Showing posts with label Spirent. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spirent. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Spirent and MultiLane collaborate on QSFP-DD 800G testing

Spirent Communications has partnered with MultiLane, a global leader in data center interconnects, to offer vendor-neutral testing solutions supporting the 800G ecosystem. 

Specifically, Spirent and MultiLane are working together to resolve QSFP-DD800 testing challenges. 

QSFP-DD800 is one of the first port standards that uses individual electrical 100G lanes. The design, optimization, and fabrication of these 100G lanes presents a significant challenge for host and pluggable developers alike. The partnership facilitates the test and verification of QSFP-DD hardware, including transceivers, switches that use these transceivers, and hyperscaler use cases.


“Successful 100G electrical lane design requires novel techniques and robust test procedures,” said Kees Propstra, Vice President of Marketing at MultiLane. “Our joint effort with Spirent to tackle these challenges facilitates the transition to the 800G node, the next frontier in data center interconnects.”

Spirent offers 800G validation solutions for the entire ecosystem, with support for various speed modes including 1x800G, 2x400G, 4x200G and 8x100G. The company helps its customers qualify equipment so they can determine which supplier will best meet their requirements. For partners, Spirent provides a neutral test solution to validate their vendors.

“Spirent has developed a comprehensive, end-to-end 800G testing suite that leverages our decades of experience in Ethernet testing,” said Aniket Khosla, VP of Product Management, Cloud and IP at Spirent Communications. “Our partnership with MultiLane will assure successful deployments of this complex new technology while helping customers improve product quality and ensure reliable, high-quality user experiences.”

Multilane's 800G test solutions include QSFPDD-800 thermal load loopbacks, module/host compliance boards and noise injection Bit Error Rate Testers (BERTs).

http://www.spirent.com/HSE

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Spirent: 5G trends accelerating

As of mid-year 2021, 5G trends are continuing to accelerate, with 5G SA Core evaluation, testing and launch activities growing significantly across all geographic regions, according to Spirent Communications, which supplies test, assurance, and analytics solutions to mobile operators and network equiment vendors and device suppliers worldwide.

“At the halfway point in 2021, the dominant 5G trends that were present at the start of the year continue to gather pace, with the need for agility and responsiveness enduring,” said Spirent’s Head of Market Strategy, Steve Douglas. “With end-user adoption increasing at a blistering pace, service providers in all major regions are focused on accelerating time to market, improving coverage and optimizing costs. It’s clear that the global 5G race is back on.

Some highlights of the mid-year addendum to the Spirent 5G report: 

Geographic Trends - All major regions (North America, Europe and Asia) are aggressively pursuing 5G Standalone (SA) Core testing and deployments. North America is driving the demand for customer experience and service assurance solutions. Asia Pacific continues its focus on and investment in transport infrastructure, toward the goal of supporting industrial use cases. Europe is starting to accelerate activities after COVID and high-risk vendor delays.

5G Standalone - New services and differentiation are driving 5G Standalone. 5G SA Core evaluation, testing and launch continue to grow significantly across all geographic regions. Large service providers are looking to use multiple vendors while smaller telcos look for one key partner. Key challenges include supporting high release volumes and managing multi-vendor performance.

5G Telco Edge Cloud - Partnerships, early trials and deployments between hyperscalers and service providers are expanding. Providers are still working to benchmark edge performance and integrate assurance for consistent, deterministic latency. Latency looks set to become a key battle ground for the hearts and minds of industry and enterprises.

Open RAN - There are currently 45 ongoing Open RAN trials and early deployments across 27 countries (source: TeckNexus). Leading 5G service providers are targeting larger-scale Open RAN non-dense urban rollouts during 2022. Early deployments will focus on rural, indoor and private coverage. Interoperability, performance, robustness and system integrator overheads require that service providers continue to test and validate every deployment phase.

6G Vision - The industry is beginning to coalesce around some key themes, including THz frequencies, use of intelligent reconfigurable surfaces and metamaterials, open networking and network of networks (terrestrial cellular, NTN, subsea, and Wi-Fi convergence).

Spirent’s “5G 2021: Market Drivers, Insights & Consideration” addendum is available here:

http://www.spirent.com/assets/the-spirent-2021-5g-report

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Spirent and AWS collaborate on automated 5G network testing

Spirent Communications is working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to bring automated 5G testing capabilities to communications service providers (CSPs) building 5G networks on AWS.

The collaboration combines AWS’s Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) pipeline with Spirent’s vendor-neutral 5G test capabilities.


With the introduction of 5G Network Validation on AWS, utilizing Spirent’s Landslide 5GC Automation Package, operators can easily leverage the fully integrated 5G test automation capabilities to rapidly test and validate both deployments and updates of 5G network functions and services. It provides a continuous delivery framework using AWS CodePipeline, together with its security and observability best practices, and is available in all AWS Regions. The solution is fully decoupled and highly scalable, supporting many parallel tests, while allowing several types of network tests which can be automatically triggered as part of the 5G Network application pipeline.

“Service providers around the world are facing a number of distinct challenges as they look to deliver on the promise of 5G,” said Doug Roberts, general manager of Spirent’s Lifecycle Service Assurance business. “The race is on to deploy new 5G technology, but because it is highly complex and new, there is a genuine lack of expertise and resources available to establish and deliver the vital 5G core testing and validation necessary to successfully get these complex networks and services to market.”

“Manually establishing such complex testing requirements is a very time-consuming process, typically running into many months,” says Roberts. “Thanks to our new collaboration with AWS, service providers can leverage Spirent’s 5G expertise and proven test methodologies to easily incorporate automated 5G testing and validation on AWS, reducing months to minutes. They will be able to test with confidence, dramatically accelerate time-to-market, and analysis shows significant cost savings can be achieved compared to traditional manual testing methods.”

http://www.spirent.com/Landslide5GCAP

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Spirent intros subscription-based Automated 5G Core Test Suite

Spirent Communications introduced a subscription-based, automated 5G core test platform designed to accelerate time to market for service providers and significantly reduce costs associated with 5G core validation.

The Spirent Landslide 5GC Automation Package provides access to a managed library of hundreds of prebuilt test cases covering compliance, capacity, and performance testing for nodal, adjacency and end-to-end assessment, including the largest nodal coverage in the industry. It is built around a number of award-winning products and solutions such as Spirent Landslide core emulation, Spirent Velocity test automation, and the company’s world-class professional services.


“This is a true automation pipeline approach for service providers that need to accelerate their 5G deployment while managing tight budgets and resources,” said Doug Roberts, general manager of Spirent’s Lifecycle Service Assurance business. “The value extends well beyond initial deployment, helping validate network changes and, as standards evolve, eliminating the need to resource for ongoing test development.”

“Customers will not only benefit from significant time and cost savings, they can also be confident that they are relying on Spirent’s extensive 5G expertise and proven test methodologies to minimize risk and ensure their 5G rollouts are a success,” added Roberts.

http://www.spirent.com/Landslide5GCAP

Monday, April 19, 2021

Spirent and Innolight test 800G

Spirent Communications has validated an 800G optical transceiver from InnoLight Technology (Suzhou).

The project successfully demonstrated an 800G link up and line rate traffic transmission using IEEE 802.3ck OSFP for VSR application. InnoLight and Spirent engineers worked closely to develop and get the 800G link operational to emulate the traffic of hyperscale datacenters.


“We were delighted to work with Spirent to showcase this latest step towards 800G interoperability,” said Osa Mok, Chief Marketing Officer for InnoLight. “As vendor-agnostic test and measurement leaders, Spirent was able to help us create the environment to continuously test and validate the performance of our 800 Gbps OSFP DR8+ 2km SMP optical transceivers, which are such vital components of the future datacenter and cloud network ecosystem.”

"We are seeing increasing demand from customers for 800G test solutions, and this partnership with InnoLight is a major step forward in proving interoperability and increasing customer confidence in this new technology,” said Abhitesh Kastuar, general manager, Cloud & IP, Spirent Communications. “We are working at the bleeding edge of current high-speed Ethernet technology development to enable our customers to design, develop and eventually deploy 800G technology, and this successful interoperability demonstration will give early adopters the confidence to accelerate design and development of their 800G capable next-gen devices.”

http://www.spirent.com/HSE

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Rakuten Mobile employs Sprirent for 4G/5G testing

Rakuten Mobile is working with Sprirent Communications in support of the operator’s current LTE services, planned 5G Non-Standalone (NSA) and Standalone (SA) rollout in Japan.

Specifically, Rakuten Mobile required testing capabilities to assure the performance of new services and selected Spirent Landslide for core network testing. With LTE services now live and deployment of its 5G NSA network planned for later in the year, Spirent will work with Rakuten Mobile to ensure a solid customer experience.

Rakuten Mobile is also using the Spirent iTest network automation and verification solution for regression testing to speed validation timeframes, allowing Rakuten Mobile’s engineering teams to remain focused on new service creation for subscribers.

“We are excited to collaborate with Spirent for core network testing,” said Tareq Amin, representative director, executive vice president and CTO of Rakuten Mobile. “Given their extensive in-region and global MNO/MVNO experience, advanced methodologies for testing fully-virtualized networks and ability to serve in a consultative role, we are confident that our collaboration will allow us to offer innovative and exciting next generation mobile services to Rakuten Mobile customers.”

“Rakuten Mobile are market trendsetters and Spirent is proud to leverage our depth of experience and advanced testing solutions portfolio to ensure Japan’s newest operator can focus on achieving its vision for offering comprehensive communications services that combine a simple service plan and cutting-edge technologies,” said Spirent’s country manager for Japan, Akihiro Nakamura. “We look forward to working alongside the company as subscribers take advantage of its new services and new deployment targets are set.”

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Spirent on 5G: What to expect in 2020

There is a rush to move past 5G Non-Standalone (NSA) to Standalone (SA) rollouts because it is a quicker path to revenue and profitability for carriers, according to a new report from Spirent Communications.  The “5G: What To Expect In 2020” report draws on the company’s expansive work with operators, network equipment manufacturers and device makers.

“2019 brought worldwide 5G Non-Standalone deployments but meaningful revenues were elusive as operators struggled to break out with market-defining services that could ignite consumer enthusiasm,” said Spirent head of 5G, Steve Douglas. “Spirent’s report goes behind the scenes of our 5G testing engagements to explore what went as planned, where there were stumbles and why the outlook is brightest as stakeholders evolve strategies to capitalize on emerging opportunities, especially in the enterprise.”

Key findings from Spirent’s “5G: What To Expect In 2020” report include:
  • 5G Standalone coming earlier than expected. There is a rush to move past Non-Standalone (NSA) to Standalone (SA) rollouts in an effort to capture revenues in industries like manufacturing, automotive, mobile gaming, manufacturing and beyond. Based on testing timetables, Spirent expects a slate of 5G SA deployments in the first half of 2020. 
  • Smartphone performance challenges extend beyond the device itself. 5G device performance pains stemmed from issues related to the vast number of antennas that must be packed into devices, but also challenges introduced by 5G New Radio, which was not tuned to exploit all capabilities defined within standards. The result sometimes produced performance that looked more like 4G LTE. 
  • Experiences were not optimized to wow consumers. In cases where 5G did deliver anticipated speeds, feature sets and apps were not optimized to take advantage of the speed and bandwidth, meaning consumers couldn’t discern a major experience difference. Spirent expects mobile gaming to be among the earliest consumer use case to capitalize on customized 5G performance boosts. 
  • Assurance now a requirement, not an afterthought. Spirent closed the year having kicked off the first nationwide North American 5G assurance deployment as operators seek to shore up network performance in a bid to deliver the robustness and reliability that will be demanded by enterprise customers.  
  • Some of 5G’s biggest advancements are happening underground. It is ultimately transport networks that will support the data deluge 5G is expected to attract. Significant investment is going toward assuring these networks won’t collapse under heavy demand, with expansive testing efforts underway right now. 


The full report is available online: https://www.spirent.com/assets/rp/rp_5g-what-to-expect-in-2020

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

China Mobile employs Spirent for testing 5G Slicing Packet Network

China Mobile is working with Spirent Communications to assure readiness of mission-critical 5G applications via network slicing transport standard testing and validation.

Spirent's 5G transport and network slicing testing solution provides scalable protocol emulation and L2-L7 traffic generation over the slicing channel layer. Spirent’s solution expands SPN network slicing test capabilities to help ensure the diverse bandwidth, latency, security and time synchronization required by 5G applications.

China Mobile has chosen the newly-launched Spirent FlexE-100 test module to test functional and performance aspects related to 5G transport SPN (Slicing Packet Network). Specifically, Spirent’s FlexE-100 test module will be utilized to test the functional, performance and specification aspects related to 5G transport SPN.

SPN has been accepted by the ITU Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T) for further work towards the G.mtn (Metro Transport Network) standard series, which provides an end-to-end transport network architecture that enables network slicing to meet the most demanding requirements of 5G applications. These standards are essential to successful deployment of ultra-reliable low-latency, high bandwidth, massive, scalable 5G services. Standards-based testing for SPN validates use cases, technologies and solutions prior to deployment, improving interoperability.

Commenting on the next-generation network testing work, Li Han, Vice Director of the Department of Network and IT Technology Research at the China Mobile Research Institute, said: "As operators, network equipment manufacturers and chip suppliers are developing SPN/MTN-enabled products, and exploring and expanding their applications in various scenarios, China Mobile has deployed 5G commercial SPN transport, providing reliable SLA for different 5G applications through multi-layer network slicing. We are pleased that Spirent launched the FlexE-100 test module on its flagship Spirent TestCenter platform and look forward to continuing our cooperation on SPN/MTN testing and use case development, with the goal of driving the commercial deployment of 5G transport network."

http://www.spirent.com/FlexE

Monday, December 16, 2019

China Mobile tests 5G with Spirent

China Mobile is using Spirent’s radio frequency (RF) channel emulation technology to help compare the performance of new 5G chipsets and consumer smartphones from leading global manufacturers.

The new YuHeng system allows operators and device manufacturers to test their RF solutions in the lab with the latest 5G base stations (gNodeB) that employ sophisticated new radio technologies such as massive MIMO beamforming. Devices under test are positioned within an RF anechoic chamber and are driven by a commercial base station, allowing the system to evaluate the performance of the device’s antenna configuration, baseband algorithms, hardware and software design.

Spirent’s Vertex RF Channel Emulator is used to replicate real-world indoor and outdoor effects that can influence radio efficiency, such as multi-path loss, reflections, absorption, delay, doppler frequency shift and antenna polarization. Both downlink and uplink propagation channels are modeled by the system, and multiple types of device-in-motion simulations can be created to replicate real-world scenarios such as walking in an urban environment or traveling in a vehicle on a highway.

“We are delighted to have had the opportunity to collaborate with the China Mobile Group Device Company team on the YuHeng project,” said Peter Tan, Spirent’s VP for Greater China & East Asia. “This innovative solution is the first of its kind and enables China Mobile to thoroughly assess and benchmark the growing number of new 5G smartphones, devices and chipsets for performance in test environments that realistically replicate a wide variety of authentic radio and motion conditions.”

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Spirent signs over 100 deal for 5G related testing in 2019

Spirent Communications closed more than 100 5G-related deals during 2019.

The company says cites accelerated deployment timetables that require complex testing and the need to incorporate assurance into new, next-gen networks for guaranteed quality. Spirent is now engaged in more than 150 global 5G initiatives with a broad mix of operators, device makers, network equipment manufacturers, academic institutions, government and cloud providers.

In addition, Spirent notes that more than half of its 5G business is taking place in the Asia-Pacific region as countries like South Korea gain traction with customized offerings tailored to data-hungry subscribers consuming high-bandwidth content such as AR and VR. In China, the company is supporting nationwide efforts to prepare the transport network and data center architecture for mass market deployments. About one-third of Spirent’s 5G deals are in the Americas, with the remainder across Europe. 5G transport, 5G core and 5G RAN projects comprise the majority of deals as operators pursue a range of network rollout strategies.

“If you took the industry’s pulse early last year, all eyes were on 2020 for mass movement in 5G, but those timetables have been turned on their heads as operators navigate an expanding set of market dynamics that demand speed and scale,” said Spirent Head of 5G Steve Douglas.

www.spirent.com/solutions/5g-network-testing

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Spirent intros 100G and Crypto performance testing

Spirent Communications introduced a C200 appliance for 100G and Crypto performance testing.

The C200, which represents a significant expansion of the Spirent CyberFlood security and application performance testing solution family, is a 1RU appliance providing connectivity at 10G, 25G, 40G, 50G, and 100G. The C200 offers up to 16 x 10G or 4 x 100G ports per appliance. Multiple C200s can be combined to offer 48 x 100G or 192 x 10G ports, delivering more than 3.5Tbps of application layer testing capacity in 12U of rack space.

The C200 with CyberFlood supports NetSecOPEN standards-based testing methodologies, that better reflect how modern security and content inspection solutions will perform under a variety of real-world traffic conditions and threats. In addition, the C200 supports Spirent’s legacy Avalanche solution, which provides extensive client emulation and application services load testing on a massive scale.

https://www.spirent.com/Products/CyberFlood

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Spirent intros NFV test solution

Spirent Communications introduced a test solution for assuring NFV performance as specified in ETSI GS NFV-TST 001.

Spirent CloudSure, which is the first commercially-available standards-based NFV test solution, is designed to benchmark and validate performance and allow service providers to confidently rollout NFV deployments.

Spirent CloudSure offers test packages, consisting of a set of templates that can be easily configured and customized to match service providers’ unique NFV deployments. Configuration is possible via both a graphical user interface (GUI) and an application programming interface (API) for automation users, with Spirent TestCenter Virtual ports and Spirent CloudStress agents generating realistic, multi-dimensional workloads to assess cloud performance.

“Spirent CloudSure takes a new approach to measuring performance of virtualized infrastructure, with a test framework which addresses operators’ key NFV concerns,” said Abhitesh Kastuar, General Manager of Spirent’s Cloud and IP business. “Focused on benchmarking and validating NFV ecosystems in line with ETSI GS NFV-TST 001, Spirent CloudSure is a uniquely flexible and adaptable framework which can also address other cloud testing challenges, such as comparing cloud performance, cloud workload migration, and capacity planning.”

https://www.spirent.com/products/cloudsure

Monday, April 1, 2019

Spirent appoints Eric Updyke as CEO

Spirent Communications named Eric Updyke as its new Chief Executive Officer.

Updyke replaces Eric Hutchinson, who is retiring after 37 years with the Group, including serving as CEO since 2013.

Most recently, Updyke was on the Executive Management team of Amdocs reporting directly to the CEO. In his capacity as Group President, Services at Amdocs Ltd he had global responsibility for the entire Managed Services, Testing and SI businesses. This business encompassed 10,000 employees and roughly $2 billion in revenue. Prior to that role, Eric was Division President for North America at Amdocs where he managed a $1 billion P&L and was responsible for the relationship with North American communications service providers. Prior to his time at Amdocs, he held executive roles at Nokia Siemens Networks and AT&T.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Spirent showcases 400/200/100/50 GigETes Test System

At OFC, Spirent Communications showcased its 8-port 1U-rack-mountable 400/200/100/50 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) test system. The system claims to be the world’s highest density QSFP-DD test solution. It is designed to validate the forwarding performance and Quality of Service (QoS) of high-scale, next-generation-enabled, multi-terabit routers and switches, all contained in a single rack space.

Spirent is also showing the world’s highest-density native QSFP28 quint-speed series of test modules, supporting 100/50/40/25/10GbE from a single interface as part of the joint display, delivering the robust connectivity demanded by emerging markets and applications.

“It’s an exciting time as Ethernet speeds continue to evolve, and customers continue to design and develop solutions to meet future network requirements,” said Abhitesh Kastuar, general manager of Spirent’s Cloud and IP Business Unit. “Our innovation and test capabilities make Spirent the right partner for companies that are racing to bring their leading-edge network technologies to market first. We have been working with all the major network equipment vendors to deliver new chipsets so they can design and develop next-generation 400G products, enabling networking and services vendors to deploy faster and more reliably.”

https://www.spirent.com/HSE

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Spirent intros WLAN 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) test kit

Spirent Communications introduced an WLAN 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) testing solution.

The Spirent TestCenter WLAN 802.11ax testing solution can be employed for functionality, feature, and performance testing of IEEE 802.11ax Access Points (APs) and end-to-end testing of WLAN ecosystems, including WLAN access controllers and gateways. It emulates a large number of realistic WLAN clients through both the in-chassis 2.5G/5G Ethernet and 802.11ax Wi-Fi test ports to easily achieve multi-Gbps throughput. The solution also provides complete Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS) testing coverage through the integration of a radar signal emulation tool, to support both RF cabled conductive testing and Over-The-Air (OTA) testing.

“Users expect Wi-Fi technologies to be ubiquitous. The emergence of these latest enhancements such as Wi-Fi 6 allow network equipment manufacturers, service providers and enterprises to scale up their Wi-Fi access points to carrier-grade and enterprise-grade technology, improving capacity, performance, reliability, and security significantly,” said Spirent’s General Manager of Cloud and IP, Abhitesh Kastuar. “Spirent’s new 802.11ax test solution builds on the market leadership the company established in 802.11ac testing, expanding it to the latest standards in Wi-Fi 6 AP, device, and networking.”

“By leveraging the 802.11ax chipset from Qualcomm Technologies in their test equipment, Spirent empowers the Wi-Fi ecosystem with key testing features to optimize the performance and functionality of their Wi-Fi 6 routers,” said Gopi Sirineni, Vice President, Product Management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “We are pleased to be working alongside Spirent and WLAN Access Point vendors to encourage the adoption of Wi-Fi 6 technology – delivering significant upgrades to the capacity and efficiency of traditional broadband networks to better meet the demands of modern consumers.”

https://www.spirent.com/Products/WLAN-Test-Solutions

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Spirent debuts 400G Ethernet test solution

Spirent Communications introduced an 8-port 1U-high rack-mountable solution for testing 400/200/100/50 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE).

The new pX3 400G Appliance, which is the world’s highest density QSFP-DD tester, is designed to validate the forwarding performance and quality of service of ultra-high-scale, next-generation-enabled, multi-terabit routers and switches, all contained in a single rack space.

The pX3 400G appliance offers 8 ports. Spirent says up to 255 pX3 units can be interconnected to provide synchronized timing for a total of 2,040 ports. These appliances will interoperate with and complement Spirent’s extensive high speed Ethernet test modules and chassis offerings.

“As the demand for more data and higher speeds continues to increase, Spirent is continually developing new solutions for testing 400G capabilities throughout the network,” said Spirent’s General Manager of Cloud and IP, Abhitesh Kastuar. “Spirent’s latest high port density product provides our customers a lower cost of ownership per port than any other provider of test equipment on the market.”

https://www.spirent.com/Products/TestCenter/Platforms/Modules/pX3-400G?utm_source=Press+Release&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=Ethernet&utm_content=Press+Release


Wednesday, July 25, 2018

TLS v1.3: How Do We Get from Here to There?

Spirent has been leading the way in providing companies with the tools they need to prepare for TLS v1.3. I had a chance to sit down with David DeSanto, Director, Products and Threat Research for Spirent to talk about the transition to TLS v1.3 and some of the hurdles that organizations face as they make the switch to the new de facto standard.

Jim Carroll, OND: Tell me about the evolution of TLS. How did we get to this point?

David DeSanto, Spirent: Transport Layer Security, or TLS, is a cryptographic protocol used by many applications and services such as web browsing, email communications, and multimedia communications.  It made Secure Sockets Layer, or SSL, obsolete as it offered better encryption properties such as perfect forward secrecy (PFS), newer cipher suites, etc.

TLS v1.2 is a considered the current de facto standard for cryptography when paired with a strong cipher suite and large private key (i.e., asymmetric key).  However, this comes at an impact to the user’s experience, as the protocol itself and the cipher suites offering elliptic curve with PFS and large asymmetric keys come at a performance hit.  Even in today’s world of data breach roulette, organizations choose to go with a lower encryption standard or cipher suite such that cryptographic steps do not overburden the user and potentially have them stop using their services altogether.
TLS v1.3 looks to address the concerns commonly seen with TLS v1.2.  This new standard includes performance improvements such that the user does not have as much overhead or burden in initializing the secure connection.  It also makes additional insecure cryptographic practices obsolete, which can lead to attackers improperly gaining access to the encrypted communication.

Jim Carroll, OND: What's the current status of TLS v1.3 and what is the next phase of specification development?

David DeSanto: TLS v1.3 is still in draft—specifically draft-28—and this draft has been submitted as the official standard. This was submitted in March to the IETC and is going through the IETF process to be a ratified standard.  It is expected to be ratified this year, and you can track its progress at https://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/draft-ietf-tls-tls13/.

Jim Carroll, OND: What is the market reaction so far?  Are customers implementing TLS v1.3 in big numbers?

David DeSanto: The market adoption has varied depending on the specific technology and vertical.
As TLS v1.3 is a cryptographic protocol used by a client and server to provide privacy and data integrity, users can be put into a “forced adoption” model without realizing it.  The best example of this is with one of the bigger champions of TLS v1.3: Google.  Google rolled out TLS v1.3 earlier this year within its services and consumer solutions.  If you have a Gmail account and access it using the Chrome browser, you are using TLS v1.3 and may not even know it.

There is a parallel effort—started by development at Google in 2016—to build a new transport layer protocol named QUIC (short for Quick UDP Internet Connections).  It was first submitted to the IETF in 2016 and is currently still in draft with draft-12 being the current working draft.  QUIC has encryption requirements built right into its standard and these requirements are based on TLS v1.3.  


Just these two examples show strong adoption of TLS v1.3 so far and it is expected to grow at a consistent rate.  TLS v1.3 is expected to be adopted at a much faster rate than previous iterations of the TLS protocol—due in large part to the providers we rely on today who are actively making the switch to support it quickly.  Google is joined by many others who have already implemented and have enabled support by default.

Jim Carroll, OND: What technical hurdles are there to implementing TLS v1.3?

David DeSanto: There are three crucial considerations that organizations need to keep in mind as they prepare to migrate to TLS v1.3. Every organization should be thinking about three crucial considerations:

1.      How to handle zero round trip time resumption (0-RTT)
2.      Preparing for downgrades to TLS v1.2
3.      The need for infrastructure and application testing

The 0-RTT option has the potential to significantly increase performance during an encrypted session between endpoints. With TLS v1.2, secure web communications requires two round trips between the client and server prior to the client making an HTTP request and the server generating a response. TLS v1.3 reduces this requirement to one round trip and offers the ability to inherit trust to accomplish zero round trips, or 0-RTT. 0-RTT potentially provides better performance, but it also creates a significant security risk. With 0-RTT, a transaction could be easy prey for a replay attack, in which a threat actor can intercept an encrypted client message and resend it to the server, tricking the server into improperly extending trust to the threat actor and thus potentially granting the threat actor access to sensitive data. Organizations should be wary of allowing or using 0-RTT due to the potential security risks.  Unless your application or service is highly latency sensitive, the new option is simply not worth the security risk.

Another concern is that TLS v1.3 is backward compatible to TLS v1.2 to allow for interoperability with legacy clients and servers during the transition to the new standard. It’s important to configure the security settings to ensure fallback to TLS v1.2 uses higher security standards. Organizations should disable lower cryptographic algorithms to prevent security breaches such as man-in-the-middle attacks. Select strong cipher suites, including ones that leverage elliptic curve key exchange, use large asymmetric keys, and implement PFS.

Testing is also crucial. The change to TLS v1.3 may be disruptive, and it’s important to discover and address issues proactively. Businesses should test for interoperability, security, and performance in a combined, holistic manner. Use a realistic load, generating, inspecting, and processing appropriate levels of encrypted traffic. Validate how internal and external users will interact with your systems and consider what this change in encryption may mean for an employee, customer, partner, or any other relevant stakeholder. You also have to test all clients—including mobile devices and tablets, and the entire network infrastructure, such as identity and access management systems, firewalls, web proxies, etc.

<Jim Carroll, OND: How can Spirent help with the transition to TLS v1.3?

David DeSanto: Spirent added functional security testing for TLS v1.3 to its industry-leading CyberFlood product line in July of 2017 when adding TLS v1.3 support to its Advanced Fuzzing solution.  This allowed protocol developers, QA teams, and security researchers to confirm the stability and reliability of the TLS v1.3 implementations they have built or are validating.  This includes hunting for software defects within the implementation, which could lead to software vulnerabilities.

We entered the market one year ago and extended our TLS v1.3 support in February of this year when we added performance security testing for TLS v1.3 to our CyberFlood product line. Spirent’s goal is to provide thought leadership and be a partner to allow customers to launch new solutions with confidence in network functionality, performance, and security at scale.  Others are now following our lead in providing solutions to help enterprises validate their security posture. 


Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Spirent adds scale testing for the new TLS v1.3 encryption protocol

Spirent Communications has expanded the functionality of its CyberFlood and Avalanche solutions by adding performance and scale testing for the new TLS v1.3 encryption protocol.

The new functionality enables testing and stressing traffic capacities on TLS v1.3-enabled devices and endpoint applications.

TLS (transport layer security) enables secure communication between web browsers and servers on the Internet. TLS v1.3 is the latest version and is quickly becoming the de facto encryption standard.

“TLS v1.3 will ultimately improve security and privacy for Internet users; however, there is risk with new standards and new potential holes in customers’ security,” said David DeSanto, director of products and threat research at Spirent Communications. “With Spirent’s performance and scale testing of this bleeding edge cryptographic standard, customers can validate that they are securely deployed, that they can achieve their desired performance, and that they know where the skeletons are in their TLS v1.3 deployments. With this capability, Spirent is helping to secure the future of the connected world.”

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Spirent launches Transport Layer Security (TLS 1.3) testing

Spirent Communications has updated its flagship security testing solution, CyberFlood, to support Transport Layer Security (TLS 1.3), a new encryption protocol.

Specifically, this newCyberFlood Advanced Fuzzing update provides support for TLS 1.3 draft-19, draft-20, and draft-21.

Transport Layer Security (TLS) is the underlying technology that enables secure communication between web browsers and servers on the Internet.

“As the first to market with fuzz testing for TLS 1.3, Spirent is extending its leadership in security testing and validating the way the world communicates,” said David DeSanto, director of products and threat research at Spirent Communications. “The industry is ripe for an encryption protocol update, and our customers are relying on Spirent to provide them with the realistic preemptive intelligence that ensures their TLS 1.3 implementations are stable, reliable and secure before they go to market.”

http://www.spirent.com/security

Friday, June 30, 2017

Spirent supports testing of New H3C 100 GBE switch

Spirent Communications, a supplier of network test and measurement solutions, announced that it supported New H3C in conducting what is believed to be the highest density 100 Gbit/s data centre switch test.

Spirent also announced it had partnered with the China Mobile Research Institute (CMRI) to demonstrate automated testing of virtual core networks.

100 Gbit/s switch testing

The test, completed by Spirent and the New H3C Group and moderated by independent test lab Network Test, demonstrated the line-rate forwarding capacity and hyper-scale IP route announcement capacity of the H3C S12500X-AF chassis loaded with 100 Gbit/s ports and achieving a density of 768 x 100G ports per chassis. The S12500X-AF switch can support 48 x 100 Gbit/s QSFP28 pluggable optical modules per slot.

The test involved Spirent TestCenter and the N11U chassis, representing Spirent's flagship network performance test solution, equipped with the high density dX3 12-port 100 Gbit/s test modules designed to verify next-generation data centre architectures and routers.

For the testing, Spirent TestCenter generated 100 Gbit/s line-rate transaction traffic of various frame lengths and provided packet loss, latency, jitter, frame sequence, code errors and FCS error analytics to reflect the quality of transmission in real time.

The Spirent dX3 quint-speed test module can support twelve 100 or 40 Gbit/s ports per slot, 25 x 50 Gbit/s ports, or 48 x 25/10 Gbit/s ports per slot. It also supports key interface features such as FEC, auto-negotiation and Link Training. The module can be used to verify data plane QoS for hyper-dense network devices at line-rate, and for testing complex routing, data centre and access protocols on switches and routers.

Virtual core network testing

Separately Spirent announced a collaboration with the China Mobile Research Institute (CMRI) to demonstrate automated testing of virtual core networks at Mobile World Congress (MWC) Shanghai. Spirent noted that the demonstration is part of a joint effort to develop a methodology for automated testing of the functionality and performance of the China Mobile TIC (Telecom Infrastructure Cloud).

The partners plans to incorporate the test methodology into an automated testing system developed by CMRI to speed testing of services in operational virtual core networks and to form part of the complete vEPC environment developed by CMRI.

At MWC, Spirent has provided the test engines for the demonstration, including the virtualised mobile core network emulation and performance testing tool, Landslide Virtual, and the automated testing platform, iTest. The solutions automate performance and functionality tests used to develop, spin-up and monitor the vEPC. In addition, devops models have been developed for the test methodologies, allowing tests to be automated and incorporated into the virtualised network.