Originally posted on VMware Blogs by Diego Lozano de Fournas, Karina Dahlke and Jason James

VMware commissioned EANTC to compare the performance and capabilities of VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN with a bare-metal  platform. EANTC is an independent, internationally recognized center that provides objective, vendor-neutral network performance testing in its virtualized open RAN lab.  

EANTC’s extensive testing of VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN and a rival platform compared the installation, functionality, and performance of the two solutions for disaggregated radio access networks.  

VMware Performance Is on Par with Bare Metal for RAN Workloads 

Here is the bottom line:  

  • The independent testing proves that VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN performs on par with a bare-metal solution.  
  • There was no performance overhead associated with the VMware hypervisor that is included with VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN.  
  • By running the Cyclic and OSLat tests, EANTC confirmed that both the VMware platform and the bare-metal platform passed O-RAN latency requirements for a real-time operating system.

Better than Bare Metal for Automation, Ease, and Simplicity  

EANTC’s independent testing found that VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN excelled not only in reliable, low-latency performance but also in user-friendly operations. The test results highlight how VMware simplifies the user experience and automates costly processes.  

“The architectural approach of VMware … provided identical performance compared to a bare-metal Kubernetes cluster, and much better provisioning and operations support,” the independent test report from EANTC says. 

The other platform requires deep technical expertise and lacks built-in checks. The command-line operations of the other platform increase the risk of manual errors.  

In contrast, the automation and built-in checks of VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN safeguard operations and distinguish it from the other system.  

Strength in Depth through Automated Operations 

Here are the other highlights from EANTC’s testing:   

  • The VMware RAN solution is easier to deploy, operate, and maintain than the bare-metal solution.
  • The VMware RAN solution simplifies the deployment and management of virtualized network functions (VNFs) and containerized network functions (CNFs).
  • The provisioning and management operations of VMware Telco Cloud Automation — the orchestration framework included with VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN — were straightforward and well abstracted on the cluster, making it easy and efficient to execute first-time and daily tasks.
  • To maximize the use of resources and the return on investment for infrastructure for non-RAN workloads, such as near edge applications, you can achieve a much higher pod density with the VMware platform than with the other platform.
  • A noisy neighbor did not have an adverse effect on a latency-sensitive workload.
  • The VMware platform delivered excellent memory optimization through its Transparent Memory Sharing (TPS) technology.
  • The EANTC report demonstrates the advantages of automatically allocating resources during node customization. Because the VMware ESXi hypervisor virtualizes the underlying server resources, VMware Telco Cloud Platform RAN can dynamically allocate resources during CNF instantiation and ensure the right node customization at instantiation time, regardless of the type of CNF or the CNF’s vendor.

The Power of Performance and Automation 

The independent testing performed by EANTC in its virtualized open RAN lab proves that the performance of the VMware hypervisor matches bare metal and that the VMware RAN platform is easier to set up, operate, and maintain. 

For more information, see the EANTC Independent Test Report.