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April 17, 2012

QualiSystems' Revamps TestShell to Revolutionize the Testing Automation Market

By Jamie Epstein, TMCnet Web Editor

Founded in 2004 under a different name locally in Israel and then finally ramping up in 2007 under a brand new name, QualiSystems (News - Alert) is headquartered in Israel, with offices around the globe including in California, England, Germany and Singapore. Touted as a robust software company, this provider’s goal is to become the best-in-class provider for lab management and test automation solutions, focusing on the telecom environment.

I recently had the chance to speak with Eitan Lavie, vice president of product management and marketing from QualiSystems, all about the robust capabilities TestShell 4.7 can offer test and network engineers.

With its array of software products designed to make customers more efficient in what they are doing today already, QualiSystems found that to implement and use software in different environments requires assistance, training and methodology. So, the company works together with customers to make sure projects are successful. Designed as an enterprise software for large IT-based installs for many users, the company was fully concentrated on creating a user friendly software that test/network engineers could utilize to build automation and drive and accelerate what they are doing currently on top of the company’s framework, without knowing how to program or being an advanced user.

Enter Testshell 4.7, an offering for lab management, device provisioning and test automation that is similar to Microsoft (News - Alert) Office in that it offers many different pieces for office operations like Microsoft’s Excel and PowerPoint. This solution includes different pieces of lab management, writing automation, running automation, collecting results, analysis etc.

Testshell can optimize lab performance, increase utilization of equipment in the lab and reduce the time it takes to set up a testing environment. By expanding testing coverage, users can easily create more automation by themselves. According to Lavie, “This is something we are very proud of as our customers can maintain their independence and don’t need to outsource to drive automation.”

From the lab management side, this robust offering encompasses everything that has to do with the inventory in a lab from  being able to book who is going to use what device and when to creating different topologies and sometimes even defining connectivity by embedded control of layer 1 switches. TestShell 4.7 can also be used for full blown test automation also known as “testing intelligence.”

Once you have automation, there is a lot of data out there and the main gap that occurs right after is to be able to analyze what issues and trends are there. With this new solution powered by the testing automation provider, everything is database-driven and users can transition these automated tests into defined flow charts and simply press play.

Already experiencing “awesome success” with third-year electronic engineer students who are driving automation for large companies, TestShell 4.7 enables everything to be hidden and wrapped in a very organized manner. Instead of just saving tons of logs into a location, users are saving this important information into normalized tables in a database, allowing for them to easily extract information that can show them exactly what is going on in the specific environment.

Some of the major benefits of this product include the speed in which end-users can write automation, enabling the same person who knows what they want to complete the project, and the ability to leverage automation. Even if users have created scripts and they want to use them, they need to insert different parameters; however with 4.7, they can simply right click on the device and everything needed uploads right away.

“In essence, we turned passive picture topology into an interactive, live working environment; allowing every end-user to leverage automation that already exists,” Lavie commented.

He concluded, “I think that the market has a huge need to shift to automation, but people don’t have the budget to do the testing that is required. Having failure in key environments is not something anyone can absorb and as environments continue to get more complex with the migration of many to the cloud, for guys behind the scenes our offering is exactly where we thrive in our ability to interact with so many different devices, applications and scenarios. Assisting multiple experts to do this by themselves is the key driver to keep up with the level of testing that is required today.”

Edited by Carrie Schmelkin
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