5 differences between SDN & Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) - Tech | 5G, SDN/NFV & Edge Compute


Monday, June 10, 2013

5 differences between SDN & Network Functions Virtualization (NFV)

Is Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) a substitute for Software Defined Networks (SDN)? Are both SDN & NFV competing technologies?
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Also read: SDN Basics / 101

As you can see from the table below, NFV and SDN are both complementary technologies and can be deployed simultaneously in a network.

Network Functions Virtualization
Software Defined Networks
Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) helps service providers to virtualize functions such as routing,  load balancing, deep packet inspection and policy management. Such services are run on top of standard off-the-shelf servers. NFV helps service providers to consolidate network functions and  eliminates the need for special purpose hardware. 
Software Defined Networking (SDN) is a network architecture where the control plane is decoupled from the hardware and implemented as a software application.  The control plane runs on any standard server in a centralized location. This architecture provides more programmability and control to the network administrators.
NFV is targeted at service providers
SDN architecture is predominantly used in data centers
Standards are still evolving. Driven by ETSI NFV Working group
Open Networking Foundation is driving the standards.
No new protocols, yet
OpenFlow, ForCES, PCE, XML
Early applications are virtualizing routers, firewalls, load balancers etc.,
Early applications are VM migration, cloud network services provisioning etc.,

Also read:
SDN Architecture - Protocols & Components

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