Open Networking Foundation Unveils Atrium, an Open SDN Software Distribution


Atrium, an open software distribution for SDN (software defined networking), has been released by the Open Networking Foundation (ONF). ESnet is among the contributors to the software release and ESnet Chief Technologist Inder Monga is an ONF research associate. Atrium is designed to help the networking industry as a whole more easily adopt open SDN by integrating established open source SDN software with some critical connecting pieces. Read the Atrium news release.

ESnet’s work with the ONF reflects the network’s strong role in advancing SDN, which goes back to the development of OSCARS, the On-demand Secure Circuits and Advance Reservation System, an advanced software system for booking time and resources on high-speed science networks.

In recognition of ESnet’s leadership in SDN, ESnet’s Monga was asked to organize a two-day workshop in Washington, D.C. to plan a path forward to develop, deploy and operate a prototype SDN network. The December 2013 invitation-only workshop, co-sponsored by DOE, Networking and Information Technology Research and Development (NITRD) and the National Science Foundation, drew about 100 networking experts from academia, industry, national labs and federal agencies.

Here are some other examples of ESnet’s role as a leader in SDN.

In May 2015, ESnet was a member of a team deploying an ONOS-based software-defined peering router at AARNet/CSIRO in Australia which exchanged routes with the Vandervecken software-defined networking (SDN) controller stack at ESnet in California. The project successfully exchanged 15,000 routes on a trans-Pacific network link. Read more about this global SDN breakthrough.

In February 2015, ESnet was honored by the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC) as a recipient of the 2015 Innovations in Networking Award for High-Performance Research Applications for their 100-Gigabit Software-Defined Networking (100G SDN) Testbed. The ESnet 100G SDN Testbed provides network researchers with a realistic environment for testing 100G application/middleware experiments. It also supports several 10G paths for SDN experiments, and will be significantly enhanced this summer with new OpenFlow v1.3 hardware. Read more.

In November 2013, ESnet joined Brocade and Infinera in an online demonstration of how SDN can be used to provision services and automatically optimize network resources across a multi-layer network as traffic and service demands change. The demonstration leveraged ESnet’s OSCARS application. Read more.

And in December 2012, ESnet and Infinera demonstrated a prototype SDN Open Transport Switch (OTS) capable of dynamically controlling bandwidth services at the optical layer. The proof-of-concept demo was conducted on a testbed network ring in New York, connecting Brookhaven National Laboratory with a network hub in Manhattan. The demonstration marked the first time an open architecture with SDN was used to provide traffic-engineered paths at the optical layer and was accomplished through extensions to the OpenFlow protocol. Read more.