Developed by Ribbon, the Virtual Network Function Manager (VNFM) is a virtualized management application that provides VNF Lifecycle Management (LCM) for Ribbon VNFs. The VNFM is part of a standard-based ETSI NFV architecture, and works with customer-provided NFV Orchestrators (NFVO) and Virtual Infrastructure Managers (VIM) – the latter being based on OpenStack.
The predominate value of the Ribbon VNFM is the that is significantly automates (and expands) repetitive lifecycle management which are time-consuming and error-prone with other approaches, such as using OpenStack Heat.
VNF Life Cycle Management
The Ribbon VNFM dramatically reduces the cost and effort to deploying and managing Ribbon VNFs. As defined by ETSI, the Ribbon support VNF Instantiation and Termination, but also support Healing, Migrating, Scaling and Upgrading VNFs after they have been deployed. With the Ribbon VNFM, these lifecycle management functions are supported with or without an NFV Orchestrators to provide customer flexible deployment options.
For large-scale deployments, the VNFM supports multiple VNF types, multiple clouds (e.g. OpenStack) and multiple tenants, with two configurations: High Availability (at a single site) and Geographical Redundant (across multiple sites). The Ribbon VNFM, itself a VNF, is based on a multi-tiered, microservices architecture that is common across both the high availability and geographical redundant deployments.