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Versions: 00 01

Benchmarking Working Group                       M. Konstantynowicz, Ed.
Internet-Draft                                             P. Mikus, Ed.
Intended status: Informational                             Cisco Systems
Expires: September 12, 2019                               March 11, 2019


                    NFV Service Density Benchmarking
                  draft-mkonstan-nf-service-density-00

Abstract

   Network Function Virtualization (NFV) system designers and operators
   continuously grapple with the problem of qualifying performance of
   network services realised with software Network Functions (NF)
   running on Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) servers.  One of the main
   challenges is getting repeatable and portable benchmarking results
   and using them to derive deterministic operating range that is
   production deployment worthy.

   This document specifies benchmarking methodology for NFV services
   that aims to address this problem space.  It defines a way for
   measuring performance of multiple NFV service instances, each
   composed of multiple software NFs, and running them at a varied
   service "packing" density on a single server.

   The aim is to discover deterministic usage range of NFV system.  In
   addition specified methodology can be used to compare and contrast
   different NFV virtualization technologies.

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
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   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on September 12, 2019.






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Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2019 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (https://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Terminology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   2.  Motivation  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     2.1.  Problem Description . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
     2.2.  Proposed Solution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   3.  NFV Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
     3.1.  Topology  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
     3.2.  Configuration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
     3.3.  Packet Path(s)  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
   4.  Virtualization Technology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   5.  Host Networking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11
   6.  NFV Service Density Matrix  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  12
   7.  Compute Resource Allocation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  13
   8.  NFV Service Density Benchmarks  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  17
     8.1.  Test Methodology - MRR Throughput . . . . . . . . . . . .  17
     8.2.  VNF Service Chain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  18
     8.3.  CNF Service Chain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  18
     8.4.  CNF Service Pipeline  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  19
     8.5.  Sample Results: FD.io CSIT  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  20
     8.6.  Sample Results: CNCF/CNFs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  21
   9.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
   10. Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
   11. Acknowledgements  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
   12. References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
     12.1.  Normative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
     12.2.  Informative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  23
   Authors' Addresses  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  25








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1.  Terminology

   o  NFV - Network Function Virtualization, a general industry term
      describing network functionality implemented in software.

   o  NFV service - a software based network service realized by a
      topology of interconnected constituent software network function
      applications.

   o  NFV service instance - a single instantiation of NFV service.

   o  Data-plane optimized software - any software with dedicated
      threads handling data-plane packet processing e.g.  FD.io VPP
      (Vector Packet Processor), OVS-DPDK.

2.  Motivation

2.1.  Problem Description

   Network Function Virtualization (NFV) system designers and operators
   continuously grapple with the problem of qualifying performance of
   network services realised with software Network Functions (NF)
   running on Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) servers.  One of the main
   challenges is getting repeatable and portable benchmarking results
   and using them to derive deterministic operating range that is
   production deployment worthy.

   Lack of well defined and standardised NFV centric performance
   methodology and metrics makes it hard to address fundamental
   questions that underpin NFV production deployments:

   1.  What NFV service and how many instances can run on a single
       compute node?

   2.  How to choose the best compute resource allocation scheme to
       maximise service yield per node?

   3.  How do different NF applications compare from the service density
       perspective?

   4.  How do the virtualisation technologies compare e.g.  Virtual
       Machines, Containers?

   Getting answers to these points should allow designers to make a data
   based decision about the NFV technology and service design best
   suited to meet requirements of their use cases.  Equally, obtaining
   the benchmarking data underpinning those answers should make it




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   easier for operators to work out expected deterministic operating
   range of chosen design.

2.2.  Proposed Solution

   The primary goal of the proposed benchmarking methodology is to focus
   on NFV technologies used to construct NFV services.  More
   specifically to i) measure packet data-plane performance of multiple
   NFV service instances while running them at varied service "packing"
   densities on a single server and ii) quantify the impact of using
   multiple NFs to construct each NFV service instance and introducing
   multiple packet processing hops and links on each packet path.

   The overarching aim is to discover a set of deterministic usage
   ranges that are of interest to NFV system designers and operators.
   In addition, specified methodology can be used to compare and
   contrast different NFV virtualisation technologies.

   In order to ensure wide applicability of the benchmarking
   methodology, the approach is to separate NFV service packet
   processing from the shared virtualisation infrastructure by
   decomposing the software technology stack into three building blocks:

                 +-------------------------------+
                 |          NFV Service          |
                 +-------------------------------+
                 |   Virtualization Technology   |
                 +-------------------------------+
                 |        Host Networking        |
                 +-------------------------------+

             Figure 1. NFV software technology stack.

   Proposed methodology is complementary to existing NFV benchmarking
   industry efforts focusing on vSwitch benchmarking [RFC8204], [TST009]
   and extends the benchmarking scope to NFV services.

   This document does not describe a complete benchmarking methodology,
   instead it is focusing on system under test configuration part.  Each
   of the compute node configurations identified by (RowIndex,
   ColumnIndex) is to be evaluated for NFV service data-plane
   performance using existing and/or emerging network benchmarking
   standards.  This may include methodologies specified in [RFC2544],
   [TST009], [draft-vpolak-mkonstan-bmwg-mlrsearch] and/or
   [draft-vpolak-bmwg-plrsearch].






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3.  NFV Service

   It is assumed that each NFV service instance is built of one or more
   constituent NFs and is described by: topology, configuration and
   resulting packet path(s).

   Each set of NFs forms an independent NFV service instance, with
   multiple sets present in the host.

3.1.  Topology

   NFV topology describes the number of network functions per service
   instance, and their inter-connections over packet interfaces.  It
   includes all point-to-point virtual packet links within the compute
   node, Layer-2 Ethernet or Layer-3 IP, including the ones to host
   networking data-plane.

   Theoretically, a large set of possible NFV topologies can be realised
   using software virtualisation topologies, e.g. ring, partial -/full-
   mesh, star, line, tree, ladder.  In practice however, only a few
   topologies are in the actual use as NFV services mostly perform
   either bumps-in-a-wire packet operations (e.g. security filtering/
   inspection, monitoring/telemetry) and/or inter-site forwarding
   decisions (e.g.  routing, switching).

   Two main NFV topologies have been identified so far for NFV service
   density benchmarking:

   1.  Chain topology: a set of NFs connect to host data-plane with
       minimum of two virtual interfaces each, enabling host data-plane
       to facilitate NF to NF service chain forwarding and provide
       connectivity with external network.

   2.  Pipeline topology: a set of NFs connect to each other in a line
       fashion with edge NFs homed to host data-plane.  Host data-plane
       provides connectivity with external network.

   Both topologies are shown in figures below.

   NF chain topology:











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   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | |  S1NF1 |  |  S1NF2 |              |  S1NFn |            |
   | |        |  |        |     ....     |        | Service1   |
   | |        |  |        |              |        |            |
   | +-+----+-+  +-+----+-+    +    +    +-+----+-+            |
   |   |    |      |    |      |    |      |    |   Virtual    |
   |   |    |<-CS->|    |<-CS->|    |<-CS->|    |   Interfaces |
   | +-+----+------+----+------+----+------+----+-+            |
   | |                                            | CS: Chain  |
   | |                                            |   Segment  |
   | |             Host Data-Plane                |            |
   | +-+--+----------------------------------+--+-+            |
   |   |  |                                  |  |              |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
       |  |                                  |  |   Physical
       |  |                                  |  |   Interfaces
   +---+--+----------------------------------+--+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                    Traffic Generator                      |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

     Figure 2. NF chain topology forming a service instance.

   NF pipeline topology:























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   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | |  S1NF1 |  |  S1NF2 |              |  S1NFn |            |
   | |        +--+        +--+  ....  +--+        | Service1   |
   | |        |  |        |              |        |            |
   | +-+------+  +--------+              +------+-+            |
   |   |                                        |   Virtual    |
   |   |<-Pipeline Edge          Pipeline Edge->|   Interfaces |
   | +-+----------------------------------------+-+            |
   | |                                            |            |
   | |                                            |            |
   | |             Host Data-Plane                |            |
   | +-+--+----------------------------------+--+-+            |
   |   |  |                                  |  |              |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
       |  |                                  |  |   Physical
       |  |                                  |  |   Interfaces
   +---+--+----------------------------------+--+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                    Traffic Generator                      |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

     Figure 3. NF pipeline topology forming a service instance.

3.2.  Configuration

   NFV configuration includes all packet processing functions in NFs
   including Layer-2, Layer-3 and/or Layer-4-to-7 processing as
   appropriate to specific NF and NFV service design.  L2 sub- interface
   encapsulations (e.g. 802.1q, 802.1ad) and IP overlay encapsulation
   (e.g.  VXLAN, IPSec, GRE) may be represented here too as appropriate,
   although in most cases they are used as external encapsulation and
   handled by host networking data-plane.

   NFV configuration determines logical network connectivity that is
   Layer-2 and/or IPv4/IPv6 switching/routing modes, as well as NFV
   service specific aspects.  In the context of NFV density benchmarking
   methodology the initial focus is on the former.

   Building on the two identified NFV topologies, two common NFV
   configurations are considered:

   1.  Chain configuration:

       *  Relies on chain topology to form NFV service chains.



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       *  NF packet forwarding designs:

          +  IPv4/IPv6 routing.

       *  Requirements for host data-plane:

          +  L2 switching with L2 forwarding context per each NF chain
             segment, or

          +  IPv4/IPv6 routing with IP forwarding context per each NF
             chain segment or per NF chain.

   2.  Pipeline configuration:

       *  Relies on pipeline topology to form NFV service pipelines.

       *  Packet forwarding designs:

          +  IPv4/IPv6 routing.

       *  Requirements for host data-plane:

          +  L2 switching with L2 forwarding context per each NF
             pipeline edge link, or

          +  IPv4/IPv6 routing with IP forwarding context per each NF
             pipeline edge link or per NF pipeline.

3.3.  Packet Path(s)

   NFV packet path(s) describe the actual packet forwarding path(s) used
   for benchmarking, resulting from NFV topology and configuration.
   They are aimed to resemble true packet forwarding actions during the
   NFV service lifecycle.

   Based on the specified NFV topologies and configurations two NFV
   packet paths are taken for benchmarking:

   1.  Snake packet path

       *  Requires chain topology and configuration.

       *  Packets enter the NFV chain through one edge NF and progress
          to the other edge NF of the chain.

       *  Within the chain, packets follow a zigzagging "snake" path
          entering and leaving host data-plane as they progress through
          the NF chain.



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       *  Host data-plane is involved in packet forwarding operations
          between NIC interfaces and edge NFs, as well as between NFs in
          the chain.

   2.  Pipeline packet path

       *  Requires pipeline topology and configuration.

       *  Packets enter the NFV chain through one edge NF and progress
          to the other edge NF of the pipeline.

       *  Within the chain, packets follow a straight path entering and
          leaving subsequent NFs as they progress through the NF
          pipeline.

       *  Host data-plane is involved in packet forwarding operations
          between NIC interfaces and edge NFs only.

   Both packet paths are shown in figures below.

   Snake packet path:

   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | |  S1NF1 |  |  S1NF2 |              |  S1NFn |            |
   | |        |  |        |     ....     |        | Service1   |
   | |  XXXX  |  |  XXXX  |              |  XXXX  |            |
   | +-+X--X+-+  +-+X--X+-+    +X  X+    +-+X--X+-+            |
   |   |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|   Virtual    |
   |   |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|   Interfaces |
   | +-+X--X+------+X--X+------+X--X+------+X--X+-+            |
   | |  X  XXXXXXXXXX  XXXXXXXXXX  XXXXXXXXXX  X  |            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X          Host Data-Plane             X  |            |
   | +-+X-+----------------------------------+-X+-+            |
   |   |X |                                  | X|              |
   +----X--------------------------------------X---------------+
       |X |                                  | X|   Physical
       |X |                                  | X|   Interfaces
   +---+X-+----------------------------------+-X+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                    Traffic Generator                      |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

       Figure 4. Snake packet path thru NF chain topology.



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   Pipeline packet path:

   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | |  S1NF1 |  |  S1NF2 |              |  S1NFn |            |
   | |        +--+        +--+  ....  +--+        | Service1   |
   | |  XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX    XXXXXXXXXXXX  |            |
   | +--X-----+  +--------+              +-----X--+            |
   |   |X                                      X|   Virtual    |
   |   |X                                      X|   Interfaces |
   | +-+X--------------------------------------X+-+            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X          Host Data-Plane             X  |            |
   | +-+X-+----------------------------------+-X+-+            |
   |   |X |                                  | X|              |
   +----X--------------------------------------X---------------+
       |X |                                  | X|   Physical
       |X |                                  | X|   Interfaces
   +---+X-+----------------------------------+-X+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                    Traffic Generator                      |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

     Figure 5. Pipeline packet path thru NF pipeline topology.

   In all cases packets enter NFV system via shared physical NIC
   interfaces controlled by shared host data-plane, are then associated
   with specific NFV service (based on service discriminator) and
   subsequently are cross- connected/switched/routed by host data-plane
   to and through NF topologies per one of above listed schemes.

4.  Virtualization Technology

   NFV services are built of composite isolated NFs, with virtualisation
   technology providing the workload isolation.  Following
   virtualisation technology types are considered for NFV service
   density benchmarking:

   1.  Virtual Machines (VMs)

       *  Relying on host hypervisor technology e.g.  KVM, ESXi, Xen.

       *  NFs running in VMs are referred to as VNFs.




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   2.  Containers

       *  Relying on Linux container technology e.g.  LXC, Docker.

       *  NFs running in Containers are referred to as CNFs.

   Different virtual interface types are available to VNFs and CNFs:

   1.  VNF

       *  virtio-vhostuser: fully user-mode based virtual interface.

       *  virtio-vhostnet: involves kernel-mode based backend.

   2.  CNF

       *  memif: fully user-mode based virtual interface.

       *  af_packet: involves kernel-mode based backend.

       *  (add more common ones)

5.  Host Networking

   Host networking data-plane is the central shared resource that
   underpins creation of NFV services.  It handles all of the
   connectivity to external physical network devices through physical
   network connections using NICs, through which the benchmarking is
   done.

   Assuming that NIC interface resources are shared, here is the list of
   widely available host data-plane options for providing packet
   connectivity to/from NICs and constructing NFV chain and pipeline
   topologies and configurations:

   o  Linux Kernel-Mode Networking.

   o  Linux User-Mode vSwitch.

   o  Virtual Machine vSwitch.

   o  Linux Container vSwitch.

   o  SRIOV NIC Virtual Function - note: restricted support for chain
      and pipeline topologies, as it requires hair-pinning through the
      NIC and oftentimes also through external physical switch.





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   Analysing properties of each of these options and their Pros/Cons for
   specified NFV topologies and configurations is outside the scope of
   this document.

   From all listed options, performance optimised Linux user-mode
   vswitch deserves special attention.  Linux user-mode switch decouples
   NFV service from the underlying NIC hardware, offers rich multi-
   tenant functionality and most flexibility for supporting NFV
   services.  But in the same time it is consuming compute resources and
   is harder to benchmark in NFV service density scenarios.

   Following sections focus on using Linux user-mode vSwitch, focusing
   on its performance benchmarking at increasing levels of NFV service
   density.

6.  NFV Service Density Matrix

   In order to evaluate performance of multiple NFV services running on
   a compute node, NFV service instances are benchmarked at increasing
   density, allowing to construct an NFV Service Density Matrix.
   Table below shows an example of such a matrix, capturing number of
   NFV service instances (row indices), number of NFs per service
   instance (column indices) and resulting total number of NFs (values).

   NFV Service Density - NF Count View

   SVC   001   002   004   006   008   00N
   001     1     2     4     6     8   1*N
   002     2     4     8    12    16   2*N
   004     4     8    16    24    32   4*N
   006     6    12    24    36    48   6*N
   008     8    16    32    48    64   8*N
   00M   M*1   M*2   M*4   M*6   M*8   M*N

   RowIndex:     Number of NFV Service Instances, 1..M.
   ColumnIndex:  Number of NFs per NFV Service Instance, 1..N.
   Value:        Total number of NFs running in the system.

   In order to deliver good and repeatable network data-plane
   performance, NFs and host data-plane software require direct access
   to critical compute resources.  Due to a shared nature of all
   resources on a compute node, a clearly defined resource allocation
   scheme is defined in the next section to address this.

   In each tested configuration host data-plane is a gateway between the
   external network and the internal NFV network topologies.  Offered
   packet load is generated and received by an external traffic
   generator per usual benchmarking practice.



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   It is proposed that initial benchmarks are done with the offered
   packet load distributed equally across all configured NFV service
   instances.  This could be followed by various per NFV service
   instance load ratios mimicking expected production deployment
   scenario(s).

   Following sections specify compute resource allocation, followed by
   examples of applying NFV service density methodology to VNF and CNF
   benchmarking use cases.

7.  Compute Resource Allocation

   Performance optimized NF and host data-plane software threads require
   timely execution of packet processing instructions and are very
   sensitive to any interruptions (or stalls) to this execution e.g. cpu
   core context switching, or cpu jitter.  To that end, NFV service
   density methodology treats controlled mapping ratios of data plane
   software threads to physical processor cores with directly allocated
   cache hierarchies as the first order requirement.

   Other compute resources including memory bandwidth and PCIe bandwidth
   have lesser impact and as such are subject for further study.  For
   more detail and deep-dive analysis of software data plane performance
   and impact on different shared compute resources is available in
   [BSDP].

   It is assumed that NFs as well as host data-plane (e.g. vswitch) are
   performance optimized, with their tasks executed in two types of
   software threads:

   o  data-plane - handling data-plane packet processing and forwarding,
      time critical, requires dedicated cores.  To scale data-plane
      performance, most NF apps use multiple data-plane threads and rely
      on NIC RSS (Receive Side Scaling), virtual interface multi-queue
      and/or integrated software hashing to distribute packets across
      the data threads.

   o  main-control - handling application management, statistics and
      control-planes, less time critical, allows for core sharing.  For
      most NF apps this is a single main thread, but often statistics
      (counters) and various control protocol software are run in
      separate threads.

   Core mapping scheme described below allocates cores for all threads
   of specified type belonging to each NF app instance, and separately
   lists number of threads to a number of logical/physical core mappings
   for processor configurations with enabled/disabled Symmetric Multi-
   Threading (SMT) (e.g.  AMD SMT, Intel Hyper-Threading).



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   If NFV service density benchmarking is run on server nodes with
   Symmetric Multi-Threading (SMT) (e.g.  AMD SMT, Intel Hyper-
   Threading) for higher performance and efficiency, logical cores
   allocated to data- plane threads should be allocated as pairs of
   sibling logical cores corresponding to the hyper-threads running on
   the same physical core.

   Separate core ratios are defined for mapping threads of vSwitch and
   NFs.  In order to get consistent benchmarking results, the mapping
   ratios are enforced using Linux core pinning.









































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   +-------------+--------+----------+----------------+----------------+
   | application | thread | app:core | threads/pcores | threads/lcores |
   |             |  type  |  ratio   | (SMT disabled) |    map (SMT    |
   |             |        |          |                |    enabled)    |
   +-------------+--------+----------+----------------+----------------+
   |  vSwitch-1c |  data  |   1:1    |    1DT/1PC     |    2DT/2LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |  main  |   1:S2   |    1MT/S2PC    |    1MT/1LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |  vSwitch-2c |  data  |   1:2    |    2DT/2PC     |    4DT/4LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |  main  |   1:S2   |    1MT/S2PC    |    1MT/1LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |  vSwitch-4c |  data  |   1:4    |    4DT/4PC     |    8DT/8LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |  main  |   1:S2   |    1MT/S2PC    |    1MT/1LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |   NF-0.5c   |  data  |   1:S2   |    1DT/S2PC    |    1DT/1LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |  main  |   1:S2   |    1MT/S2PC    |    1MT/1LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |    NF-1c    |  data  |   1:1    |    1DT/1PC     |    2DT/2LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |  main  |   1:S2   |    1MT/S2PC    |    1MT/1LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |    NF-2c    |  data  |   1:2    |    2DT/2PC     |    4DT/4LC     |
   |             |        |          |                |                |
   |             |  main  |   1:S2   |    1MT/S2PC    |    1MT/1LC     |
   +-------------+--------+----------+----------------+----------------+

   o  Legend to table

      *  Header row

         +  application - network application with optimized data-plane,
            a vSwitch or Network Function (NF) application.





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         +  thread type - either "data", short for data-plane; or
            "main", short for all main-control threads.

         +  app:core ratio - ratio of per application instance threads
            of specific thread type to physical cores.

         +  threads/pcores (SMT disabled) - number of threads of
            specific type (DT for data-plane thread, MT for main thread)
            running on a number of physical cores, with SMT disabled.

         +  threads/lcores map (SMT enabled) - number of threads of
            specific type (DT, MT) running on a number of logical cores,
            with SMT enabled.  Two logical cores per one physical core.

      *  Content rows

         +  vSwitch-(1c|2c|4c) - vSwitch with 1 physical core (or 2, or
            4) allocated to its data-plane software worker threads.

         +  NF-(0.5c|1c|2c) - NF application with half of a physical
            core (or 1, or 2) allocated to its data-plane software
            worker threads.

         +  Sn - shared core, sharing ratio of (n).

         +  DT - data-plane thread.

         +  MT - main-control thread.

         +  PC - physical core, with SMT/HT enabled has many (mostly 2
            today) logical cores associated with it.

         +  LC - logical core, if more than one lc get allocated in sets
            of two sibling logical cores running on the same physical
            core.

         +  SnPC - shared physical core, sharing ratio of (n).

         +  SnLC - shared logical core, sharing ratio of (n).

   Maximum benchmarked NFV service densities are limited by a number of
   physical cores on a compute node.

   A sample physical core usage view is shown in the matrix below.







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   NFV Service Density - Core Usage View
   vSwitch-1c, NF-1c

   SVC   001   002   004   006   008   010
   001     2     3     6     9    12    15
   002     3     6    12    18    24    30
   004     6    12    24    36    48    60
   006     9    18    36    54    72    90
   008    12    24    48    72    96   120
   010    15    30    60    90   120   150

   RowIndex:     Number of NFV Service Instances, 1..10.
   ColumnIndex:  Number of NFs per NFV Service Instance, 1..10.
   Value:        Total number of physical processor cores used for NFs.

8.  NFV Service Density Benchmarks

   To illustrate defined NFV service density applicability, following
   sections describe three sets of NFV service topologies and
   configurations that have been benchmarked in open-source: i) in
   [LFN-FDio-CSIT], a continuous testing and data-plane benchmarking
   project, and ii) as part of CNCF CNF Testbed initiative
   [CNCF-CNF-Testbed].

   In both cases each NFV service instance definition is based on the
   same set of NF applications, and varies only by network addressing
   configuration to emulate multi-tenant operating environment.

8.1.  Test Methodology - MRR Throughput

   Initial NFV density throughput benchmarks have been performed using
   Maximum Receive Rate (MRR) test methodology defined and used in FD.io
   CSIT.

   MRR tests measure the packet forwarding rate under the maximum load
   offered by traffic generator over a set trial duration, regardless of
   packet loss.  Maximum load for specified Ethernet frame size is set
   to the bi-directional link rate (2x 10GbE in referred results).

   Tests were conducted with two traffic profiles: i) continuous stream
   of 64B frames, ii) continuous stream of IMIX sequence of (7x 64B, 4x
   570B, 1x 1518B), all sizes are L2 untagged Ethernet.

   NFV service topologies tested include: VNF service chains, CNF
   service chains and CNF service pipelines.






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8.2.  VNF Service Chain

   VNF Service Chain (VSC) topology is tested with KVM hypervisor
   (Ubuntu 18.04-LTS), with NFV service instances consisting of NFs
   running in VMs (VNFs).  Host data-plane is provided by FD.io VPP
   vswitch.  Virtual interfaces are virtio-vhostuser.  Snake forwarding
   packet path is tested using [TRex] traffic generator, see figure.

   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | | S1VNF1 |  | S1VNF2 |              | S1VNFn |            |
   | |        |  |        |     ....     |        | Service1   |
   | |  XXXX  |  |  XXXX  |              |  XXXX  |            |
   | +-+X--X+-+  +-+X--X+-+              +-+X--X+-+            |
   |   |X  X|      |X  X|                  |X  X|   Virtual    |
   |   |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|   Interfaces |
   | +-+X--X+------+X--X+------+X--X+------+X--X+-+            |
   | |  X  XXXXXXXXXX  XXXXXXXXXX  XXXXXXXXXX  X  |            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X          FD.io VPP vSwitch           X  |            |
   | +-+X-+----------------------------------+-X+-+            |
   |   |X |                                  | X|              |
   +----X--------------------------------------X---------------+
       |X |                                  | X|   Physical
       |X |                                  | X|   Interfaces
   +---+X-+----------------------------------+-X+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                  Traffic Generator (TRex)                 |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

           Figure 6. VNF service chain test setup.

8.3.  CNF Service Chain

   CNF Service Chain (CSC) topology is tested with Docker containers
   (Ubuntu 18.04-LTS), with NFV service instances consisting of NFs
   running in Containers (CNFs).  Host data-plane is provided by FD.io
   VPP vswitch.  Virtual interfaces are memif.  Snake forwarding packet
   path is tested using [TRex] traffic generator, see figure.









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   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | | S1CNF1 |  | S1CNF2 |              | S1CNFn |            |
   | |        |  |        |     ....     |        | Service1   |
   | |  XXXX  |  |  XXXX  |              |  XXXX  |            |
   | +-+X--X+-+  +-+X--X+-+              +-+X--X+-+            |
   |   |X  X|      |X  X|                  |X  X|   Virtual    |
   |   |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|      |X  X|   Interfaces |
   | +-+X--X+------+X--X+------+X--X+------+X--X+-+            |
   | |  X  XXXXXXXXXX  XXXXXXXXXX  XXXXXXXXXX  X  |            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X          FD.io VPP vSwitch           X  |            |
   | +-+X-+----------------------------------+-X+-+            |
   |   |X |                                  | X|              |
   +----X--------------------------------------X---------------+
       |X |                                  | X|   Physical
       |X |                                  | X|   Interfaces
   +---+X-+----------------------------------+-X+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                  Traffic Generator (TRex)                 |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

         Figure 7. CNF service chain test setup.

8.4.  CNF Service Pipeline

   CNF Service Pipeline (CSP) topology is tested with Docker containers
   (Ubuntu 18.04-LTS), with NFV service instances consisting of NFs
   running in Containers (CNFs).  Host data-plane is provided by FD.io
   VPP vswitch.  Virtual interfaces are memif.  Pipeline forwarding
   packet path is tested using [TRex] traffic generator, see figure.

















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   +-----------------------------------------------------------+
   |                     Host Compute Node                     |
   |                                                           |
   | +--------+  +--------+              +--------+            |
   | |  S1NF1 |  |  S1NF2 |              |  S1NFn |            |
   | |        +--+        +--+  ....  +--+        | Service1   |
   | |  XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX    XXXXXXXXXXXX  |            |
   | +--X-----+  +--------+              +-----X--+            |
   |   |X                                      X|   Virtual    |
   |   |X                                      X|   Interfaces |
   | +-+X--------------------------------------X+-+            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X                                      X  |            |
   | |  X          FD.io VPP vSwitch           X  |            |
   | +-+X-+----------------------------------+-X+-+            |
   |   |X |                                  | X|              |
   +----X--------------------------------------X---------------+
       |X |                                  | X|   Physical
       |X |                                  | X|   Interfaces
   +---+X-+----------------------------------+-X+--------------+
   |                                                           |
   |                  Traffic Generator (TRex)                 |
   |                                                           |
   +-----------------------------------------------------------+

             Figure 8. CNF service chain test setup.

8.5.  Sample Results: FD.io CSIT

   FD.io CSIT project introduced NFV density benchmarking in release
   CSIT-1901 and published results for the following NFV service
   topologies and configurations:

   1.  VNF Service Chains

       *  VNF: DPDK-L3FWD v18.10

          +  IPv4 forwarding

          +  NF-1c

       *  vSwitch: VPP v19.01-release

          +  L2 MAC switching

          +  vSwitch-1c, vSwitch-2c

       *  frame sizes: 64B, IMIX



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   2.  CNF Service Chains

       *  CNF: VPP v19.01-release

          +  IPv4 routing

          +  NF-1c

       *  vSwitch: VPP v19.01-release

          +  L2 MAC switching

          +  vSwitch-1c, vSwitch-2c

       *  frame sizes: 64B, IMIX

   3.  CNF Service Pipelines

       *  CNF: VPP v19.01-release

          +  IPv4 routing

          +  NF-1c

       *  vSwitch: VPP v19.01-release

          +  L2 MAC switching

          +  vSwitch-1c, vSwitch-2c

       *  frame sizes: 64B, IMIX

   More information is available in FD.io CSIT-1901 report, with
   specific references listed below:

   o  Testbed: [CSIT-1901-testbed-2n-skx]

   o  Test environment: [CSIT-1901-test-enviroment]

   o  Methodology: [CSIT-1901-nfv-density-methodology]

   o  Results: [CSIT-1901-nfv-density-results]

8.6.  Sample Results: CNCF/CNFs

   CNCF CI team introduced a CNF testbed initiative focusing on
   benchmaring NFV density with open-source network applications running




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   as VNFs and CNFs.  Following NFV service topologies and
   configurations have been tested to date:

   1.  VNF Service Chains

       *  VNF: VPP v18.10-release

          +  IPv4 routing

          +  NF-1c

       *  vSwitch: VPP v18.10-release

          +  L2 MAC switching

          +  vSwitch-1c, vSwitch-2c

       *  frame sizes: 64B, IMIX

   2.  CNF Service Chains

       *  CNF: VPP v18.10-release

          +  IPv4 routing

          +  NF-1c

       *  vSwitch: VPP v18.10-release

          +  L2 MAC switching

          +  vSwitch-1c, vSwitch-2c

       *  frame sizes: 64B, IMIX

   3.  CNF Service Pipelines

       *  CNF: VPP v18.10-release

          +  IPv4 routing

          +  NF-1c

       *  vSwitch: VPP v18.10-release

          +  L2 MAC switching

          +  vSwitch-1c, vSwitch-2c



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       *  frame sizes: 64B, IMIX

   More information is available in CNCF CNF Testbed github, with
   summary test results presented in summary markdown file, references
   listed below:

   o  Results: [CNCF-CNF-Testbed-Results]

9.  IANA Considerations

   No requests of IANA

10.  Security Considerations

   ..

11.  Acknowledgements

   Thanks to Vratko Polak of FD.io CSIT project and Michael Pedersen of
   the CNCF Testbed initiative for their contributions and useful
   suggestions.

12.  References

12.1.  Normative References

   [RFC2544]  Bradner, S. and J. McQuaid, "Benchmarking Methodology for
              Network Interconnect Devices", RFC 2544,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2544, March 1999,
              <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc2544>.

   [RFC8174]  Leiba, B., "Ambiguity of Uppercase vs Lowercase in RFC
              2119 Key Words", BCP 14, RFC 8174, DOI 10.17487/RFC8174,
              May 2017, <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc8174>.

12.2.  Informative References

   [BSDP]     "Benchmarking Software Data Planes Intel(R) Xeon(R)
              Skylake vs. Broadwell", March 2019, <https://fd.io/wp-
              content/uploads/sites/34/2019/03/
              benchmarking_sw_data_planes_skx_bdx_mar07_2019.pdf>.

   [CNCF-CNF-Testbed]
              "Cloud native Network Function (CNF) Testbed", March 2019,
              <https://github.com/cncf/cnf-testbed/>.






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   [CNCF-CNF-Testbed-Results]
              "CNCF CNF Testbed: NFV Service Density Benchmarking",
              December 2018, <https://github.com/cncf/cnf-
              testbed/blob/master/comparison/doc/
              cncf-cnfs-results-summary.md>.

   [CSIT-1901-nfv-density-methodology]
              "FD.io CSIT Test Methodology: NFV Service Density", March
              2019,
              <https://docs.fd.io/csit/rls1901/report/introduction/
              methodology_nfv_service_density.html>.

   [CSIT-1901-nfv-density-results]
              "FD.io CSIT Test Results: NFV Service Density", March
              2019, <https://docs.fd.io/csit/rls1901/report/vpp_performa
              nce_tests/nf_service_density/index.html>.

   [CSIT-1901-test-enviroment]
              "FD.io CSIT Test Environment", March 2019,
              <https://docs.fd.io/csit/rls1901/report/
              vpp_performance_tests/test_environment.html>.

   [CSIT-1901-testbed-2n-skx]
              "FD.io CSIT Test Bed", March 2019,
              <https://docs.fd.io/csit/rls1901/report/introduction/
              physical_testbeds.html#node-xeon-skylake-2n-skx>.

   [draft-vpolak-bmwg-plrsearch]
              "Probabilistic Loss Ratio Search for Packet Throughput
              (PLRsearch)", November 2018, <https://tools.ietf.org/html/
              draft-vpolak-bmwg-plrsearch-00>.

   [draft-vpolak-mkonstan-bmwg-mlrsearch]
              "Multiple Loss Ratio Search for Packet Throughput
              (MLRsearch)", November 2018, <https://tools.ietf.org/html/
              draft-vpolak-mkonstan-bmwg-mlrsearch-00>.

   [LFN-FDio-CSIT]
              "Fast Data io, Continuous System Integration and Testing
              Project", March 2019, <https://wiki.fd.io/view/CSIT>.

   [RFC8204]  Tahhan, M., O'Mahony, B., and A. Morton, "Benchmarking
              Virtual Switches in the Open Platform for NFV (OPNFV)",
              RFC 8204, DOI 10.17487/RFC8204, September 2017,
              <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc8204>.






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   [TRex]     "TRex Low-Cost, High-Speed Stateful Traffic Generator",
              March 2019, <https://github.com/cisco-system-traffic-
              generator/trex-core>.

   [TST009]   "ETSI GS NFV-TST 009 V3.1.1 (2018-10), Network Functions
              Virtualisation (NFV) Release 3; Testing; Specification of
              Networking Benchmarks and Measurement Methods for NFVI",
              October 2018, <https://www.etsi.org/deliver/etsi_gs/NFV-
              TST/001_099/009/03.01.01_60/gs_NFV-TST009v030101p.pdf>.

Authors' Addresses

   Maciek Konstantynowicz (editor)
   Cisco Systems

   Email: mkonstan@cisco.com


   Peter Mikus (editor)
   Cisco Systems

   Email: pmikus@cisco.com





























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