A Virtual Network Function Descriptor (VNFD) file describes the instantiation parameters and operational behaviors of the VNFs. You can design SOL001-compliant VNFDs using the Network Function Designer tool in VMware Telco Cloud Automation.


Add a cloud to your virtual infrastructure.


  1. Log in to the VMware Telco Cloud Automation web interface.
  2. From the left navigation pane, go to Catalog > Network Function.
  3. Click Onboard.

    The Onboard Network Function page is displayed.

  4. Select Design Network Function Descriptor.
  5. Name - Enter a unique name for your VNF descriptor.
  6. Tags (Optional)- Enter the tags to associate your VNF descriptor with.
  7. Type - Select the network function type as Virtual Network Function.
  8. Click Design.

    The Network Function Designer page is displayed.

  9. In the General Properties tab, enter the following information:
    • Description (Optional) - A general description about the network function.

    • Version - The version of the network function TOSCA file. This text box is not editable.

    1. Under Network Function Properties, enter information for the following fields:
      • Descriptor ID - The descriptor ID is system generated and not editable.

      • Descriptor Version - Enter the descriptor version.

      • Provider - Enter the company name of the provider.

      • Provider Name - Enter the company name of the vendor.

      • Product Name - Enter the product name of the descriptor.

      • Version - Enter the product version.

      • Software Version - Enter the software version.

    2. Under Available Operations, select the life-cycle management operations to be made available for your VNF. Your users can run only those operations that are enabled here.
      • Heal

      • Scale

      • Scale To Level

      • Workflow

      • Operate

      • Upgrade Package


      The life-cycle management operations are enabled by default.

    3. The Draft Versions pane displays the available versions of the Network Function catalog that you can edit. Click the Options () icon and select the draft that you want to view or edit.
  10. In the Topology tab:
    1. Add internal networks (Virtual Links) to your VNF by dragging the icon from the toolbar into the design area. During Instantiation, VMware Telco Cloud Automation creates networks for these virtual links. You can override them and select the existing networks if necessary.

      You can configure the following settings:

      • Network Name

      • Description

      • CIDR

      • DHCP

      • (Optional) Gateway IP

      • (Optional) IP Allocation Pools

        • Start IP Address

        • End IP Address

      When you finish configuring the settings, click Update.

      To configure additional settings for your network, click the pencil icon against the network.

    2. Add virtual machines (VDU) by dragging the icon from the Toolbar into the design area. In the Configure VDU pane, specify the following settings for each VDU:
      • Name - Name of the VDU.

      • Description - Description about the VDU.

      • Minimum Instances - The minimum number of VDU instances.

      • Image Name - The name of the VM template that is on the backing vCenter Server of your cloud.

        • The image name you enter must match the virtual machine template name on the vCenter Server.

        • The image must be saved as a VM template.

      • Virtual CPU - Number of virtual CPUs.

      • Virtual Memory - Virtual memory size.

      • Virtual Storage - Virtual storage size.

      • Advanced Properties (Optional) - Enable Enhanced Platform Awareness (EPA) capabilities such as CPU Pinning and Huge Page, and select the associated NUMA Node ID. These properties are then automatically updated on the NFD.yaml file.


        This option is applicable when you configure VMware Integrated OpenStack as your VIM.

      • OVF Properties (Optional) - OVF properties are the OVF inputs to provide to the VM template. Enter the property, description, type such as string, boolean, or number, and default value. To make this information mandatory, select the Required option.

      • Connection Points - Select an internal or external connection point from the Add Connection Point drop-down menu:

        • Internal Connection Point - Links the VDU to an existing virtual link that is added to the VNF. At least one virtual link is required for internal connection points.

        • External Connection Point - A placeholder for an external virtual link that is required during instantiation. You must provide a Connection Name that matches the external virtual link name.

      • Depends On (Optional) - Specify the VDUs to be deployed before deploying this VDU. In a scenario where you deploy many VDUs, there can be dependencies between VDUs regarding the order in which they are deployed. This option enables you to specify their deployment order.


      To enable the Depends On option, you must configure more than one VDU.


      You must add at least one virtual link before configuring the internal connection points for your VDUs.

      You can modify VDU settings at a later stage by clicking the pencil icon on the desired VDU.

  11. In the Rules tab, add an affinity or anti-affinity rule. For more information, see Working with Affinity Rules.
  12. In the Scaling Policies tab, add scaling aspects and instantiation levels. For more information, see Scaling Policies.
  13. To design workflows, see
  14. To save your descriptor as a draft and work on it later, click Save Draft. For information about working with different draft versions, see Edit Network Function Descriptor Drafts.
  15. After designing your network function descriptor, click Onboard Package.


The specified network function is added to the catalog. You can now instantiate the function or use it to create a network service.

What to do next

  • To instantiate the network function, see Instantiate a Virtual Network Function.

  • To create a network service that includes the network function, see Design a Network Service Descriptor.

  • To obtain the CSAR file corresponding to a network function, select the function in the catalog and click Download.

  • To add or remove tags, go to Catalog > Network Function and click the desired network function. Then click Edit.

  • To remove a network function from the catalog, stop and delete all instances using the network function. Then select the function in the catalog and click Delete.