End-to-End Hybrid Deployment of 5G Network Services and Applications on AWS
In this blog, we describe how Cloudify, AWS, Intel, Proto, and Mavenir orchestrate the deployment of a 5G core network as well as deploying applications that utilize these 5G services.
At MWC 2022, we showcased the intend-based orchestration demonstrating that SLA based KPI can be used to place a workload anywhere in the cloud continuum, using AWS EKS for workload in Region, LocalZone, and Outposts. We extended our Cloudify integration to leverage EKS-A for legacy workloads running on x86 servers, for example, Dell PowerEdge servers. You can read the full blog from last year here.
This year, we will provision and manage the lifecycle of both 5G network services, functions, and Edge applications. For an application, we partnered with Proto Hologram to broadcast a hologram from a captured video stream that traverses a mobility network running on AWS. It goes through multiple transformations and broadcasts back to a hologram device, like a 3D TV, located at the far edge. We will demonstrate this in real-time at the MWC 2023 exhibition in the AWS booth.
In this blog, we will concentrate on the partnership between AWS, Intel, and Cloudify to highlight how the orchestration of a network and an application layer can happen simultaneously and automatically. We will highlight the integration point between Cloudify and AWS Telco Network Builder, and show how an edge application provider, Proto, can use the same automation flow for a unified experience.
This work represents an evolution of success from MWC 2022 by “Unifying 5G service orchestration from the network edge to the cloud using AWS”. We added Proto and Mavenir to this demonstration. Proto provides the hologram application that runs on top of the 5G core services and Mavenir provides cloud-native network functions. Cloudify integrates with AWS ZeTA Framework, a series of operational tools that help customers with operational automation, to deploy the best-of-breed cloud-native network function from Mavenir.
What will we demonstrate?
- Cloudify native integration with AWS Telco Network Builder
- Orchestration of networks and deployment of edge applications in minutes
- Traffic carrying CU and 5GC workload on AWS infrastructure
- Traffic carrying DU workload leveraging Intel FlexRAN on EKS-A on Intel x86
- SLA of Cloud network resources
- End user ordering of an application orchestrated on a 5G network
The diagram below shows the overall picture and how Cloudify orchestrates the different components. Cloudify is an end-to-end automation solution, built for modern cloud environments. Cloudify can orchestrate various cloud services, including infrastructure services, network services, as well as application services.
Here we show how Cloudify provisions 5G network services and network functions on AWS cloud and AWS edge environments. This is done by invoking AWS TNB via ETSI SOL003 and SOL005 standard APIs. We can also see that the Proto hologram is provisioned and a video stream taken is displayed via the Proto app on the hologram device.
There are four main business objectives:
- Focus on common edge applications like Video Analytics, Gaming, and Holographic, and demonstrate the intertwining between network and edge applications.
- Show how we simplify the complexity of deployment of a 5G hybrid network through the richness and diversity of the network ecosystem i.e. multi-vendors and across the edge continuum
- For application ISVs, they don’t need to be aware of the underlying network and its complexity
- For technical people, we will demonstrate the details of end-to-end (E2E) 5G network deployment and Edge application on AWS Cloud throughout the AWS Edge continuum (i.e. AWS Regions, Local Zones, Outposts, EKS-A)
As we can see from the first diagram above, Cloudify interacts with an ordering system that triggers the provisioning of the network services as well as the Proto Hologram application on top.
Network Service Provisioning
Cloudify uses the ETSI SOL03 and SOL05 to deploy and manage the life cycles of the network services (NSDs) and network functions (NFDs). Among them are the UPF, PCF, NRF, AMF, etc., as seen in the deployment topology diagram below.
Cloudify is fully integrated with AWS Telco Network Builder to simplify the life-cycle management of network operations such as instantiation, update, termination, and deletion.
Each component is defined in a Cloudify Blueprint and the lines show the dependencies between the components. Below you can see an example of such a blueprint definition.
The instantiation and execution of the above network services and functions can be seen in the Cloudify “Execution Task Graph” below. Green means deployed and running and lines denote dependency and precedence between components.
Looking at the AWS console, we can see ten provisioned network functions, as seen in the figure below.
Application Service Provisioning
Now, after deploying the core 5G network services, we are ready to deploy the application on top. Cloudify comes with a self-service marketplace, full of applications and network services that someone can choose from. A screenshot of the Cloudify Marketplace is shown below.
We chose a unique hologram application from Proto. It captures a video stream at one end and broadcasts it to multiple locations at the other end.
The deployed blueprints for the network services and the Proto application can be seen in Cloudify as shown in the next figure.
An example of a hologram broadcast can be seen below. Look at the shoe, it really looks like it’s real, a 3D view.
The video stream is captured on a client machine or a mobile phone. Then it is transmitted to a broadcaster in the cloud, which broadcasts the stream to multiple kiosks, which hosts the hologram devices. It presents it in a 3D format.
Cloudify orchestrates the allocation of broadcasters in the cloud and stitches the network traffic to the right broadcasters and back to the hologram device. An example of a blueprint that allocates a broadcaster on the AWS cloud is shown in the picture below.
Real-time statistics from the Proto broadcaster are displayed, as can be seen in the screenshot below.
The Proto stream capture device (e.g. iPhone) and the hologram device are deployed at the far edge. This means that we utilize a 5G network here. The origin video stream is transmitted over RAN from the mobile device through the RAN to the 5G core and the Internet. It gets to the broadcaster, which sends it all the way back to the hologram device, which is also located on the far edge. For the far edge, we used EKS-A to deploy the DU as a pod on top. At the MWC show, we’ll capture a video stream at the Intel booth, send it to the 5G core, the broadcaster, and back to the hologram device, which is located at the AWS booth.
This demo shows how we support 5G innovations for new business capabilities in a simple way. We orchestrate networks and deploy edge applications in minutes.
We use intent-based orchestration to integrate infrastructure, network, application, and SLA assurance. Intent-based abstracts the underlying 5G network from the application, so application ISVs don’t need to know or mess up with all the underlying network complexities. The magic is done behind the scenes.
Doing so, we push 5G network services and applications one step forward, to become ubiquitous and simple, like cloud services today.
A video that shows the end-to-end provisioning scenario can be seen here.