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A method to virtualize the IP Multimedia Systems Disclosure Number: IPCOM000248361D
Publication Date: 2016-Nov-18

Publishing Venue

The Prior Art Database


This article discusses a novel system of "virtualizing" the entire IP Multimedia switching fabric for the VIMS (Virtualized IP Multimedia System). More specifically this system requires the virtualization of all the switching elements of the IP Multimedia Systems (IMS), and the also virtualizing the networking aspects using Network Function Virtualization (NFV). Additionally this article includes the methodology to ensure at least 5 9's availability for the VIMS using server & OS clustering, stretched VLAN & IP and also database mirroring and replicatio across datacenters.

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A method to virtualize the IP Multimedia Systems

Disclosed is an innovative system of virtualizing the IP Multimedia Systems(IMS), defined by 3GPP. This Virtualized IP Multimedia Systems (VIMS) requires the virtualization of the switching elements namely the CSCFs (Call Session Control Function), HSS (Home Subscrber Server) and AS (Application Server). In the VIMS. the networking aspects are also virtualized, using Network Function Virtualization (NFV). This is performed to take advantage of the all IP framework of the IP Multimedia System. Hence in the Virtualized IMS all the CSCFs (Proxy CSCF, Serving CSCF, Interrogatory CSCF and Breakout CSCF) are hosted in a public or hosted

private cloud as virtual machines (VMs) The HSS (Home Server Systems) and AS'es (Application Servers) can be deployed over a private cloud for security reasons. The above network elements either use SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) for call setup, maintenance and release) and SDP (Session Description Protocol) over IP or DIAMETER over IP. The CSCF instances will be behind load balancers and autoscalers to handle surges and drops in voice, video and data traffic.

Hence these switching elements can be deployed as VM (virtual machines) instances on the cloud. IP Multimedia Systems (IMS) is the architectural framework proposed by 3GPP to establish and maintain multimedia sessions using an all IP network. IMS is a grand vision that is access network agnostic, uses an all IP backbone to begin, manage and release multimedia sessions. This is done through network elements called Call Session Control Function (CSCFs), Home Subscriber Systems (HSS) and Application Servers (AS). The CSCFs use SDP over SIP

protocol to communicate with other CSCFs and the Application Servers (AS'es). The CSCFs also use DIAMETER to talk to the Home Subscriber System (HSS'es).

Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) is used for signaling between the CSCFs to begin, control and release multi-media sessions and Session Description Protocol (SDP) is used to describe the type of media voice, video or data). DIAMETER is used by the CSCFs to access the HSS. All these

protocols work over IP. The use of an all IP core network for both signaling and transmitting bearer media makes the IMS a very prospective candidate for the cloud system.

In addition the Network functions will be virtualized using Network Functions Virtualization (NFV). The NFV will fit well into this virtualized architecture and the functions of DNS (Directory Naming Service) , firewall, router and switch functions can be virtualized across the IP Multimedia network. In addition the complementary SDN (Software Defined Networking) will be used to separate the control plane and the data plane. The use of SDN along with the complementary NFV will enable the ability of the (VIMS) Virtualized IP Multimedia System to be able to re-route traffic (voice, data, video) based on network congestion and on routes to handle issues of latency and...