10Gbps Traffic Test Systems

Stefan Fouant sfouant at shortestpathfirst.net
Thu Jan 21 02:32:11 UTC 2010

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Brad Fleming [mailto:bdfleming at kanren.net]
> Sent: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 5:05 PM
> I am in the market for 10Gbps traffic testers.
> Here are some of the things I'd like to have:
> 1) Mixed packet sizes
> 2) Ramp TCP sessions up/down quickly
> 3) Many source and destination IPs
> 4) Ability to ramp traffic up and down
> 5) Simulate targeted SYN floods
> 6) 10,000+ packets per second
> We'll use these devices to test throughput and resource utilization on
> routers and firewalls/security systems. We'll also test and prove
> candidate QoS configurations (ie: DSCP41 still works well even when
> DSCP11 is saturating links).
> The catch is that I work for a charitable, non-profit with limited
> resources. I understand you can't have steak on a sardine budget; I'm
> just trying to find suggestions on a testing platform for "thrifty"
> customers! We do not have any existing testing systems other than
> iPerf on a Mac Mini.

Testing QoS generally requires highly specialized equipment that can send at
line-rate and has highly accurate timing.  This is necessary to analyze the
impacts of latency and jitter, in addition to testing the impact of
throughput in multi-queue prioritization tests.  Likely this means that the
cheaper options are not sufficient unfortunately, and doubly so because you
want 10Gbps.

I have used Spirent, Ixia, and Agilent boxes with great success, especially
in the area of QoS testing.  Any one of these should be able to perform well
with all of the requirements stated above.  Don't go for the Breakingpoint
box unless you enjoy banging your head against the wall when you can't do
many of the things they claim to be able to do - I was once a proponent of
theirs until I really got under the hood, save yourself the headache and
look at the other alternatives.

Stefan Fouant, CISSP, JNCIE-M/T
GPG Key ID: 0xB5E3803D

More information about the NANOG mailing list