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08 Jun

AT&T® Fully Utilizing OpenStack And CORD Platforms For Its Network Virtualization Efforts

Internet Providers

Network Virtualization Efforts

AT&T®, one of the major internet providers in the US, is offering complete support for using the OpenStack platform. The carrier is however presently committed to fully deploying its OpenStack-based AT&T® Integrated Cloud Zones (AIC) that it failed to achieve last year.

The AIC zones are actual physical locations utilized by the carrier for operating its virtual network functions (VNF). Previously, AT&T® has proposed plans for setting up more than hundred AIC zones, which remained incomplete with only 80 of the zones deployed.

Andre Fuetsch, president of AT&T® Labs has described it as “bringing the network to the cloud.” He said, “OpenStack is still a critical component to our architecture. We’ve made a significant investment in development resources contributing to the community, either directly through us or through proxy of developers that we hire.”

Currently, AT&T® has made proposals for deploying more than a hundred AIC zones across the country by the end of the year. Created in 2010, the OpenStack project is an open source group dedicated to compiling software for usage in cloud computing systems. The project has implemented a centralized management of computing, data, storage, and networking through a dashboard.

It was initially formed a joint venture of Rackspace and NASA, and the OpenStack Foundation undertook the entire project in the previous year. Currently, more than 500 companies have collaborated with the project. The OpenStack has played a major role in the migration efforts of telecom markets into virtualized platforms.

Fuetsch said, “Certainly some have been concerned about OpenStack in terms of its scaling and complexity, but we’re far enough down the road with OpenStack that we are fully committed. We absolutely look at a very long horizon in terms of where things are going and are always evaluating alternatives and options, but for now we are all in.”

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AT&T® Integrated Cloud Zones (AIC)

In addition, AT&T® is also involved in numerous efforts behind the Central Office Re-architected as a Data Center (CORD) program. It is intended mainly for the growing data centers and internet providers in establishing software control for supporting services such as 5G networks.

As per Fuetsch, “What we like about this is for mobile operators with large infrastructure in place is that it puts them into a position to — with the move to 5G — support a more cloud-like architecture with the radio and mobile packet infrastructure.”

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