PHY-layer network lab automation software uses queuing, test automation -

PHY-layer network lab automation software uses queuing, test automation


Newbury Park, Calif.—Providing a software-controlled lab environment that promises to reduce network equipment, rid labs of rat's nests of cabling, and slash network service testing time, lab management and test automation vendor EdenTree Technologies is rolling out its Lab Manager 5.0 product. Lab Manager 5.0 is a totally re-architected version of the company's predecessor network lab automation software.

This latest spin now runs on Linux, Windows , or UNIX platforms. Because it's integrated with a wide range of switches, Lab Manager 5.0 works in any lab with any devices and any interface types, including POTS /analog (plain old telephone system), T1/E1, DS3/E3 , any rate Ethernet , optical, Fibre Channel , and RF/coaxial cable interfaces.

User Input

Notably, a number of EdenTree users influenced the design of Lab Manager 5.0. Hitachi Data Systems, Cisco Systems , and Verizon , to name a few, worked with EdenTree.

This latest “lab operating system” is now claimed by EdenTree to be significantly more open, scalable, and modular than its predecessor. It also includes features such as event-based scheduling, a Web interface, and integrated power control (more on this below).

Common Front-End

EdenTree's Lab Manager provides a common front-end, making switching transparent. Virtual switch matrices are created from multiple switches.

Moreover, as an open system, Lab Manager 5.0 works with any kind of network equipment, managing PHY (physical layer) infrastructure to which test equipment and DUT s (devices under test) are connected. As an open system, Lab Manager 5.0 includes many drivers, triggers, and an XML interface that permits ready integration with other software and hardware.

It also uses an SQL-compliant database that scales much more easily than its predecessor. And, Lab Manager 5.0 provides API s (application programming interfaces) for Tcl, Perl, Python , others, easing test-script integration.

The result is a software-controlled lab environment with a drag-and-drop GUI (graphical user interface) that lest you remotely design and implement network topologies.

Search And Report

The software includes a scheduler that lets topologies, configurations, and test scripts be scheduled. The new bits also include a search function to find available devices, and a reporting system that tracks device use.

Equipment Sharing

Lab lets you share expensive test equipment among multiple users and multiple test beds. Its queue-based scheduler enhances this capability by letting a test be queued to run at the earliest available time, based on equipment availability. Administrators can adjust priorities or insert a higher-priority project into a queue.

Also new to Lab Manager 5.0 is the aforementioned integration with power controllers. This lets test engineers control power cycling and system re-booting directly from Lab Manager, integrated with the GUI or script control of test topologies. The software supports power controllers from APC, Cyberswitching, MRV Communications, Server Technology , and WTI .

What's more, fore flexible user and group-level access permissions let customers and partners participate in a test process, while permitting the lab to keep control over test beds. Lab Manager 5.0's modular design also lets you add modules for enhanced configuration management or asset management.

Lab Manager 5.0 will be available on an appliance, or as an application for multiple platforms.

Pricing is dependent on switch cost, but it's fair to say that the cost of license-restricted lab Manager 5.0 is about 10-percent to 20-percent of the cost of the switching infrastructure it's applied to. It's priced on a per-port basis, so users can apply it at a low price point, paying more as the numbers of points that are managed increased.

For more details contact EdenTree Technologies, Inc., 810 Lawrence Drive, Suite 210, Newbury Park, Calif. 91320. Phone: 805-499-4555. Fax: 805-499-4450. E-mail:

EdenTree Technologies ,805-499-4555,

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