5g Deployment through Multi-cloud and Service-Mesh

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To accommodate diverse use-cases, there is a need for telecom operators to design 5G network architecture with efficiency and flexibility. Building a virtualized edge-cloud infrastructure concept using service-mesh and SDN enables flexibility and scalability. SDN technologies help build a dynamic network with central control. A service-mesh can decouple network connectivity from an individual application. In this article, we discuss ATSgen’s solution for 5G deployment through Multi-cloud and Service-Mesh and how it is beneficial for Telecom players today.

What we Offer

Our reference architecture for addressing the 5G deployment uses the network-as-a-service and network service-mesh in the multi-cloud rollout of SDN, providing the following benefits:

  • Unified SDN controller managing multiple Kubernetes clusters
  • Light SDN deployment on the edge
  • Ability to extend the same IP subnet in the network-as-a-service to the edge, removing the need for manual management of IP addresses used in various Edge deployments.
  • Allows extending local cluster Kubernetes services across clusters.
  • Additionally, it provides an option for traffic steering through CNFs as and when needed.

How we offer Network-as-a-Service/Service-Mesh

Application or deployment can be associated with a network of interest with the help of SDN service definitions, allowing connectivity to the required network domain.

Figure 1: Network-as-a-Service

In certain cases, traffic may be required to steer through a chain of CNFs. For example, one may want to push traffic via a firewall or/and a gateway network function at the edge to access a service available in the cloud.

Figure 2: Service-Mesh

Multi-cloud deployment

Multi-cloud deployment is the core of our reference architecture. In our architecture, we recommend a single SDN controller running in the cloud that manages all the edge deployments as one head. The cloud deployment (any public cloud) and the edge rollouts are connected through an IP/MPLS backbone using gateways.

To have a light deployment at the edge, we keep control functions in the cloud.

Figure 3: Multi-cloud Deployment

In the diagram below, the multi-cloud deployment allows for extending Packet Forwarding Control Protocol (PFCP) network from cloud to Edge for UPF connectivity with the components in the cloud. Similarly, it allows for extending the NGAP/SCTP and GTPU networks. The UPF on the edge is provided access to Data Network using traffic steering with CG-NAT/firewall.

Figure 4: 5G Reference Deployment

Note: Currently our solution extends this functionality using Tungsten Fabric as the SDN controller. However, the solution is not bound to Tungsten Fabric alone but can easily be extended for any desired SDN controller.

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