The Linux Foundation yesterday announced the formation of  the OPEN-Orchestrator Project (OPEN-O) at Mobile World Congress (MWC). Their aim is to bring the industry together to develop the first open source software framework and orchestrator to enable agile software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV) operations. Early support for OPEN-O comes from Brocade, China Mobile, China Telecom, DynaTrace, Ericsson, F5 Networks, GigaSpaces, Huawei, Infoblox, Intel, KT, Red Hat, Raisecom, Riverbed, and ZTE. OPEN-O is inviting others interested in this technology to participate.

Next-generation networking technologies such as SDN, NFV, and cloud computing are enabling autonomous, real-time telecom operations. As an open source orchestration framework, OPEN-O will integrate open networking technologies and enable carriers to quickly and cost-effectively implement SDN and NFV through open source code development. The project will also aim to accelerate multi-vendor integration, service innovation and improve agility across network operations.

OPEN-O will follow governance practices consistent with Linux Foundation projects, which could include a Technical Steering Committee and an End User Advisory board to ensure alignment of needs between the technical and end-user communities. The project intends to create a development and testing platform as well as build and support an open source developer community.

Chris Wright, vice president and chief technologist of Red Hat comments:

“Open source is already producing significant innovations in NFV and SDN, helping telecommunications to modernize and move to next-generation networks. Management and network operations (MANO) represents a critical pillar of NFV solutions and to achieve real interoperability, it needs to be built collaboratively by open source community efforts. OPEN-O offers the potential to drive even more collaboration and faster innovation, with many industry leaders working together to advance networking operations.”

The news comes a week after the announcement of the Open Connectivity Foundation (OCF), an entity whose goal will be to help unify IoT standards so that companies and developers can create IoT solutions and devices that work seamlessly together. Via cross-industry collaboration, the OCF will work towards unlocking the massive opportunity of the future global IoT segment, accelerate industry innovation and help all developers and companies create solutions that map to a single, open IoT interoperability specification. These specifications will mean that a wide range of consumer, enterprise and embedded devices and sensors from a variety of manufacturers, can securely and seamlessly interact with one another.

The OCF currently sponsors the IoTivity project, with the primary goal of the project to release and maintain an open source, production-quality implementation of  OCF specifications that will, in turn, shape an industry standard. 

Over a hundred businesses and academic bodies have joined the Foundation including Intel, IBM, Cisco, and Honeywell. They strive to get industry consolidation around a common, interoperable approach through a scalable solution – something which will be imperative if the IoT trend continues to grow at its current escalating pace.