Chapter 32. CNF certification and Vendor Validation

32.1. Working with Cloud-native Network Function (CNF) certification

32.1.1. Introduction to Cloud-native Network Function

Cloud-native Network Functions (CNFs) are containerized instances of classic physical or Virtual Network Functions (VNFs) that have been decomposed into microservices supporting elasticity, lifecycle management, security, logging, and other capabilities in a Cloud-native format.

The CNF badge is a specialization within Red Hat OpenShift certification. It is available for products that implement a network function delivered in a container format with Red Hat OpenShift as the deployment platform. Red Hat offers two levels of CNF certification:

  • Vendor Validation - Select this type of CNF certification, if your container base image is neither RHEL nor UBI. For this type of certification, Vendor Validate your CNF product by testing it internally, before publishing it as a Vendor Validated CNF product on the Red Hat Ecosystem catalog.
  • Certified CNF - Select this type of CNF certification, if your container base image is RHEL or UBI. For this type of certification, Vendor Validate your CNF product, run the certification tests on your workload and then submit it for verification. After successful verification your CNF product gets listed as a Certified CNF product on the Red Hat Ecosystem catalog.

Products that meet the requirements and complete the certification workflow get listed on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog and are identified with the CNF badge. Partners will receive a logo to promote their product certification.

Additional resources

32.1.2. Certification workflow for CNF

Note

Red Hat recommends that you are a Red Hat Certified Engineer or hold equivalent experience before starting the certification process.

Task Summary

The certification workflow includes the following three primary stages-

32.1.2.1. Certification onboarding for cnf

Perform the steps outlined for the certification onboarding:

  1. Join the Red Hat Connect for Technology Partner Program.
  2. Agree to the program terms and conditions.
  3. Create your product listing by selecting your desired product category. You can select from the available product categories:

    1. Containerized Application
    2. Standalone Application
    3. OpenStack Infrastructure
  4. Complete your company profile.
Note

Create individual CNF components for each partner product version and its corresponding Red Hat base version. If you want to certify your CNF component then create separate CNF components for each attached CNF component such as container images and operator bundle or Helm chart.

Additional resources

For detailed instructions about creating your CNF product, see Creating a product listing.

32.1.2.2. Completing the product listing for cnf

Perform the steps outlined for completing the checklist:

  1. Provide details for your validation.
  2. Validate the functionality of your CNF on Red Hat OpenShift for Vendor Validation.
  3. Complete the product listing details for certifying your CNF components.
  4. Add components to the product listing.
  5. Certify components for your product listing.

Additional resources

For more details about completing the product listing, see Adding certification components.

32.1.2.3. Publishing the product listing on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog

The Certified or Vendor Validated CNF component must be added to your product’s Product Listing page on the Red Hat Partner Connect portal. Once published, your product listing is displayed on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog, by using the product information that you provide. You can publish both the Vendor Validated and Certified CNF products on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog with the respective labels.

Additional resources

32.2. Create a product

The product listing provides marketing and technical information, showcasing your product’s features and advantages to potential customers. It lays the foundation for adding all necessary components to your product for certification.

Prerequisites

Ensure that your product meets the following requirements before proceeding with the certification process:

  • Your product is generally available for public access
  • Your product is tested and deployed on Red Hat OpenShift
  • Your product is commercially supported on Red Hat OpenShift

Verify the functionality of your product on the target Red Hat platform, in addition to the specific certification testing requirements. If running your product on the targeted Red Hat platform results in a substandard experience then you must resolve the issues before certification.

Procedure

Red Hat recommends completing all optional fields in the listing tabs for a comprehensive product listing. More information helps mutual customers make informed choices.

Red Hat encourages collaboration with your product manager, marketing representative, or other product experts when entering information for your product listing.

Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are mandatory.

Procedure

  1. Log in to the Red Hat Partner Connect Portal.
  2. Go to the Certified technology portal tab and click Visit the portal.
  3. On the header bar, click Product management.
  4. From the Listing and certification tab click Manage products.
  5. From the My Products page, click Create Product.

    A Create New Product dialog opens.

  6. Enter the Product name.
  7. From the What kind of product would you like to certify? drop-down, select the required product category and click Create product. For example, select Containerized Application for creating a containerized product listing.

    A new page with your Product name opens. It comprises the following tabs:

    Along with the following tabs, the page header provides the Product Score details. Product Score evaluates your product information and displays a score. It can be:

    • Fair
    • Good
    • Excellent
    • Best
  8. Click How do I improve my score? to improve your product score.
  9. After providing the product listing details, click Save before moving to the next section.

32.2.1. Overview for CNF

This tab consists of a series of tasks that you must complete to publish your product:

32.2.1.1. Complete product listing details for CNF

  1. To complete your product listing details, click Start.

    The Product Information tab opens.

  2. Enter all the essential product details and click Save.

32.2.1.2. Complete company profile information for CNF

  1. To complete your company profile information, click Start. After entering all the details, click Submit.
  2. To modify the existing details, click Review. The Account Details page opens.
  3. Review and modify the Company profile information and click Submit.

32.2.1.4. Add at least one product component for CNF

  1. Click Start. You are redirected to the Components tab.

    To add a new or existing product component, click Add component.

  2. For adding a new component,

    1. In the Component Name text box, enter the component name. This name is not published and is only for internal use.

      Note

      Red Hat recommends including the product version in the component name to aid easy identification of the newly created CNF component. For example, <CompanyName ProductName> 1.2 - OCP 4.12.2)

    2. For What kind of OpenShift component are you creating? select the component that you wish to certify. For example, for certifying your CNF, select Cloud Native Function (CNF).
    3. Click Create new component.
  3. For adding an existing component, from the Add Component dialog, select Existing Component.

    1. From the Available components list, search and select the components that you wish to certify and click the forward arrow. The selected components are added to the Chosen components list.
    2. Click Attach existing component.
Note

Create individual CNF components for each partner product version and its corresponding Red Hat base version. Also create and attach certification components such as container images and operator bundle or Helm chart, which are required for the certification. You can create more than one CNF component for a product.

32.2.1.5. Certify components for your listing for CNF

  1. To certify the components for your listing, click Start. If you have existing product components, you can view the list of Attached Components and their details:

    1. Name
    2. Certification
    3. Security
    4. Type
    5. Created
    6. Click more options to archive or remove the components
  2. Select the components for certification.

After completing all the above tasks you will see a green tick mark corresponding to all the options.

The Overview tab also provides the following information:

  1. Product contacts - Provides Product marketing and Technical contact information.

    1. Click Add contacts to product to provide the contact information
    2. Click Edit to update the information.
  2. Components in product - Provides the list of the components attached to the product along with their last updated information.

    1. Click Add components to product to add new or existing components to your product.
    2. Click Edit components to update the existing component information.

After publishing the product listing, you can view your Product Readiness Score and Ways to raise your score on the Overview tab.

32.2.2. Product Information for CNF

Through this tab you can provide all the essential information about your product. The product details are published along with your product on the Red Hat Ecosystem catalog.

General tab:

Provide basic details of the product, including product name and description.

  1. Enter the Product Name.
  2. Optional: Upload the Product Logo according to the defined guidelines.
  3. Enter a Brief description and a Long description.
  4. Click Save.

Features & Benefits tab:

Provide important features of your product.

  1. Optional: Enter the Title and Description.
  2. Optional: To add additional features for your product, click + Add new feature.
  3. Click Save.

Quick start & Config tab:

Add links to any quick start guide or configuration document to help customers deploy and start using your product.

  1. Optional: Enter Quick start & configuration instructions.
  2. Click Save.
  3. Select Hide default instructions check box, if you don’t want to display them.

Linked resources tab:

Add links to supporting documentation to help our customers use your product. The information is mapped to and is displayed in the Documentation section on the product’s catalog page.

Note

It is mandatory to add a minimum of three resources. Red Hat encourages you to add more resources, if available.

  1. Select the Type drop-down menu, and enter the Title and Description of the resource.
  2. Enter the Resource URL.
  3. Optional: To add additional resources for your product, click + Add new Resource.
  4. Click Save.

FAQs tab:

Add frequently asked questions and answers of the product’s purpose, operation, installation, or other attribute details. You can include common customer queries about your product and services.

  1. Enter Question and Answer.
  2. Optional: To add additional FAQs for your product, click + Add new FAQ.
  3. Click Save.

Support tab:

This tab lets you provide contact information of your Support team.

  1. Enter the Support description, Support web site, Support phone number, and Support email address.
  2. Click Save.

Contacts tab:

Provide contact information of your marketing and technical team.

  1. Enter the Marketing contact email address and Technical contact email address.
  2. Optional: To add additional contacts, click + Add another.
  3. Click Save.

Legal tab:

Provide the product related license and policy information.

  1. Enter the License Agreement URL for the product and Privacy Policy URL.
  2. Click Save.

SEO tab:

Use this tab to improve the discoverability of your product for our mutual customers, enhancing visibility both within the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog search and on internet search engines. Providing a higher number of search aliases (key and value pairs) will increase the discoverability of your product.

  1. Select the Product Category.
  2. Enter the Key and Value to set up Search aliases.
  3. Click Save.
  4. Optional: To add additional key-value pair, click + Add new key-value pair.
Note

Add at least one Search alias for your product. Red Hat encourages you to add more aliases, if available.

32.2.3. Components for CNF

Use this tab to add components to your product listing. Through this tab you can also view a list of attached components linked to your Product Listing.

Alternatively, to attach a component to the Product Listing, you can complete the Add at least one product component option available in the Overview tab of a Container, Operator, or Helm Chart product listing.

  1. To add a new or existing product component, click Add component.
  2. For adding a new component,

    1. In the Component Name text box, enter the component name.
    2. In the Component Name text box, enter the component name. This name is not published and is only for internal use.

      Note

      Red Hat recommends including the product version in the component name to aid easy identification of the newly created CNF component. For example, <CompanyName ProductName> 1.2 - OCP 4.12.2)

    3. For What kind of OpenShift component are you creating? select the component that you wish to certify. For example, for certifying your CNF, select Cloud Native Function (CNF).
    4. Click Create new component.
  3. For adding an existing component, from the Add Component dialog, select Existing Component.

    1. From the Available components list, search and select the components that you wish to certify and click the forward arrow. The selected components are added to the Chosen components list.
    2. Click Attach existing component.
Note

You can add one component to multiple products listings. All attached components must be published before the product listing can be published.

After attaching components, you can view the list of Attached Components and their details:

  1. Name
  2. Certification
  3. Security
  4. Type
  5. Created
  6. Click more options to archive or remove the attached components

Alternatively, to search for specific components, type the component’s name in the Search by component Name text box.

32.2.3.1. Certify components for your listing

  1. To certify the components for your listing, click Start. If you have existing product components, you can view the list of Attached Components and their details:

    1. Name
    2. Certification
    3. Security
    4. Type
    5. Created
    6. Click more options to archive or remove the components
  2. Select the components for certification.

32.2.4. Support for CNF

The Red Hat Partner Acceleration Desk (PAD) is a Products and Technologies level partner help desk service that allows the current and prospective partners a central location to ask non-technical questions pertaining to Red Hat offerings, partner programs, product certification, engagement process, and so on.

You can also contact the Red Hat Partner Acceleration Desk for any technical questions you may have regarding the Certification. Technical help requests will be redirected to the Certification Operations team.

Through the Partner Subscriptions program, Red Hat offers free, not-for-resale software subscriptions that you can use to validate your product on the target Red Hat platform. To request access to the program, follow the instructions on the Partner Subscriptions site.

  1. To request support, click Open a support case. See PAD - How to open & manage PAD cases, to open a PAD ticket.
  2. To view the list of existing support cases, click View support cases.

32.2.5. Removing a product

After creating a product listing if you wish to remove it, go to the Overview tab and click Delete.

A published product must first be unpublished before it can be deleted. Red Hat retains information related to deleted products even after you delete the product.

32.3. Adding certification components

After creating the new product listing, add the certification components for the newly created product listing.

You can configure the following options for the newly added components:

Note

The component configurations differ for different product categories.

32.3.1. Certification for CNF

Validate and certify the functionality of your CNF on Red Hat OpenShift by using the Certification tab.

32.3.1.1. Validate the functionality of your CNF on Red Hat OpenShift

By using this feature the Red Hat CNF certification team checks if your product meets all the standards for Vendor Validation.

To validate the functionality of your CNF component, perform the following:

  1. Select this option and click Start questionnaire. The CNF Questionnaire page displays.
  2. Enter all your product and company information.
  3. After filling in all the details, click Submit.
  4. To modify the existing details, click Review. The CNF Questionnaire page displays, allowing you to review and modify the entered information.

After you click Submit, a new functional certification request is created. The Red Hat CNF certification team will review and validate the entered details of the CNF questionnaire. After successful review and validation, your functional certification request will be approved, and the Certification Level field in the Product listing will be set to Vendor Validated.

After completing each step, a green check mark will appear beside each tile to indicate that particular configuration item is complete. When all items are completed in the checklist, the disclosure caret to the left of Pre-publication Checklist will be closed.

Additional resources

For detailed information about the validation process, see CNF workflow.

32.3.1.2. Certify the functionality of your CNF on Red Hat OpenShift

Note

Select this option only if you want to certify your vendor validated CNF component.

This is an optional feature that allows you to certify your Vendor Validated component by using the Red Hat certification tool. For every Vendor Validated component, a new functional certification request will be created on the Red Hat Partner Certification portal. When you place a request for certification, your functional certification request will be processed by the CNF team for certification.

If you certify your Vendor Validated CNF component then it will be displayed on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog with the Certified label.

Prerequisites

  1. Complete the product listing before proceeding with the certification.
  2. Certify your attached container images, operator bundles or helm charts before submitting your CNF component for certification.

Procedure

To certify your Vendor Validated CNF component, perform the following steps:

  1. Go to the Certification tab and from the Certify the functionality of your CNF on Red Hat OpenShift tile, click Start. A new functional certification request is created and will be redirected to your component on the Red Hat Partner Certification (rhcert) portal.
  2. Run the Red Hat Best Practices Test Suite for Kubernetes or use DCI OpenShift App Agent. It consists of a series of test cases derived from best practices to evaluate whether your product adheres to these principles and satisfies the Red Hat certification standards.
  3. To certify your CNF component, perform the following steps on your CNF component page on the Red Hat Partner Certification (rhcert) portal:

    1. Go to the Summary tab,

      1. To submit your product certification test results, from the Files section click Upload. Select the claims.json and tnf_config.yml files. Then, click Next. You can see a successful upload message.
      2. Add your queries related to certification, if any, in the Discussions text box.
      3. Click Add Comment. By using this option, you can communicate your questions to the Red Hat CNF certification team. The Red Hat CNF certification team will provide clarifications for your queries.
    2. In the Summary tab,

      1. Navigate to the Partner Product category.
      2. Click the edit icon below the Partner Product Version option to enter your product version and then click the checkmark button. Your product version gets updated.
    3. Navigate to the Properties tab,

      1. Click the Platform list menu to select the platform on which you want to certify your CNF component. For example - x86_64
      2. Click the Product Version list menu to select the Red Hat product version on which you want to certify your CNF component. For example - Red Hat OpenShift Platform
      3. Click Update Values. The selected values are updated.
Note

All the versions of partner products are not certified for use with every version of Red Hat products. You need to certify each version of your product with the selected Red Hat base version. For example, if you certify your product version 5.11 with Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform version 4.13, you can use only the 5.11 version and not the later versions. Therefore certify every version of your product individually with the latest version of the Red Hat base product.

The Red Hat CNF certification team will review and verify the details of your CNF component. When the Red Hat CNF certification team identifies issues or violations in the recommended best practices with your CNF, joint discussions will ensue to find the remediation options and timeline. The team also considers temporary exceptions if there is a commitment to fix the issues with an identified release target or timeline. All exceptions will be documented and published in a KIE base article listing all non compliant items before CNF gets listed on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog but the technical details will remain private.

Note

All the containers, operators or Helm charts referenced in your CNF product must be recertified before beginning to certify a CNF component in the prescribed order.

After successful verification by the Red Hat CNF certification team, your Vendor Validated CNF component will become certified, and will be automatically published on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog with the Certified label.

Additional resources

  1. For more information about the Red Hat Best Practices Test Suite for Kubernetes, see Overview and test catalog.
  2. For more information about installing and configuring DCI OpenShift App Agent, see DCI OpenShift App Agent.

32.3.2. Component details for CNF

Configure the product component details by using this tab.

Enter the required details in the following fields:

  • Project name - Enter the project name. This name is not published and is only for internal use.
Note

Red Hat recommends including the product version to the component name to aid easy identification of the newly created CNF component. For example, <CompanyName ProductName> 1.2 - OCP 4.12.2)

  • Click Save.

32.3.3. Contact Information for CNF

Note

Providing information for this tab is optional.

In the Contact Information tab, enter the primary technical contact details of your product component.

  1. Optional: In the Technical contact email address field, enter the email address of the image maintainer.
  2. Optional: To add additional contacts for your component, click + Add new contact.
  3. Click Save.

32.3.4. Associated products for CNF

The Associated Product tab provides the list of products that are associated with your product component along with the following information:

  • Product Name
  • Type - Traditional application
  • Visibility - Published or Not Published
  • Last Activity - number of days before you ran the test

To add products to your component, perform the following:

  • If you want to find a product by its name, enter the product name in the Search by name text box and click the search icon.
  • If you are not sure of the product name, click Find a product. From the Add product dialog, select the required product from the Available products list box and click the forward arrow. The selected product is added to the Chosen products list box. Click Update attached products. Added products are listed in the Associated product list.
Note

All the fields marked with an asterisk * are required and must be completed before you can proceed with the certification.

32.4. Publishing the product listing on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog

When you submit your CNF component for validation, the Red Hat CNF certification team will review and verify the entered details of the CNF Questionnaire. If you want to certify your Vendor Validated CNF component, complete the Certification details.

The Red Hat certification team will review the submitted test results. After successful verification, to publish your product on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog, go to the Product Listings page to attach the Vendor Validated or Certified CNF component.

Follow these steps to publish your product listing:

  1. Access the Red Hat Partner connect web page. My Product web page displays the Product Listings.
  2. Navigate to the Product Listings tab and search for the required product listing.
  3. Click the newly created product listing that you want to publish. Review all the details of your product listing.
  4. Go to the Components tab.
  5. Click Add Component to add new component to your product listing.

    Note

    You must publish all the attached components before publishing your product version and product certification.

  6. Click Attach Component to attach your Vendor Validated or Certified CNF component to this listing. While attaching a certified CNF component, it is mandatory to add the certified container image and an operator bundle or Helm chart used by your CNF component.

    Note

    All the attached components must be in Published status.

    For Vendor Validated components, this step is not required. The Publish button is enabled when you specify all the required information for the product listing, including the attached components.

  7. Click Publish.

Your new CNF product listing is now available for public access with respective Vendor Validated or Certified CNF labels on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog. The Certifications table on your product listings page displays the following details:

  • Product - for example, Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform
  • Version - selected Red Hat base product version. for example, 4.12 - 4.x
  • Architecture - for example, x86_64
  • Partner product version - for example, 5.11
  • Certification type - for example, RHOCP 4 CNF
  • Level - for example, Vendor Validated or Certified

You need to certify each version of your product with the selected Red Hat base version. Hence the Certifications table can have multiple versions of your product for the same Red Hat base version. For example,

ProductVersionArchitecturePartner product versionCertification typeCertification level

Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform

4.12

x86_64

5.11

RHOCP 4 CNF

Vendor Validated

Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform

4.12

x86_64

5.12

RHOCP 4 CNF

Certified

Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform

4.12

x86_64

5.13

RHOCP 4 CNF

Certified

Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform

4.12

x86_64

5.14

RHOCP 4 CNF

Vendor Validated

32.5. Recertifying a CNF package

Recertification workflow is similar to the regular CNF certification workflow. Red Hat recommends to recertify your application in the following scenarios:

  • on every major release of the Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform.
  • on every major release of your application.
Note

To recertify your application, it is mandatory to create a new certification request for recertification.

Procedure

  1. Create a new CNF component on the Red Hat Partner Connect.
  2. In the Project name field enter the product name and its version. For example - <CompanyName ProductName> 1.2 - OCP 4.12.2
  3. Complete all the tasks on the overview tab, except the CNF Questionnaire and proceed with the regular CNF certification workflow, like a new certification.
  4. Submit a new certification request through the Red Hat Partner Certification (rhcert) portal.
Note

Recertify the entire CNF package along with recertifying each CNF component individually as a standalone CNF. In case, if you have deployed your CNF application by using a separate helm chart or an operator, you must recertify each CNF separately. Also, if you are recertifying a new version of your CNF product on the same Red Hat product version, you don’t have to recertify the unaltered CNF image containers.

After successful verification by the Red Hat CNF certification team, the new version of your CNF package is recertified, and will be automatically published on the Red Hat Ecosystem Catalog with the Certified label.