SDN and the OpenFlow® protocol. ONF will accelerate the delivery and use of SDN and OpenFlow® technologies and standards while fostering a vibrant market of products, services, applications, customers, and users. For further details visit the ONF website at: http://www.opennetworking.org.