WildPackets comes out swinging with a suite on new testing initiatives as part of it’s new OmniAnalysis 5 release.
The testing market seems to be doing very well and it is amazing to see how many new products are being launched in this space and how well companies in this market seem to be doing.
I certainly don’t want to say the market is an easy one to play in but in reality as networks get more complex and real-time applications like voice and video jump on packetized networks, testing becomes essential. Add to this the proliferation of new wired and wireless broadband standards and you have a recipe for rich testing companies.
Now I am not accusing any of the testing companies of being fat and happy because clearly they are innovating. What I am saying is the opportunity seems to be bright in this space.
One company who has launched a major set of new products is WildPackets. I recently caught up with the company’s management team and the briefing was so packed with information I may have set a typing record trying to record it all. WildPackets has rolled out an API for their testing solutions allowing you for example to tie in Google Maps to see where the trouble spots on a network lie. In addition this API allows you to turn routers from companies like Cisco and Aruba Networks into data collection devices.
By the end of June 2007 the company plans on shipping the following products/upgrades:
An 802.11n tester. The company has one now but it is only for use by WiFi Alliance members. Soon, non-members can have one as well.
Virtualized Server Testing
The company has a lightweight application which sits on virtualized servers allowing you to see the data flows on each of these virtual configurations. This is needed to troubleshoot applications virtualized servers effectively. The information is polled into OmniPeek for analysis.
Next Generation Network Forensics
The company has had the ability to capture and store massive amounts of data traffic for some time. This is a crucial ability for network managers for a number of reasons. In case of a network attack you want to be able to trace what happened and when. In addition you may need to trace the movements of certain people in an organization who acted inappropriately.
For example a trader who shared information they shouldn’t have with others. Some companies have purchased a great deal of network forensics equipment which consists of the company’s Omnipliance which of course runs the Omniengine software solution.
There are improvements in the forensics application enabling more data to be stored, a more granular look at packets and the ability to have the packets converted back into instant messages, web pages and e-mails via plug-ins.
Expert VoIP Analysis
WildPackets has also integrated Telchemy’s excellent VQmon VoIP testing technology enabling the company to monitor dropped packets and quality of experience which takes into account MOS scores and R factors.
Application Performance Dashboards
The company is also a founding member of the Apdex alliance, an organization committed to ensuring users have acceptable application performance. Apdex focuses on measuring a single task which could be part of a CRM or ERP system.
Apdex has done research to see at what point people stop working because applications are just too slow. Armed with this information the company is able to rate task speeds on a scale of zero to one with one being optimal.
WildPackets now has a dashboard to monitor such performance which they say is designed for managers as opposed to something only an engineer could love.