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SDN Journal Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, TJ Randall

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DMTF Launches Network Management Initiative to Address Today’s Complex Data Center and Network Environments

DMTF, the organization bringing the IT industry together to collaborate on the development, validation and promotion of infrastructure management standards, today announced its Network Management Initiative (NETMAN), which will lead the industry toward the unification of network management across traditional, cloud and software defined data center (SDDC) environments.

While cloud, virtualization and software defined networking have eased the use of network functions for consumers, the challenges of deploying and managing the network supporting these infrastructures have magnified. Addressing the current complexity and abstraction, DMTF’s NETMAN will provide the necessary standards-based management models and interfaces to enable consistent, unified and automated provisioning, deployment, configuration, and monitoring of network environments. The DMTF also believes that NETMAN could significantly benefit other related efforts such as the Network Function Virtualization (NFV) initiative (www.etsi.org/nfv).

Today’s existing and emerging network management standards do not attempt to integrate with server, virtualization and cloud management standards to simplify and unify the management of the overall infrastructure. Building upon the DMTF’s widely-deployed management standards, NETMAN is in the unique position to:

  • Facilitate interoperable management across multiple network environments
  • Enable a common management infrastructure for network resources and services that can span across multiple implementations, including open source solutions
  • Deliver effective management of the network environment within new paradigms such as SDDC and NFV

“Multiple open source, proprietary and isolated management solutions for networks currently exist, but the lack of cohesion often increases the complexity and cost of development, rather than ease these burdens,” said DMTF Chair of the Board Winston Bumpus. “The DMTF’s NETMAN takes a holistic approach, using standard management interfaces, to facilitate interoperability. The result is integrated management in today’s real-world, heterogeneous network environments.”

Industry Support for the DMTF Network Management Initiative

“As a leader in connectivity solutions, Broadcom is proud to support the DMTF's Network Management Initiative, which provides standards-based management models and interfaces for networking environments,” said Ed Redmond, Vice President and GM for Broadcom's Compute and Connectivity Group. “Network environments continue to scale in multiple directions; size, speeds, feature richness and heterogeneity. It has never been more important to have a consistent, cohesive and ‘open’ management infrastructure for all network resources and services.”

“As the medium that is rapidly connecting all people and all things, the network's critical role in modern systems is paramount,” said Yoshiki Matsuda, Vice President, IT Platform R & D Management Division, Hitachi, Ltd. “Hitachi is encouraged to see that the DMTF is expanding its scope to encompass the sphere of network management. DMTF management standards are the ties that bind devices to management platforms. Extending those platforms to encompass the network is the next logical and necessary step.”

“Microsoft is fully engaged in open-standard Software Defined Networking initiatives, and we actively support DMTF’s standards-based Network Management Initiative. We believe it will enable the industry to transform today’s complex, fragile network services into simple, robust plug-and-play ones,” said Jeffrey Snover, Lead Architect for Windows Server and System Center. “Microsoft’s Datacenter Abstraction Layer initiative embraces and implements DMTF standards to help enable a plug-and-play experience for datacenter devices.”

“Management of the network has become more complex. With the introduction of virtualization and cloud, a common instrumentation of networks is critical to build complex solutions out of heterogeneous hardware and software. NETMAN along with current industry management standards (CDM, DASH, SMASH, SMI, VMAN), provides the only consistent standards in the industry,” said Jim Davis, CTO, WS, Inc. “WS products and professional services implement DMTF standards allowing interoperability and lowering TCO.”

“Network virtualization and management is currently the most challenging part of the software defined data center. ZTE believes open standards are critical to an open ecosystem for network management providing benefits such as lowered TCO and faster response to different customers' requirements with controllable SLAs and tenant specific policy,” said Hong Cai, CTO of Cloud Computing, ZTE. “DMTF's NETMAN will play an important role in data centers of telecommunication operators, Internet companies and enterprises.”

Detailed information on all of DMTF standards can be found at www.dmtf.org/standards. Those interested in supporting and joining DMTF’s efforts to identify and create standards can learn more at www.dmtf.org/join.

About DMTF

DMTF standards enable effective management of IT environments. The organization is comprised of industry-leading member companies that collaborate on the development, validation and promotion of infrastructure management standards. These standards specify well-defined interfaces that collectively deliver complete management capabilities. DMTF standard interfaces are critical to enabling interoperability among multi-vendor IT infrastructures, and systems and network management including cloud, virtualization, desktop, network, servers and storage. DMTF spans the globe with member companies and organizations representing varied industry sectors. The DMTF board of directors is led by 17 industry-leading technology companies including: Broadcom Corporation; CA Technologies; Cisco; Citrix Systems, Inc.; Dell; Emerson Network Power; Fujitsu; Hitachi, Ltd.; HP; Intel Corporation; Microsoft Corporation; NetApp; Oracle; Software AG; SunGard Availability Services; Telecom Italia and VMware, Inc. Information about the organization, its technologies and activities can be found at www.dmtf.org.

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