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Testing Overlay Network (VXLAN) Infrastructure by Running Realistic Application Traffic

June 30, 2014 by Ixia Blog Team

The IT industry is in the midst of a fundamental move toward the centralization of application delivery via concentrated and dense private and public computing sites. Corporations are concentrating IT spending in data centers and scaling them up through server virtualization in order to reduce the complexity and associated operating costs – all while enjoying capital cost saving advantage. We have also seen a number of service providers start offering software as a service (SaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) options. Many enterprise businesses have migrated their application to cloud based services. The change is real and it is growing at very fast pace.

The growth in virtualization has also created many challenges to network engineers, such as how to manage and load balance the workload, VM migration, segmentation, and support multi-tenancy.

VXLAN is an overlay solution designed to address these challenges. It helps network engineers scale and manage networked cloud computing environments by allowing better segmentation, and it provides more flexibility for isolating cloud applications or tenants.

VXLAN is a key technology to an overlay SDN approach, in addition to standard layer 2/3 test methodologies. The network must be tested for stateful real-world application traffic in order to ensure that it can effectively carry application traffic without any degradation.

The following use cases can be considered for testing VXLAN with application traffic:

  • VM migration: This is one of the key benefit VXLAN offers to help with server load balancing. When a VM migrates from one server to another, it must retain its properties (such as MAC/IP) and policies. Also, the users using the application on that VM must be transparent to the end users. User shouldn’t experience any disruption or degradation in the service.
  • Application latency measurement: As the application traffic running on VXLAN as well as VXLAN to non-VXLAN domain, the transit and gateway devices (VTEP) have to perform encapsulation and de-capsulation process. This functionality may introduce slight delay (latency) in delivering application services. The network engineer has to make sure that the delay doesn’t affect overall quality of experience.

In summary, since the overall goal for SDN approach is to build application centric networks. It makes perfect sense to run realistic application traffic across the network to ensure user is getting enhance quality of experience!

Here’s How Ixia Can Help User to Run Application Traffic Over VXLAN

Starting IxNetwork 7.30EA version, users can run application traffic over VXLAN endpoints (hosts).

IxNetwork AppLibrary speeds and simplifies testing with a simplified workflow and framework that simulates application profiles. AppLibrary uses Ixia’s BreakingPoint Application Threat Intelligence (ATI) technology to provide an extensive library of pre-defined application flows that simulate end-user interactions and devices. The solution combines Ixia’s IxNetwork for protocol emulation and stateless traffic generation with the most current real-world stateful application simulations.

VXLAN

VXLAN 1

Additional Resources:

AppLibrary