What is Network Functions Platform (NFP) ? – Part II

Network Functions Platform

On the rise, Network Functions Platform (NFP) is directly connected to a more common concept called Network Functions Virtualization (NFV). In “What is Network Functions Virtualization (NFP)—Part I,” you learned that this 2012 network management alternative offered a more streamlined method for virtual network services, for both providers and enterprises. With the coming of NFV as a successful network solution for more and more organizations, NFP is up and coming to offer even more potential.

Taking NFV to a New Level

As enterprises analyze and adopt Network Functions Virtualization for their IT environment in order to accelerate service provisioning and increase efficiencies in a more agile infrastructure, NFP is yet another consideration for those enterprises that have already made an NFV migration. Network Functions Platform (NFP) is a virtualized hardware option that is built to seamlessly run networking virtual appliances and functions. You might think of NFP as a hyped-up virtualized server. This environment is designed from a dual hardware/software angle for heightened, scalable performance. As well, NFP is made to minimize network disruptions in an automated environment with minimal configuration and customization.

How Can NFP Help?

NFV comes with some challenges, and Network Functions Platforms offer some key advantages for virtualized environments that can help meet those challenges.

Mitigate Risks. In a virtualized environment, as with any, there are risks in terms of downtime and system performance. Using an NFP, in-house networking and security teams are fully capable of managing automated processes along with troubleshooting in the case of an event.

Minimize Training. When NFP is incorporated with NFV, many server pain points in terms of specs, CPU, drivers, mapping, and boundary settings can be automated, reducing the need for IT staff training. NFP offers WebUI to simplify service flows. This web-based user interface allows for system configurations and full browser-based control.

Increase in Performance. NFPs provide added performance in terms of Virtual Appliances (VAs) and Virtual Network Functions (VNFs) as compared with commodity servers in which virtualization is not applied. The NFP architecture is built for networking and security with dedicated VA and VNF resources for heightened agility and performance.

Other Features. Expect other important features with NFP including more seamless app delivery along with ease of deployment offered by managed service providers and communications service providers.

There is no question VNF based organizations and service providers that have already migrated to a cloud computing environment have a variety of benefits over offering on-premise solutions. It is how you manage this new environment that may lead to the success or failure of the IT infrastructure. Using a platform-level solution, a successful virtual environment is not only possible but is also likely to be more secure, streamlined, and cost-efficient. NFP ensures management, automation, and orchestration (MANO) as part of your NFV solution. Without it, you may be not be using your services to the fullest.


Useful for Service Providers and IT Organizations

NFP is useful for varying types of service providers along with IT organizational staff. The underlying goal of NFP is to integrate with your already transformed virtual network (VNF) for a functional and efficient virtual environment that meets provider and enterprise needs. Find an expert like RackCo for guidance and support for an optimal cloud-based data center where these important components may be integral to networking success. Prepare your enterprise for the future with current knowledge and support as technology evolves. NFP can help create a smooth transition to VNF—a proven virtual IT environment. NFP with software-defined networking (SDN) may be the direction you want to take your organization. Be sure to select a platform that suits your needs.