Software-Defined Networking (SDN) is what will make 5G possible. So, it only makes sense that Kubernetes and OpenStack expert Mirantis will help AT&T build its next generation SDN-based infrastructure for its 5G network.
This is an eight-figure, three-year deal to build out AT&T 5G's infrastructure using Airship. Airship is a project originally founded by AT&T, SKT, and Intel. It was launched as a pilot Open Infrastructure Project under the OpenStack Foundation in May 2018. Airship is designed to enable telcos to take advantage of on-premises Kubernetes infrastructure to support their SDN infrastructure builds.
Mirantis will collaborate with AT&T and other core contributors to develop Airship's critical features. This work will then be rapidly deployed in production at scale via AT&T's Airship, Kubernetes, and OpenStack-based Network Cloud infrastructure.
Airship takes advantage of Kubernetes to define a unified, declarative, and cloud-native way for telecoms to manage containerized cloud infrastructure services. At the OpenStack Summit in Berlin, AT&T shared its plans to roll Kubernetes on-premise based on Airship to underpin its 5G network.
Mirantis main jobs are:
- Integrate Drydock, an OpenStack declarative host-provisioning system for bare-metal host deployment and Ironic, a bare-metal hypervisor, to provision bare-metal Kubernetes clusters.
- Streamlining initial configuration experience of deploying Kubernetes-native services on premise, making it simpler for telcos to adopt.
- Support for multiple operating systems, to broaden the choice of Virtual network functions (VNFs) and minimize lock-in.
AT&T is calling on Mirantis for this work, Ryan van Wyk, AT&T's assistant VP, explained because, "As we roll out Network Cloud for 5G, our goal at AT&T is to run infrastructure based on open standards like Kubernetes and OpenStack. Mirantis has a long track record of contributing to open source and we are glad to have them collaborate with us on the Airship project."
Besides income, Mirantis will also be integrating much of the resulting code into Mirantis Cloud Platform (MCP). This is Mirantis' core product for telcos and enterprises running on-premise Kubernetes.
Built entirely on open-source projects, AT&T and Mirantis are paving the road for SDN 5G rollouts for all telecoms that wish to avoid proprietary lock-in approaches.