The speed and ease at which service providers can deploy new, standardized and automated cloud-based access infrastructures improved significantly today as Broadband Forum completed and published the second code release of its Open Broadband – Broadband Access Abstraction (OB-BAA) project.
Release 2.0 of OB-BAA builds on the functionalities enabled by Releases 1.0 and 1.1, which were demonstrated to wide-acclaim at Broadband World Forum last October. Taking accelerated migration to cloud-based access networks to the next level, this Open Broadband reference implementation expands the breadth of vendors and network configurations capable of leveraging its ability to facilitate co-existence, seamless migration and adaptation to an increasingly wide variety of software defined access technologies and implementations.
The latest OB-BAA Release 2.0 – which is now ready for download – also expands the types of proprietary access nodes that can be managed and controlled via the BAA layer. This includes enabling additional adaptation of access nodes to meet individual network needs and providing examples of common functions that service providers are likely to perform when automating and managing their networks. These functionalities facilitate migration to cloud-based deployments for an increased number of service providers.
“OB-BAA is a key solution for an operator’s traditional access network to evolve towards an SDN/NFV-based network in the future,” said Jialiang Jin, of China Telecom, member of the OB-BAA project team. “With its help, operators can build a more intelligent access network. Release 2.0 brings more detailed functionality for essential network operations and covers more types of access nodes, both of which greatly enhance the OB-BAA software. We look forward to future releases of OB-BAA where more and more functionality can be added to enable open and flexible solutions needed by the SDN/NFV-based network.”
The support of device-specific adapters in Release 2.0 of OB-BAA not only allows adaptation to certain specifics of a vendor’s access network model, but can also support access nodes that use protocols other than NETCONF/YANG.
Service providers are also given the ability to manage the library of YANG modules suitable for various access node types, such as an Optical Line Terminal (OLT), Optical Network Terminal (ONT) or Distribution Point Unit (DPU). The project includes examples of the YANG modules for an OLT or DPU based on the work of Broadband Forum’s TR-413 ‘SDN Management and Control Interfaces for CloudCO Network Functions’. This recently published Technical Report (TR) is another key specification which addresses the introduction of SDN technologies by specifying the standard YANG interfaces for Access Nodes for the Northbound Interface (NBI) of the adapters and the NBI of the BAA layer itself. This fosters the growth of a wide and interoperable ecosystem of solutions with great benefit for operators’ adoption and maintenance.
Additionally, the portfolio of NETCONF commands included in the distribution has expanded. These commands apply to access nodes (OLTs, DPUs, ONTs) for the configuration of network interfaces, traffic forwarding rules, and traffic descriptors and associated filters.
“While Release 1 of OB-BAA enabled service provider migration to cloud-based deployments, what Release 2 aims to do is ease and accelerate that process even further,” said Timothy Carey, of Nokia, Project Lead of the OB-BAA Open Source Project. “One of the key advantages of the BAA layer is that it provides a standardized vendor-agnostic northbound interface for SDN management and control entities. In addition, service providers might require modifications to standardized models for various types of access nodes to meet their network needs. To achieve this, OB-BAA Release 2.0 allows the deployment of standard adapters that come with the platform and device‑specific adapters that are unique to each vendor’s implementation of the access node.”
The OB-BAA distribution can be downloaded as a docker directly from Broadband Forum’s public docker repository.
To find out more about Broadband Forum’s Open Broadband initiative, watch this video interview with Mauro Tilocca, Access Network Automation Project Manager at TIM and Broadband Forum Board Member.