On Monolithic and Microservice deployment of Network Functions

Sachin Sharma, Navdeep Uniyal, Besmir Tola, Yuming Jiang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

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Network Function Virtualization (NFV) has recently attracted telecom operators to migrate network functionalities from expensive bespoke hardware systems to virtualized IT infrastructures where they are deployed as software components. Scalability, up-gradation, fault tolerance and simplified testing are important challenges in the field of NFV. In order to overcome these challenges, there is significant interest from research communities to scale or decompose network functions using the monolithic and microservice approach. In this paper, we compare the performance of both approaches using an analytic model and implementing test-bed experiments. In addition, we calculate the number of instances of monoliths or microservices in which a network function could be scaled or decomposed in order to get the maximum or required performance. Single and multiple CPU core scenarios are considered. Experimentation is performed by using an open source network function, SNORT and running monoliths and microservices of SNORT as Docker containers on bare metal machines. The experimental results compare the performance of monolith and microservice approaches and are used to estimate the validity of the analytic model. The results also show the effectiveness of our approach in finding the number of instances (monoliths or microservices) required to maximize performance.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2019 IEEE Conference on Network Softwarization and Workshops (NetSoft)
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5386-9376-6
Publication statusPublished - 22 Aug 2019


  • Network Functions
  • Performance
  • VNF Monoliths
  • VNF Microservices
  • VNF decomposition

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