Testing of networking solutions based on SONiC OS

Larch Networks provides Software-Defined Networking (SDN) solutions based on Microsoft SONiC (Software for Open Networking in the Cloud) operating systems. SONiC supports rapid data center applications which are in high demand today. SONiC supports Docker-based microservices architecture and Redis Database as a communication channel between applications. Users of networking applications are interested in high quality and large functionality of available solutions. Therefore, quality assurance and testing become an essential part of SONiC based products life cycle shortening time to the market.

Data center solutions can integrate multiple programmable switching parts with different features and from different vendors. SONiC can be deployed at various places in the network, like spines, leaves, and top of rack. This produces multiple SONiC releases installed on different platforms with different kinds of Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASIC). In such cases a variety of SONiC environment versions entails demand for intensive testing.

Different kinds of interactions between SONiC components have to be taken into account during testing like the following:

  • Interactions during LLDP-state (Link Layer Discovery Protocol) transfer episodes.
  • Interactions of SNMP-state (Simple Network Management Protocol) subagents.
  • Routing-state interactions to process a new route received from an eBGP (External Border Gateway Protocol) peer.
  • Port-state interactions that take place during the transference of port-related information.
  • Interface-state interactions.
  • Neighbor-state interactions.
  • LAG-state (Link Aggregation Groups) interactions.
  • Configuration-state interactions.

Larch Networks develops its own ability to provide testing service of networking solutions based on SONiC operating system in order to keep up with market demand. Testing is a dramatically important process to secure the quality of the final Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI) based solution that reduces networking products time to market, starting from SAI design to the SONiC integration. Since SONiC and SAI both are parts of the Open Compute Project (OCP), it provides customers confidence their products meet expected quality and impact positively the overall user experience.