MEF Makes SD-WAN Standard Official

August 23, 2019

By Maurice Nagle, Web Editor

Complexity is certainly a characteristic of the cloud era, but don’t get hung up in the weeds as software-defined networking technology is offering the performance, flexibility and versatility demanded in the digital age—sans overwhelming complexity. While SD-WAN carried many question through its infancy, the industry has reached maturity with the publication of its first standard lending clarity to what was an unclear proposition.

This week the MEF (News - Alert) published SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70), as it was recently approved by MEF members and then ratified at the forum’s annual board of directors meeting.

“We want to thank the SD-WAN team for the incredible job they have done in bringing this industry-first standard to market in a timely manner,” said Nan Chen, President, MEF. “Combining standardized SD-WAN services with dynamic high-speed underlay connectivity services – including Carrier Ethernet, Optical Transport, and IP – enables service providers to deliver powerful MEF 3.0 hybrid networking solutions with unprecedented user- and application-directed control over network resources and service capabilities.”

Why is this important? The newly released specs outline rules associated with how traffic is handled; service attributes that describe the externally visible behavior of an SD-WAN service in terms of user experience; and key technical concepts and definitions.

Now, there is a path in place for the creation and deployment of certified MEF 3.0 SD-WAN services. For example, in putting SD-WAN within a standardized LSO architecture supports the orchestration of MEF 3.0 SD-WAN services across automated networks. Standardization makes it easier to communications with intelligent underlay connectivity services – leading to an improved end user experience and the promise of guaranteed service delivery.

MEF 70.1 is right around the corner, which will address underlay connectivity service parameters, SD-WAN service topology and connectivity as well as service attributes for application flow performance and business importance. In addition, the MEF is working toward standards for application security for SD-WAN services; intent-based networking for SD-WAN as well as information and data modeling to drive LSO API development for SD-WAN services.

The SD-WAN market continues to expand at a rapid rate, as the cloud era is demanding more from the network. With standards in place, vendors can better serve customers with what’s required in the modern age, and then some.

Join us in Fort Lauderdale this February to unpack MEF’s new standard and delve into what’s ahead at SD-WAN Expo 2020. The MEF will be there, you should too!

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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