Open networking is growing, but what exactly is open networking?

There seems to be a lot of speculation and various interpretations of what defines an “open network”.  Some lean towards interoperability with standards based tech, while others subscribe to a completely open-source/open-api model to qualify.

At the end of day the open network model aims to deliver on increasing standards-based interoperability, improving security of infrastructure operating software, and to drive innovation.

There are four main pillars to the open network model.

Open Industry Standards – The network infrastructure should be based on Open Industry Standards. Inclusive of the protocols that devices use to interact within a network, or externally across their peers you need an architecture that’s open at every stage of the transmission.

Open APIs – Adaptability and agility generally increases when you are able to program your infrastructure as code. Software defined infrastructure provides a unified API across the underlying infrastructure, which is made possible because of open amenable APIs at the networking level.

Open Ecosystem – Network ecosystem partners defines how broadly your solution set can be deployed. A closed system by definition prevents others from openly interfacing with your offer, thus stifling collaboration and increasing the time to market.

Open Source – Open source describes software in which the code is written as open source, easily accessible and customized by each individual user. This enables innovation in the marketplace while ensuring that the resulting product is constantly secured by the community that is contributing to it.