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The Metro Ethernet Forum said the rapidly growing SD-WAN market needs certifications and standards.

James Anderson

January 7, 2020

3 Min Read
Certificate

The Metro Ethernet Forum (MEF) has recognized three vendors for meeting its new SD-WAN certification requirements.

Infovista, Nuage Networks and Versa Networks became the first companies to pass through the MEF 3.0 SD-WAN certification program. MEF, which calls itself  “the world’s defining authority for standardized network services,” judged vendors via a committee and enlisted U.K.-based telecommunications testing firm Spirent Communications to assist the evaluation.

Chen, Nan_MEF

MEF’s Nan Chen

“SD-WAN is gaining incredible excitement and momentum for empowering digital transformation,” MEF president Nan Chen said. “We congratulate Nuage Networks, Versa Networks and Infovista for achieving MEF 3.0 certification and demonstrating that they are a standards-based partner for service providers developing SD-WAN services. We look forward to continued momentum with the MEF 3.0 SD-WAN certification program, including the announcement of our first group of certified service providers later this quarter.”

Infovista chief product officer Mike Wilkinson said the new certification will help customers pick out vendors that offer the best service consistency and interoperability.

“Infovista is proud to have successfully completed the MEF 3.0 SD-WAN certification,” Wilkinson said. “We view our MEF 3.0 certification as a key milestone in addressing the requirements of both service providers and enterprises.”

MEF launched its SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70) standards last summer, publishing a 57-page paper (which you can view here) that details the certification requirements. The many requirements include an SD-WAN virtual connection, at least two SD-WAN user-to-network-interfaces (UNI) and an SD-WAN virtual connection end point at each UNI.

Sunil Khandekar, head of the Nokia-owned Nuage, said SD-WAN demand is escalating alongside the desire to utilize it as a managed service.

“The availability of the MEF 3.0 SD-WAN technology vendor certification is an important step in providing enterprises an industry benchmark for vendor selection and Nuage Networks from Nokia is proud to demonstrate its SD-WAN market leadership as a member of the first group to achieve this certification milestone,” Khandekar said.

MEF defines SD-WAN as “an application-aware, policy-driven connectivity service, offered by a service provider, that optimizes transport of IP packets over multiple underlay networks.”

Versa co-founder and chief development officer Kumar Mehta said more than 60% of enterprises will deploy SD-WAN in the next two to four years. Mehta stressed the need for the burgeoning industry to create more standards, and he’s not alone in his sentiments. Heavy Reading found that 73% of service-provider professionals described certifications as critical or important to driving the market’s growth.

“… Service providers needed to come together and establish standards, to help enterprises understand what they are buying and evaluate different solutions to accelerate services across automated networks,” Mehta said.

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About the Author(s)

James Anderson

Senior News Editor, Channel Futures

James Anderson is a news editor for Channel Futures. He interned with Informa while working toward his degree in journalism from Arizona State University, then joined the company after graduating. He writes about SD-WAN, telecom and cablecos, technology services distributors and carriers. He has served as a moderator for multiple panels at Channel Partners events.

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