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We use NetIQ's Qcheck to test hardware routers. 

Here's a diagram of the test setup:

Hardware Router Test setup diagram

Equipment Details:

  • Computers: 
         "Beige box" Celeron 300A, 128MB, Win98
                                              or
         "Compaq 5451, AMD K-6 500MHz, 92MB, Win98SE
                                              or 
         Compaq 1650 (Pentium 266), 64MB, Win98SE

 

Here's how we test:

Qcheck Method

The Qcheck suite of tests is run on the product between Ethernet based clients on the WAN and LAN sides of the router. A suite of WAN-to-LAN tests is run to simulate "normal" router operation. Then the same suite of tests is run from LAN-to-WAN, to simulate the performance that a LAN based server being accessed from the Internet (WAN) side of the router would experience.  Due to the way that Qcheck works, the LAN client is either placed in the router's "DMZ" (all ports opened to the client), or the specific ports that Qcheck needs are forwarded/mapped to the LAN client.

 

HTTP Download Method 

Reviews done before January 2001 used either the HTTP Download method alone, or the HTTP Download method plus some of the Qcheck tests.  If Qcheck is not mentioned in the review, then the HTTP Download method was the only one used.

For WAN to LAN tests, the WAN computer is running MS Personal Webserver and the LAN computer is running Netscape 4.X.  

For LAN to WAN tests, the webserver is run on the LAN computer, the browser on the WAN computer, and HTTP port 80 is mapped through the test Router's firewall.

Testing is done by copying an approximately 20Mbyte file from the dedicated webserver to the client test machine using a web browser.  No other significant CPU-intensive applications are running on either machine.  

The file's URL is typed into the browser Location box and timing is done via stopwatch from the time the Save button on the "Save" window is clicked to the time that the "Copy Progress" window disappears. 

Transfer speed is calculated using this formula:

Transfer speed (Mbits/sec)=
 (Filesize in MBytes  / Total Xfer time in seconds) x 8

The fastest transfer speed that this setup can test is about 5.5Mbps.

 



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