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Vol.8 No.2 (April, 2014) Special Issue on SDN and Its Impact on Advanced ICT Systems

Vol.8 No.2 (April, 2014)

In the Mid-term Management Plan 2015, NEC declared its commitment to the “Social Solutions Business” that will provide ICT-driven advanced social infrastructure. SDN (Software-Defined Networking) is positioned as one of the core ICT assets that will realize this mission. SDN refers to dynamically controlling networks using software and its architecture, and it paves the way for the concrete advances in ICT system, necessary for social infrastructure, from eliminating control obstacles and augmenting the efficiency of infrastructure equipment to system “visualization,”improved security and optimization of ICT resources.
This special issue introduces SDN advanced technologies and NEC SDN Solutions, which contribute to realization of safety, security, efficiency, equality of an information society friendly to humans and the earth, and also introduces case studies.

Special Issue on SDN and Its Impact on Advanced ICT Systems

NIINO Takashi, Senior Executive Vice President,
CSO (Chief Strategy Officer), CIO (Chief Information Officer) and
Member of the Board (Representative Director)

HAYANO Shin-ichiro, KATSUURA Keita

In the Mid-term Management Plan 2015, NEC declared its commitment to the “Social Solutions Business” that will provide ICT-driven advanced social infrastructure. As social infrastructure becomes more sophisticated, ICT systems that encompass entire systems while appropriately responding to the dynamically changing environment are demanded.
This article discusses ICT system issues that will arise in support of future advances in the social infrastructure, and explains the SDN concept for responding to such issues. In addition, while presenting use cases and examples of SDN applications, it examines the value created for society by the ICT system enhancements and the evolution of the IT and network markets.

HAYANO Shin-ichiro, SATOH Yasunori

SDN is the new concept of controlling networks using software. It is now attracting international attention as an approach to achieve advanced ICT systems that can quickly and flexibly cope with changes in social and corporate environments.
This paper introduces, as part of the efforts NEC has made so far, our history for SDN, from the initiation of research to the provision of the world’s first OpenFlow-compatible products. Also discussed in this paper is NEC SDN Solutions, a package of SDN solutions for the problems of customers such as enterprises, government offices and telecommunications carriers.

Takashi Egawa, Shin-ichiro Hayano, Fabian Schneider
Sibylle Schaller, Marcus Schöller, Frank Zdarsky

Software-Defined Networking (SDN) is a new approach to computer networking. The goal is to decouple the network control and forwarding functions in order to allow directly programming the network. Thus the underlying infrastructure is abstracted for applications and network services. This paper introduces the ongoing activities of ONF, NFV, ITU-T, IETF, OpenDaylight, OpenStack, and other organizations in the SDN space. It offers an overview of the future direction of proposed standards as well as NEC’s involvement in these processes.

NEC Enterprise SDN Solutions

MIYAUCHI Mikio, NUMAZAKI Takeshi, OKU Yasuhiro,

A lot of companies built own corporate networks. WAN connects these corporate networks between offices and data centers. The corporate network consists of a backbone network, computer network, Internet connection and telephony systems. Network traffic patterns of these networks have different characteristics (different peak/off-peak times), which have redundant bandwidths constantly somewhere in the corporate network. The corporate executives who expect to improve the cost efficiency of networks, especially decreasing the connection fee of communication lines, and improving flexibility for the WAN usages. Moreover flexible WAN usage such as use of datacenter services, ensuring BC/DR (business continuity/disaster recovery) and use of public cloud services are required to support.
This paper discusses our solutions to optimize WANs between offices and datacenters that allow our customers to solve the issues.

KAWAI Hideki, OMINO Takayuki, SHIBAHARA Hideo,

In order to avoid information leakage, strict security such as sliced network access is essential for departments and projects. Because they need to process highly confidential information such as customer details and component design data, etc. Providing a granular access control may improve security efficiency, however, such a tight access control system sometimes poses issues, e.g., high system management costs and difficulties in quickly coping with the ever changing company organization environments. This paper introduces NEC’s “Access Authentication Solutions,” which reduce system management costs while also improving security. This is achieved by providing automated settings to server networks based on user’s human resource information. Software-Defined Networking (SDN) technology is an essential feature in effecting this approach.

NEC Data Center SDN Solutions

KUROGOUCHI Yuuji, SATOH Yasunori, KOSEKI Takayuki

Although new technologies for allocating virtual IT resources and automating operations management are increasingly being introduced in data center environments, the network environment is incapable of following them, making it impossible to perform efficient operations management based on integration of IT and networks.
This paper introduces an automation solution for improving the efficiency of IT and network operations management in an IaaS environment. It implements integrated network environment management by introducing UNIVERGE PF1000 and UNIVERGE PF6800 (OpenFlow), which apply OpenFlow technology to Hyper-V virtual switches, and additionally achieves integrated control with Microsoft System Center.

Latest technologies supporting NEC SDN Solutions


The advent of SDN has removed the constraints brought about by rigid control protocols, thereby enabling a flexible description of control software as an SDN controller, which meets the needs of network operators. Further simplification in creating SDN controllers will become an issue in the need to create more SDN controllers quickly. This paper proposes a network abstraction model that makes it possible to simplify the description for the virtualization of network resources and the implementation of complex path control algorithms while absorbing differences in control protocols between network devices. It is also shown that an SDN controller can be created quickly and simply using the SDN controller platform prototype that was designed based on the proposed model.

IIHOSHI Takahiro, SAIDA Yoshinori, WATANABE Yoshikazu

With the widespread dissemination of Wi-Fi hotspots in the public area and Wi-Fi access points in individual homes, the number of Wi-Fi users of smart devices has increased. Acceleration in the practical use of a network access standard called ANDSF has also provided users with more convenience when using Wi-Fi communications. However, ANDSF-compliant smart devices have not been available with the conventional communications technology. NEC Knowledge Discovery Research Laboratories is challenging improvements in the efficiency and usability of Wi-Fi communications. In order to achieve this, the laboratory is focusing on the flexible communication control functions that are characteristics of the nature of OpenFlow and on how to use them optimally to control the communication functions of smart devices. This paper introduces technologies enabling smart devices that are compliant to ANDSF.

CHIBA Yasunobu, SUGYOU Kazushi

When applying centralized network architecture such as OpenFlow to large-scale networks, the issue arises of how to ensure the scalability and reliability of the controller providing the network control functions. This paper proposes a new controller architecture that leverages design patterns widely used in client-server systems to perform network control. Moreover, by applying this architecture to an OpenFlow controller providing virtual layer 2 networks for data centers, it shows the feasibility of applying an OpenFlow controller to large-scale SDN networks.


Integrated control of heterogeneous networks including data center and wide-area networks is needed in order to reduce the delay of service setup and to improve the quality of end-to-end communication services with lower cost. However, current control systems cannot be accommodated to evolving communication services because these systems adopt models and control methods for the specific layers.
In order to resolve this issue, NEC proposes an SDN platform for multi-layer networks based on a layer-independent model and control method. In this paper, we apply this platform to the multi-layer control of a packet-optical transport network and integrated control of OpenFlow and VXLAN networks.

SUZUKI Kazuya, KANEKO Hiroya

An IP-VPN service harnessing MPLS technology employs BGP to propagate a customer route. IP-VPN using BGP has an issue that it has to provide services that do not exceed the data processing capability of each router in the network. This issue occurs because the number of BGP-compliant routes is increased when new customers are added to the network. This paper proposes an OpenFlow controller that is compatible with IP-VPN in order to solve such issues. The proposed methodology enables the controller to conduct the entire BGP processing so that the control resource management that used to be carried out at each router may now be avoided.

Case study

The network infrastructure created by Kanazawa University Hospital has been expanding under the pressure of the individual needs of each department and laboratory and has thereby become too complex to be managed effectively. Moreover, under the constraints of such a complex network system, it has been increasingly difficult to operate the new equipment that is frequently added to the network. This situation has resulted inevitably in too much time and effort being spent in changing the network settings accordingly. In consequence the Kanazawa University Hospital has decided to introduce NEC’s OpenFlow compliant “UNIVERGE PF Series” network solution and has thus received various benefits including reductions for network management and operations load. The hospital is now planning to extend the employment of OpenFlow in their network. OpenFlow is expected to realize universal connectivity, by which the appropriate network policy of medical equipment such as portable diagnostic devices will be applied once it is connected, regardless of which LAN port is used for a connection.

Minaminihon Information Processing Center (MIC) provides system integration and data center services mainly in the Kyushu region, Japan. MIC aims to expand its business and is embarking on a reform of its data center, which serves as a key foundation for its various businesses. MIC’s plan is to implement SDN (Software-Defined Networking) by introducing NEC’s UNIVERGE PF series network solution. This makes it possible to offer various benefits and high-value-added services: quick network infrastructure construction for virtual hosting services, improved price competitiveness through reduced management loads and costs for network changes, enhanced reliability through fast network recovery when a failure occurs, interruption-free maintenance, etc.

General Papers

SONOBE Satoshi, MORIMOTO Shinichi

Accompanied by the recent expansion of mobile base station networks (LTE and small cell,) the trend towards larger capacities is typically affecting the backhaul network. In addition to using conventional radio transmission devices configured with IDU (indoor unit: baseband section + radio modulator/demodulator section) and ODU (outdoor unit: radio transmitter/receiver section), we have now developed an All Outdoor Radio (AOR). This device integrates the IDU/ODU functions via the utilization of a high-frequency radio bandwidth suited to larger capacities. It thereby enables the wireless backhaul construction of mobile base station networks that can be easily achieved while simultaneously increasing their capacities. This paper introduces NEC’s AOR device lineup as well as the various technologies of the iPASOLINK SX (60-GHz band)/EX (70 to 80-GHz band), those use a high-frequency radio bandwidth, and also discusses our intensions regarding further developments.

KAWAI Masahiro , AOKI Yuu , ADACHI Takahiro

To respond to the need to increase the capacity and efficiency of the mobile backhaul circuit of the PASOLINK series of microwave radio communications systems, NEC has developed a system applying 2048QAM super-multilevel modulation technology for the first time in the world and has released it as part of its menu of iPASOLINK series products.
This paper introduces the iPASOLINK system as well as the super-multilevel modulation and baseband technologies that make large-capacity communications possible.

SASAKI Eisaku, MARU Tsuguo

Demand for higher-capacity wireless mobile backhaul has been increasing in recent years, making the achievement of 10 Gbps transmission a significant target. Microwaves have conventionally been used in this field; however, microwaves have reached the limit of capacity expansion and a broader bandwidth is needed to achieve increased capacity. Therefore, there is an increasing expectation for millimeter wave, especially E-band, which can ensure broadband speed. This paper introduces LOS-MIMO as a component technology for a 10 Gbps transmission system in E-band currently under development, as well as NEC’s approach to an increase in wireless transmission capacity.

TOYAO Hiroshi, HANKUI Eiji, KOBAYASHI Hayato, ANDO Toshikazu

The rapid size reduction of wireless equipment has led to a drop in the communication performance caused by the electromagnetic noise that is generated inside the equipment becoming an important issue. The electromagnetic bandgap (EBG) structure that is a kind of metamaterial is attracting attention as a new technology for reducing electromagnetic noise. This paper introduces a newly developed EBG structure, which is a technology developed originally by NEC. Wi-Fi home router products that apply this structure as a world first technology are also discussed.