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July 01, 2008

Speed to Market with VoIP Test Solutions

By Erik Linask, Group Editorial Director


The evolution of VoIP, and the growth of SIP into the common voice communications standard, have considerably eased the burden on vendors looking to introduce new IP Communications technologies to the market. However, despite the emergence of standards, and increased interoperability testing, which are so critical in today’s multivendor environments, technology vendors must still ensure their solutions can handle the tremendous load pushed through them.
 
One way, of course, is to rely on trial and error — but that’s hardly an effective way to ensure success.  Rather, testing products and solutions before going to market is a considerably more reliable way to realize market success, which has paved the way for test solutions that allow vendors to test and rate their products.
 
Pennsylvania-based Touchstone (News - Alert) Technologies has been providing test solution to the communications industry for nearly two decades, and its WinSIP SIP call generator has evolved from a simple software-based load generator into a more complex tool for advanced media testing, advanced call flow emulation, and high volume load testing.
 
Touchstone recently released version 3.0 of WinSIP, in which it added an XML-based scripting engine, significantly increasing its flexibility and allowing the creation of nearly any scenario for testing purposes. With this added freedom, users can, in their lab environments, have complete control over call flows, message formatting, message digesting, media functionality, DTMF transmission and reception, and other user-defined variables, allowing simulation of any devices and their associated behaviors quickly and easily.
 
With this new functionality, users are able to more effectively test various configurations and call loads to ensure their products can adapt to today’s traffic-laden networks.
 
WinSIP, which can be run with equal effectiveness on a high-end Windows server (up to 5,000 simultaneous calls) or a single laptop (several hundred calls), is designed to simulate both audio and video sessions, acting as a call generator, call terminator, auto-attendant, or proxy server. For more advanced applications, is can also be scripted to follow specialized call flows and accommodate advanced media thanks to its self-learning feature, which allows it to conform to new codecs, run playlists, navigate IVR systems, and run tone recognition tests — all designed to test end-to-end connectivity in any number of communications environments.
 
Because no two networks are alike, the ability to perform various functions with a single tool is a time and cost saving feature for vendors.  As such, WinSIP’s capacity to function as a call generator, a feature/function tester, and an overall end-to-end assessment tool provides a valuable resource that not only assures market readiness, but does so without sacrificing time to market.
 
Erik Linask (News - Alert) is Group Managing Editor of TMCnet, which brings news and compelling feature articles, podcasts, and videos to nearly 3,000,000 visitors each month. To see more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.
 
For more information on VoIP testing and Touchstone Technologies, please visit the VoIP Test Solutions channel on TMCnet.
 



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