Nowadays, network operators have faced unprecedented growth in data traffic since the introduction of smartphones and tablets, and they have to accommodate the service demands and expand their bandwidth in the ever-increasing competition, causing profitability to dry up. Thus, the concept of CORD (Central Office Re-architected as a Datacenter) was mainly introduced for economic and agility purposes.
The CORD leverages NFV, SDN and cloud services to redefine Telco Central Office. In concept, CORE is introduced to revolutionize the edge of the network, which is the connection between network operators and customers, with cost-effectiveness and agility in service delivery through the adoption of software-defined architecture and commodity hardware, which means, white-box Intel x86 appliances. In a 5G mobile edge infrastructure, Cloud RAN is also leveraged in CORD to build up a disaggregated virtual network service, known as M-CORD. In short, CORD is the solution to reduce the OPEX and CAPEX by offering unified hardware and software components, instead of purpose-built ones that cause obstacles for innovative, wide deployments.
A worldwide networking DMS (Design, Manufacturing, and Service) supplier in Taiwan teamed up with Lanner to come up with a high-availability and high-redundancy hardware solution to meet M-CORD requirements.
NFV and SDN are the two founding blocks of CORE deployment, and thus the validation with the two software and virtual infrastructures are mandatory. In addition, this pre-validation is necessary for major VNF vendors, Cloud RAN and 5G mobile edge computing.
Currently, the transfer delay is about 40~80 millisecond if the data is transferred without going through edge computing system, while LTE delay latency is about 10 millisecond. In near future, the ultimate aim for 5G standard is around below 5 milliseconds. Therefore, the required white-box must offer high-performance and ultra throughputs for the network edge to achieve the goal of ultra low latency.
Server-grade performance, flexibility and high availability
Since the CORD is defined for Telco Central Office, the hardware solution from the joint effort shall be NEBS-ready with high availability/reliability. To ensure 24/7 uptimes, full-redundancy design and multiple network I/O blade for high-speed switch capacity are essential to support M-CORD applications. Since performance is critical in running CORD, the white-box is powered by Intel x86 server-grade processors to deliver the needed compute capability.
Lanner Solution – HybridTCA™ Platform at Mobile CORD
In the joint effort, Lanner successfully integrated the wired/wireless domain know-how into its HybridTCA™ series HTCA-6600, a high-availability 6U white-box server. HTCA-6600, empowered by Intel® Xeon® server-grade CPU blades, switch fabric enabled networking I/O blades and full-redundancy design, seamlessly converged compute, storage and network into one hardware appliance to perform the functions necessary for CORD (including M-CORD).
HTCA-6600, powered by 12 dual Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2600v4 CPUs with a total of 264 core counts, DDR4 memory bandwidth and Intel SR-IOV/ AVX-512 new instructions for accelerated packet processing, can optimize CORD deployments. Being a NEBS-ready white-box server, HTCA-6600 supports full-redundancy design to ensure 24/7 uptimes and reliabilities.