Test and validation company Spirent announced that China Unicom, Wind River, HP, and Huawei have selected Spirent’s technology to test what specific requirements network functions virtualization (NFV) has on virtualization middleware.
Middleware is software that runs between general-purpose hardware equipment and applications and provides virtualized functions for physical hardware, according to Spirent’s and China Unicom’s jointly written white papers produced from these tests. It is then used to pool computing, storage, and network communication resources of physical hardware, and deliver them to applications as virtual machines and virtual network functions (VNFs).
“The industry needs a way to understand the predictability of NFV infrastructure, the VNF lifecycle management, and MANO before they hit the market,” says Malathi Malla, product lead for Cloud and IT solutions at Spirent.
Spirent, and the companies whose products it’s testing, is not necessarily concerned about whether the tests results are positive or negative, says Malla. The only concern is what features need to be improved or changed.
These particular tests were focused on the functions, basic performance, and network performance of virtualized middleware.
The basic performance tests focused on CPU testing, memory testing, storage testing, and virtual machine interference testing. Spirent’s CloudStress software was used for this portion of the testing. CloudStress is a workload generator that enables network equipment manufacturers, cloud providers, and service providers to scale test lab operations when testing hybrid virtual network functions.
The network performance tests were completed on Spirent’s TestCenter. This hardware was used to evaluate the performance of virtual switching (vSwitch) technology. TestCenter is a physical testing tool designed for network performance tests for vSwitches and network interface cards (NICs) in pass-through and single root input/output (SR-IOV) modes.
Companies like Tech Mahindra, Satimo, DG Technologies, and Aricent have used Spirent’s test gear to validate their technologies.