IP networks are deployed worldwide providing Internet-Connectivity to every corner of earth, however the public internet does not offer the manageability, performance guarantees and security of private networks, be they Layer-1, CE or Layer-3 VPN based.
MEF 3.0 is the transformational global services framework that brings together the best of two worlds: Assured Managed Network Services (from CE) and Agility and Ubiquity (from the Internet). To date MEF has dealt primarily with CE services, but Orchestrated and Managed Services span beyond CE into IP (Layer-3) services and above. Applying MEF 3.0 to Managed IP Services, and creating a MEF Certification program for Managed IP Services for both Vendors and Service Providers, allows the benefits of agile, assured, and orchestrated CE Services to be available for Managed IP Services.
Most Managed-IP services provided today use non-standard methods and are typically vendor and OS version specific. This may not be a major problem when services are delivered on a single platform operated by a single Service Provider, but they become challenging when services need to be delivered across multiple platforms operated by two or more Service Providers. Lack of standard Service Definitions, Information Models, Processes and Architecture leads to separate bilateral arrangements between each pair of Service Providers that partner to deliver services across each other's networks. Such arrangements are slow to establish, difficult to manage and make it almost impossible to enable automation of service delivery.
MEF provides a framework for delivery Managed IP Services through the development of:
- Service Specifications and their associated Information Models.
- Process Specifications (MEF 50, derived from TM-Forum SID).
- Orchestration Reference Architecture (LSO).
- A certification program for Vendors, Service Providers and Individuals.
- Of those four elements above, the later three can be applied to Managed IP Services with only minor changes.
By utilizing MEF 3.0 services, incorporating Managed IP Service Specifications and their associated Information Models, MEF can apply the same design and development principles used to develop CE services and broaden its portfolio into Managed IP services with relatively limited efforts and with fast turnaround.