Virtualisation and software networks are a major disruptive technology for communications networks, enabling services to be deployed as software functions running directly in the network on commodity hardware. However, deploying the more complex user-facing applications and services envisioned for 5G networks presents significant technological challenges for development and deployment. SONATA addresses both issues.
For service development, SONATA provides service patterns and description techniques for composed services. A customised SDK is developed to boost the efficiency of developers of network functions and composed services, by integrating catalogue access, editing, debugging, and monitoring analysis tools with service packaging for shipment to an operator.
For deployment, SONATA provides a novel service platform to manage service execution. The platform complements the SDK with functionality to validate service packages. Moreover, it improves on existing platforms by providing a flexible and extensible orchestration framework based on a plugin architecture. Thanks to SONATA’s platform service developers can provide custom algorithms to steer the orchestration of their services: for continuous placement, scaling, life-cycle management and contextualization of services. These algorithms are overseen by executives in the service platform, ensuring trust and resolving any conflict between services.
The University of Paderborn ‒ Research Group Computer Networks ‒ is mainly involved in the following work packages:
WP2: Use case definition, requirements, architecture, market watch
This workpackage identifies and defines relevant use cases and derives requirements from these use cases used to develop and specify the overall system architecture of the SDK and service platform. Our group is mainly responsible for leading and contributing to the architecture task in this workpackage, focusing on the SDK toolchain as well as the orchestration kernel and its information flow.
WP3: Service programmability and toolset
In the service programming context, our group concentrates on description techniques for complex services with specific properties, for example, scaling behavior of service chains and state management of elastic services.
WP4: Resource orchestration and operations repositories
WP4 focuses on automatic resource orchestration as part of the developed service platform. Besides architectural inputs, our group focuses on supporting custom tailored resource management algorithms which can be defined by service developers. Additionally, we contribute to conflict resolution approaches needed when several competing services are executed on the same set of resources.
WP6: Infrastructure setup, validation, and pilots
We also work on the pilot definition test and validation of the prototype.